(WSB photo taken last month)
It was a major point of discussion during the first two design meetings for the new P-Patch at 34th SW and SW Barton in Westwood (here’s WSB coverage from Feb. 13 and March 2), and it even came up during Mayor McGinn‘s walking-tour visit two weeks ago: Should the big birch tree that’s on the lot now stay, or should it go? Kate Farley sends word tonight that the decision has been made:
A special session was called for the steering committee of the Barton P-Patch to gather more information on how the gardeners can live compatibly with the birch tree, which will remain on site. Several local arborists donated their time and expertise to form a panel discussion. Included were Mark Harman of Stonehedge Tree Experts, Sean Dugan of Tree Solutions, Joe Markovich from SDOT, and Kyle Henegar, who is with the Washington Park Arboretum. Cass Turnbull from Plant Amnesty and John Hushagen of Seattle Tree Preservation were not able to attend.
The discussion was centered on how to protect the tree, and at the end of the meeting there was agreement that the controversial root barrier should not be installed. As Kyle Henegar said at the end of the meeting, “It just doesn’t get any better than this…these are some of the top tree people in Seattle.” Several ideas for protecting the tree were suggested and will be explored as we go along in the design process, so stay tuned.
The 34th/Barton site, previously Seattle Public Utilities land that wasn’t needed by that department any more, is being turned into a P-Patch courtesy of money from the Parks and Green Spaces Levy that voters approved in 2008. The third and final open community meeting before the garden is built, with a final proposed design to be presented, is scheduled for 1:30 pm Saturday, April 2nd – two weeks from tomorrow – at Southwest Community Center.
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