By Michael P. Walsh
Special to the Voice
Mayor Nancy R. Rossi and Tree Commission members planted a white oak at the main entrance of Painter Park on Oct. 19 to mark the 100th anniversary of Connecticut’s “Arborist Law.”
The morning event was part of the Connecticut Tree Protective Association’s Centennial Oak campaign to expedite the planting of a white oak in each of the state’s 169 cities and towns.
West Haven officials planted the Quercus alba American white oak — the state’s official tree — at the park’s main entrance, just off Kelsey Avenue. The tree was donated by CTPA through Planter’s Choice Nursery of Newtown.
During the brief ceremony, commission Chairman Robert Marra and Commissioners Gail S. Burns and Michelle Matteo presented Rossi with a plaque from CTPA commemorating the historic planting.
The Arborist Law primarily focuses on professional arboriculture, defined as work done to improve the health of individual trees on public and private property.
Rossi is working with tree warden Leo Kelly and the commission to improve West Haven’s Tree Management Plan and tree inventory process, along with implementing a sustainable and safe treescape in the heart of downtown.
CTPA, organized in 1922 and based in Wallingford, is an educational association dedicated to advancing the care of Connecticut’s trees. The association’s more than 780 members are mostly composed of licensed arborists, tree wardens and tree care professionals.
According to its website, CTPA aims to accomplish its purpose through educational events, regular workshops, and outreach and publicity, as well as through the example provided by its membership.