The Wilton Tree Committee is looking for the biggest, oldest and rarest trees in Wilton to help mark National Arbor Day with a celebration on Friday, April 24, at 5 p.m. at the Town Green. The community is invited.
First Selectman Bill Brennan will get the program started by reading an Arbor Day Proclamation followed by the naming of the town’s Tree Steward of the Year.
The committee will also unveil its newest venture, a Notable Tree List for Wilton. The first tree on the list is a large white oak on Danbury Road near Zion’s Hill United Methodist Church.
The list, Tree Committee Chair Kate Throckmorton said, will recognize public and private trees that are notable for the above reasons, for being associated with an historical event, or for their tangible value to the community.
“We are trying to educate people with our notable trees,” she said.
Trees on the list may be nominated by members of the public, but will be qualified by the tree warden and the tree committee. The committee plans to have a photo of the first notable tree at the Arbor Day celebration.
A statewide program, the Connecticut Notable Trees Project, is a computerized database maintained at the Connecticut College Arboretum. It includes one tree from Wilton, a European white birch that is 66 feet tall and 111 inches in circumference. Its location is not noted and Throckmorton does not know where the tree is but would welcome information to that effect.
Also at the celebration, an updated tree plan for Wilton Center and Merwin Meadows will be available for viewing. The plan highlights where new trees have been planted and where opportunities are to plant additional trees. The committee will conclude its gathering by moving to a nearby location to plant a newly donated tree.
More than 30 trees have been sponsored throughout Wilton Center since the tree committee began its tree donation program. New tree sites remain available for sponsorship of a shade tree ($525) or a flowering tree ($325). The cost of sponsorship includes the tree, planting, maintenance, and a marker identifying the tree and person in whose name it was given. Sites are also available for sponsorship of benches ($1,600). The bench sponsorship includes the cost and installation of the bench together with a memorial plaque.
For information about donating a tree or bench or nominating a notable tree, call the Environmental Affairs Office at 203-563-0180 or visit the tree committee web site at wiltonct.org/departments/environmental/tree.html.