NOLAmotion Blog

October 28, 2009

City Park Soil Remediation Project: One Step Forward

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Newly hired LSU AgCenter horticultural agent Russell Harris (L) stands with La. Dept. of Agriculture & Forestry arborist Tom Campbell (R) under two live oaks where soil was aerated, remediated and improved at the new City Park Dog Park.

City Park’s consulting arborist, Tom Campbell, working with contract arborist Tom Benton, has taken the first step in best practices for live oaks with a soil remediation project for two trees at the site of the new dog park. This location, where cars parked for decades and compressed the soil, was a great candidate for the effort.

Working with what arborists call an “air knife” that injects compressed air into the soil, loosening it and allowing air, water and nutrients to flow, the soil was also amended with organic matter and now looks rich and life-giving.

The site will now  serve as a test for future efforts. The next likely candidate area is the playground near the Peristyle, where years of human activity have compressed the soil and badly damaged many mature trees.

Kudos to Tom Campbell and City Park for taking the initiative to begin this much-needed process of restoration and best practices!

October 22, 2009

Cashio Cochran Takes “Risks” in City Park

Just what every ancient live oak needs: a man-made building.

Just what every ancient live oak needs: a man-made building.

Thanks to Lolis Elie and the Times-Picayune for telling the story of how I’ve been trying to promote best practices for tree care in our area.

This is just a brief post for new visitors. I’ll be updating in greater detail later. But, I have to address a statement made by landscape architect Carlos Cashio in today’s article. He says that “sometimes you take risks to accomplish certain design elements.” My response is NO, YOU DO NOT TAKE RISKS WITH MATURE LIVE OAKS IN CITY PARK. Ever.

I post these pictures to let you decide for yourself. What is more beautiful: Carlos Cashio’s concrete and brick pyramid-hat building or God’s ancient live oak?

Architectural symmetry is more important to Cashio Cochran than the beauty of an older live oak.

Architectural symmetry is more important to Cashio Cochran than the beauty of an older live oak.

It’s past time to let some of the true stewards and visionaries in the field of landscape architecture shape the future of this precious place. We already know what Cashio Cochran can do, and it does not meet my standards of the concept of legacy.

After I challenged this construction, sand was used under the brick rather than concrete. However, sand has little pore space to allow air, water and nutrients to reach the tree roots, so the tree will suffer so we can walk on bricks. Harming the oaks steals from the future and violates the standards of stewardship needed for the park.

After I challenged this construction, sand was used under the brick rather than concrete. However, sand has little pore space to allow air, water and nutrients to reach the tree roots, so the tree will suffer so we can walk on bricks. Harming the oaks steals from the future and violates our history.

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