Time for a trim

Posted on February 16th in Feature Story,News

Tree trimmer Bill Winn has been working on the trees in Hines Parks, which have a noticeably different look. (Photo by RANDY PARKS)

Several rotten limbs had fallen in recent wind and snow storms

In December 2010, with input from the city engineer and multiple sources, the Hines City Council voted to have the trees in the main park trimmed and/or taken out, due to safety concerns.

Although many of the trees look healthy on the outside of the base, up above, there was serious rot and dead sections. Some of the tallest of the 80-year-old trees were about 100 feet tall and this winter’s wind storms did great damage to those. “It’s a wonder some little kid in the park hasn’t gotten hurt, and that the dead limbs over the highway haven’t fallen on a car,” Superintendent of Public Works Pedro Zabala said last week.

Winn’s Tree Service, which addressed some of the same issues with the trees at Hines Middle School about five years ago, has been working steadily on the trees to reduce the risks to the public. “I wish people could see the deep holes and splits I’m finding at levels of 30 and 40 feet,” Bill Winn said Monday. “If the rotted holes weren’t full of ice on a couple of the worst trees, I could fit my whole chain saw inside the tree. Many of the trees are carrying far too much weight for the bases to safely carry.”

Recent wind and snow storms have taken a toll on the Hines Park trees. The Hines Council made the decision to trim the trees to prevent more limbs from falling and injuring cars or people. This photo shows the internal rot on a cut limb. (Submitted photo)

Winn is attempting to leave the tops of the trees “crowned,” which encourages healthy growth, but previous trimming projects — in the 1960s and 1980s —created some unhealthy “stubs” and pockets or rot, about mid-way on the trees, which have to be addressed.

Harney County Parole & Probation crew members, supervised by Darrell Williams, and Hines city maintenance crew have cleaned up the limbs as the project progressed. The smaller limbs were chipped on-site and hauled away. Local residents have utilized the firewood-sized pieces.

Three Lombardy trees and a cottonwood have been completely removed. Crews hope to finish the project this week.


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