The Notre Dame Arboretum Committee has been formed to address the loss of trees on the Notre Dame property due to age and disease. This committee is chaired by Notre Dame Academy Maintenance Director Pete Hehman. Other members include Notre Dame Sisters Ann Pflum, Mary Lea Paolucci and Mary Ethel Parrott, St. Joseph Heights Convent Facility Supervisor Jerry Hargett, Cincinnati Zoo Botanical Gardens Director Steve Foltz, Gayle Frazer, Registered Landscape Architect, Notre Dame Academy Principal Dr. Laura Koehl, and Notre Dame Academy teachers Ray Schlosser and Joe Gray.
We are developing a long-range plan to reforest the Heights and Notre Dame Academy properties and to develop an educational program to create an “arboretum” styled somewhat after the arboretum in Boone County on Camp Ernst road.
You may have noticed some of the changes already implemented on the two properties. We have established a tree nursery between the soccer field announcer booth and the softball field. This nursery will allow our tiny saplings to develop without predation by deer or other animals until they develop enough girth for eventual replanting elsewhere on the campus. The initial nursery is already full and will be expanded in the near future to accommodate more saplings.
A diverse set of saplings are especially noticeable along the drive to the front of the school donated courtesy of the Zoo Botanical Gardens. We are also working to identify all of the healthy trees currently on the two properties. As of this date, more than 90 trees of at least 20 different species have been mapped. A future goal would be to create tags for some of these trees and a “tree map” of the entire campus.
We also plan on transplanting several “shade doomed” saplings that we have identified around the campus. In the next week you may notice the beautiful fall foliage of a pin oak sapling along the drive next to the soccer announcing booth. This tree was recently rescued from a cluster of bushes behind the school.
Look for the planting of five new trees at the road split at the top of the NDA driveway before Thanksgiving. In December, we plan on a massive honeysuckle removal from the tree cluster next to the softball field.
One of the goals of the committee is to plant 25 to 50 new trees per year. Funding is always a concern. If you would like to help, please contact email@example.com.