We thought that you might want a few more details about the newly planted trees given to the City of St. Regis Park through the courtesy and generosity of Jim and Mary Wallitsch and the Wallitsch Nursery and Garden Center, and a bonus tree provided by Ecotech through the Kentucky League of Cities secured by Councilman Talbott Allen.
At 2801 Saddle Horn Court, 4314 Dannywood Road and 2521 Foxy Poise Road, you will find a variety of Maple called “Flame.” It is a species of maple commonly referred to as an Amur Maple. Amur maples are smaller maples reaching about 15-20 feet high and wide at maturity. “Flame” is truly a “four season tree,” with bright red new growth and fragrant, though not necessarily showy, flowers in spring; lustrous, deep green, three lobed leaves in the summer months; an outstanding brilliant red fall color. The multi-stemmed selections provided by Wallitsch will provide interesting structure in the winter months.
4304 Mt. Vernon Road and 2605 Aintree Way feature Franklin trees. Named after Ben Franklin by the botanist who originally discovered it, the Franklin tree disappeared from the wild in 1803, but is still grown by nurseries today. It has glossy, narrow leaves that will reach 5 inches long and very nice fall color in shades of red, orange and purple. Its most interesting features are the summer flowers. They are 3 inches across with white petals and sunny yellow centers.
You’ll find “Jack,” a cultivated variety of Flowering Pear at 2506 Aintree Way, 4502 Lincoln Road, 2515 Foxy Poise Road and 4503 Sunridge Road. “Jack” will eventually reach 15 or so feet tall and 10 feet wide. It will be covered with pure white flowers in early spring before the leaves emerge. The leaves are a glossy dark green in summer, turning a brilliant yellow, red, purple sequence in fall. It is resistant to fireblight, a common problem of other pears.
At 4605 Stormon Court, “Ivory Silk” was planted in the side yard. It is a cultivar of Japanese Tree Lilac. It is a small to medium sized tree, reaching 20-30 feet high and 15-25 wide. It features creamy white flowers held in clusters (called panicles) in late spring that are very showy because the flower clusters can reach as much as a foot long,
A hybrid Dogwood called “Venus” is planted at 4404 Dannywood Road. Its claim to fame are the perfect, 4-petaled, pure white flowers up to 6 inches across that are borne in late spring. The glossy green summer foliage turns an exceptional red in fall and it sports tiny, strawberry shaped fruit in the fall. It has excellent insect and disease resistance and will reach up to 20 feet high and wide.
“Regal Prince” is a columnar selection of oak, meaning it will be much taller than wide. It was planted in the side yard of 4301 St. Regis Lane. It will grow to 40-60 feet high and up to 25 feet wide. It has two toned green leaves that are very densely held on the tree and has a strong, full branching structure. It has excellent disease resistance. It was developed by crossing a Swamp White Oak and an English Oak.
Finally, at 4301 Lincoln Road, you will find a Red Oak, a stately native tree. It will grow to 75 feet high and wide under normal circumstances, though many famous specimen trees are much larger. It is a favorite of birds and squirrels (of course!). The leaves will unfurl a pinkish red, change to a dark green in summer and on to a russet or bright red in fall. The bark will become deeply ridged and furrowed with age.
And our bonus tree for the year was provided through Ecotech’s 10,000 Trees Partnership. Ecotech planted a Red Maple called “Brandywine” at 4508 Lincoln Road. “Brandywine” has brilliant red to purple fall color and will reach a respectable 25 x 12 feet at maturity-or perhaps larger. Its biggest claim to fame is that it only produces male flowers, which means no seeds (botanically known as samaras) — though some people may miss the “helicopters” of the maple.
As you walk through the City of St. Regis Park, we hope you’ll enjoy the new trees that have been planted thus far, and we hope that you will look forward to seeing more new trees. Credit should be given to the Wallitsch Nursery and Garden Center again for providing such a great selection of beautiful, insect and disease resistant and durable urban trees, and to Ecotech for its decision to give back to the community it serves by donating 10,000 trees over the next 10 years.
One other point we wanted to mention. Some neighbors have asked about staking their trees. Although staking used to be a common practice — and still is in certain situations like wind prone areas and steep slopes — it is not considered necessary in most situations, and even when stakes are needed, they should only stay in place for a year. Actually, staking can sometimes do more harm than good. Stakes that are tied too tightly can girdle trunks, weakening and eventually killing a young tree. Stakes tied too loosely can cause rubbing that results in wounds and scarring that my never heal properly.
Research shows that slight trunk movement helps strengthen trees by thickening the trunks and ensuring a good taper from bottom to top. Trunk movement also stimulates good, strong root systems. Trees are meant to sway in the breeze — those that are allowed to will grow better and live longer.
Cindi Sullivan, Consulting Arborist
St. Regis Park Tree Board: Jane Ecker, Joe Hinkle and Mary Mattingly