We recently received this report from a long-term member of the Fort Mason Community Garden. More trees have been destroyed, shocking those who cared about them.
More bad news about the trees we have enjoyed for many, many years. The entrance to our beautiful Fort Mason Community Garden was lined with plum trees that flowered magnificently in the Spring and then had burgundy colored leaves when the flowers dropped (see photos below). The Park Service has chopped them all down and plan to plant native stuff in their place. [Webmaster: No trees.] As most of you know, native plants remain brown most of the year so now our entry way is completely ruined, in my opinion, and those of many other garden members.
Below are before and after photos of the entry way, and then a report on how the Park Service tries to justify why they did this horrible thing. They claim that the trees were beyond their life span and beginning to die off. However, the below photo was taken this past Spring and these plum trees sure look very healthy and beautiful to many of us. None of the garden members knew anything about this until all the plum trees were chopped down — a big shock to most of us.
There seems to be an epidemic of chopping down trees in this city that is contagious, and it is very sad and terrible for our environment and the esthetics of San Francisco. It is happening all over the city (200 coming down on Van Ness alone and many more in other neighborhoods). However, I was not expecting this horrible epidemic to affect the once very lovely entry to our beautiful Fort Mason Community Garden—which is a haven in the middle of a busy city.
(Signed) A Very Sad and Frustrated long-term FMCG member
THE PARK SERVICE JUSTIFICATION
Plum Tree Removal at Fort Mason (SF) – Dec 2016
November 18, 2016 Posted by: GGNRA Public Affairs
GGNRA will remove the plum trees at the Fort Mason entrance and replace with drought tolerant native plants.
The tree removal will begin in December with planting to follow early in the new year.
Plans for adding the Purple Leaf Plum (Prunus cerasifera) trees were developed early in the park’s history, 1974, but following the historic period of significance. These trees typically have much less than the 42 year life span we’ve enjoyed. Within the last 5 years, the plums have begun to die back and shed limbs, indicating they are well into decline.
Removing the trees will re-establish a historic view to the Chapel along Franklin Street. Overgrown yews that flank either side of the Chapel entrance door will also be removed and replaced. The project will also remove about 7,000 sq ft of turf.
Native, drought tolerant plants are coming from our Presidio nursery, grown from local seed.
By establishing this low water plant community at the park’s headquarters entrance, we are signalling our commitment to environmental sustainability. We will also replace the irrigation system with a much more efficient model and expect to be able to stop all watering in the entry area within 5 years.
These before-and-after renderings were developed by the Olmsted Center for Landscape Preservation as a treatment recommendation included in the 2012 Cultural Landscape Report Volume II.
While San Francisco and the National Park Service are cutting down so many beautiful trees in the name of “native plants” there seems to be an explosion of palm tree planting. I don’t understand this. What are we? L.A. North. Since when is the palm tree native to the Bay Area? Leave the beautiful trees alone while planting the native scrubs There is no reason to fell these majestic trees..
and with those trees cut down,how much of the mircroscopic and tiny elements of the Fort Mason ecosystem were also destroyed? How about the relationship between the bees, insects, birds, trees, and the Community Garden? Water is not the only resource to contemplate saving.
LIES, DECEIT, HATRED…it extends across cultures and species.
Those who tear down our beautiful, flowering trees see them as nothing more than sticks of furniture devoid of life, sanctity, or purpose. Those elected officials respect no one and stop at nothing, as they are influenced by wealthy developers and forceful fundamentalists. Their acts promote the denigration of not only our city’s life, but reveal how some don’t even hesitate to threaten the very life of our planet in pursuit of money, power, or influence. Such officials ignore the seriousness of our situation: ecocide and massive extinction. For humanity cannot kill everything around it and hope to live!