Fort Thomas is known for the beautiful trees that grow here. The city has been recognized for its commitment towards urban forestry, and Fort Thomas was one of the first cities of its size to create a tree commission, which among other things, provided protection to public trees. With these proud facts displayed on the lapel of our city, recent trangressions along the streets of Fort Thomas have upset some the citizens.
Trees that line our streets are beginning to interfere with the power lines above them. The trees are getting too tall, making maintenance and functionality of the wires a problem. The solution has been to prune the trees, but the work that is being done is visually offensive.
In the cases that I have seen the entire top of the tree has been cut off, or a gigantic “V” has been cut into the top of the tree. In either case the tree is left looking dilapidated. The desired outcome has been achieved exposing the wires from the surrounding branches, but at what expense?
I contacted Duke Energy to see if they were responsible for the work being done on the trees, and they advised me that the work was contracted out. They were not confident to whom, but I was given the name of one company, Townsend Tree Service, who Duke thought had been hired to do the work. I contacted Townsend to inquire about the pruning being done, but they never responded to my question.
I spoke to the owner of Brentwood Landscape and Design, Bob Petracco, to determine where this problem rooted from. He said, “With the power lines at the height that they are it was a poor decision to plant the type of trees that are there now. The trees that were planted grow to the height of the wires if not higher; shorter trees should have been planted initially to avoid future problems.”
Our city has been acknowledged for the work that it does to support its tree life. The work being done throughout the city seems to go against the reputation that the city is known for, making these trees look awful and hurting their longevity. Planting shorter trees is not an option; more precise and aesthetic pruning is the best solution. Have you noticed the pruning problem? Let FTM know your thoughts and feelings about the work being done to the trees in the city!