Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Life

July 13, 2014

Early July storm damages many of Goshen's trees

It’s hard to funnel all the damage from the July 1 storm into a 700 word column. I’ve seen so many trees down or shredded or blown apart or uprooted. I’ve seen them all over town. I’ve seen them on streets, on cars, on houses, on garages, on fences. I’ve seen big, beautiful trees knocked down and little ones snapped off at the trunk. I’ve also seen large dead trees still standing after the storm. This was a very weird storm.

I think the tree damage from the 2010 storm was worse, and maybe more dramatic. But I think the tree damage from this storm is more widespread; I think there is simply more tree debris as a result of this storm than the last big one. In 2010, the Street Department reported that 1,065 dump loads of brush were hauled to the Environmental Center in the aftermath of the storm; I wouldn’t be surprised if this storm passes that total.

Neighborhoods in west Goshen and on the north side of town, near the Boys and Girls Club, seem to have been hardest hit. But as already mentioned, there are pockets of damage all over, and all the piles of limbs and leaves are evidence that trees were knocked around everywhere.

We lost some really big trees. Ardean Friesen’s silver maple on Sixth Street was a giant; I didn’t get to measure it, but I’m guessing it was close to five feet in diameter. It leaves a gaping hole not only in his lawn and back yard, but In the whole neighborhood, as indicated by the fact that when it went down, it took the electric power for several days with it. There is a 4-foot diameter bur oak on Summit Street that came up by the roots. It’s a tree I’ve long admired. Its branches spread out at least as wide as it was tall, probably even wider, shading the whole property and house where it stood, as well as the street and alley. I counted the rings at a cut about eight feet above the roots: 152. Just around the corner, on north Seventh Street is a 3-foot diameter black walnut, estimated at 70 feet tall in our last inventory. The top 30 feet of it snapped off in the storm, even though the tree didn’t fully let it go, as if trying to hold onto its crown. Oakridge Cemetery lost some large silver maples, and we will have to take down nearly a couple dozen more that were severely mangled. These trees have seen a lot of history between them.

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Poll

Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

Yes, I work at eating healthy and exercising
No, I am happy with my fitness level
Changing my diet and exercise frequency is a work in progress
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