Where have all the Sequoia's gone?

As a horticulturist, tree grower, pruner and planter I must take exception to the city’s decision to remove (murder) these beautiful trees. I must also take issue with the reporting on this story. Five stumps put to question the number of this serial crime. Further, misrepresenting that these “three” trees had “no market value,” and would soon be turned into firewood. Ask any woodworker or Eden Saw Lumber what redwood planks sell for? Those prices are for Coast Redwood, not for the much rarer Sequoia gigantea. It is such a valuable a lumber tree, that I have been planting 500 of them on a logged off property for future commercial harvesting. Recently, one experimental grove of these trees was logged off and shipped back to CA. Blue Mt.Tree Services hauled these trees off, as logs and I am sure that they will be milled into lumber quickly. The property owner should be given compensation for this wood.

As to references that “several people expressed gratitude for the removal when walking by.” What a crock. As I drove by, I hit my brakes, looked over to a woman watching and made to wipe tears from my eyes. She nodded in agreement!

Returning to the root cause of this action, the avoidance of trip-and fall lawsuits. It is all too common that many cities cut down mature shade trees when their roots buckle sidewalks. Sometimes they are the very trees that incompetent city planners insisted the developer’s plant. Sycamore Maples being one horrible example. IMO, the cost of removing these Sequoia’s probably exceeded the cost of repairing the concrete sidewalk. There are however, alternatives. One being rubber sidewalks. These elastic tiles look like brick paving and are a good alternative for addressing tree root sidewalk issues. Best of all they last for decades and do much to recycle some of our environmental waste.

I would expect public work officials to be skeptical but these trees might have been a good test project.
The individual panels can be glued to together and can be easily lifted up and replaced after roots are trimmed or more sand is layed beneath.

Sequim needs all the mature trees it has and less strip malls. Trees and sidewalks have competing needs, trees can ruin sidewalks, and sidewalk repairs or asphalting often kill the trees. Both sidewalks and trees are costly and valuable, so both needs must be understood. Most damage to sidewalks occurs as the roots become thicker, but it also occurs due to natural expansion and contraction. Cracks in sidewalks allow water to seep in causing damage, roots being opportunistic follow the water and air they need to breath.

We now come to aesthetics: Sequim is becoming ever more ugly, ripping out beautiful trees simply doesn’t help at all. Too much city planning is based upon corporate agendas, incompetent city engineers, ignoring those they are supposed to serve. If we want humane city life, then we damn better start paying attention that humanists are involved in those designs.
Dealing with competing agendas can be difficult. The solution does not always have to be a chainsaw and ax, it may involve comprises, such as narrowing the sidewalk, putting larger curbs around the but trace of the tree, using rubber pavers, or possibly even accepting uneven sidewalks. If we can put up signs to protect us from Elk crossings, why not a sidewalk sign warning of tree root passings? Pardon my cracks, but this sidewalk is tree empowered.

(Not one newspaper would print this.)