Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College

Trees: Care and Maintenance of the Campus Grounds

  • F&M Seeking Tree Campus USA Status
  • Ted Schmid, Director of Grounds

Submitted by Ted Schmid, director of grounds at Franklin & Marshall College

Dear Colleagues,

There are three declining campus trees that have been identified for removal at the following locations:

1. Silver Linden Tree- Loading dock side of Distler, there is a large cavity  located 12' above grade on the main stem and significant wood decay associated with this cavity. The cavity in is an area of concern with regards to structural strength loss in the main stem. There is a second cavity located 26' above grade with wood decay and a vertical seam (fault) that extends upward from this cavity.  These significant cavities combined with additional smaller cavities and multiple risk factors warrant the removal of this tree.

2. Sycamore Maple - Located north side of Appel Infirmary on Hartman Green, the tree is in decline, evidenced by significant upper crown dieback also two large cavities in an upper main leader, as evidenced by large pockets of decay. A significant portion of the trunk flare has root decay, as evidenced by large fungal fruiting bodies growing on the decayed roots and wood at the base of the main stem. Recent branch failure is further evidence of low vigor. The mentioned risk factors are significant in this tree.

3. Norway Maple - Located west of Appel Infirmary, tree is growing in the lawn area, near a walkway with high pedestrian traffic. The tree continues to decline as evidenced by minimal twig elongation, symptoms of Verticillium wilt, a large cavity present in an upper main leader, recent branch failure and the tree has a moderate lean in the direction of the walkway and building. The mentioned multiple risk factors are significant in this specimen to warrant the removal.

There are two other trees that we have been monitoring but are showing significant declining signs: European Hornbeam located at the NE corner of the Gerhart House and an English Oak tree on the north side of Hartman Green.

We will replace trees where it makes sense, we prefer to plant trees in the fall when watering and temperatures are less stressful issues for trees. We are fortunate to have over 1,000 trees on campus with a significant number being mature trees. There are many benefits of having trees, to name a few, trees combat the greenhouse effect (trees absorb CO2), trees clean the air and provide oxygen, trees provide shade from ultra-violet rays,  trees cool the campus and trees indicate the changing of seasons.

Sincerely, Ted