The Nashville Tree Foundation recognized one of Belmont’s biggest and oldest trees, the White Ash located on the west side of the maintenance building near the Foutch Alumni House, as one of 53 winners from this year’s Big Old Tree Contest. Belmont’s White Ash is approximately 80 years old.
Ash trees are facing a threat across the country from the Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive beetle species that is killing these trees at a rapid rate. Ash trees were once quite plentiful, and Belmont is taking preventative measures to ensure the trees will be around for many years to come.
“Belmont is committed to preserving and protecting one of our most precious resources: our trees. Over the past 20 years we have significantly increased our awareness in tree health with certified arborist inspections, routine pruning, subsurface and deep root fertilization, borer treatment and new construction protection,” said Belmont Horticulturist Mary Weber.
This is not the first time Belmont’s trees have been recognized, as the Hackberry near the Bell Tower, approximately 125 years old, was a big winner in 2009. The more than 200-year-old Mulberry in front of Fidelity, the 150-year-old Magnolia near Gabhart and the 150-year-old Gingko Biloba beside the Leu Art building were also winners in 1990. However, this year’s winner coincides with Belmont’s recent Conservation Covenant, Tree Campus USA recognition and 2012 official Arboretum status.
The Nashville Tree Foundation seeks to preserve and enhance Nashville’s urban forest by educating the public, planting trees in urban areas and identifying the oldest and biggest trees in Davidson County. Since its founding in 1986, the foundation has added more than 10,000 trees to the Nashville’s landscape and named 25 arboretums.
For images of all of Belmont’s recognized trees, click here.