Saitama City donated sakura trees
Mayor Hayato Shimizu of Saitama City, a sister city of Pittsburgh, visited Pittsburgh to renew friendship with Pittsburgh Mayor-elect Bill Peduto, and also met Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald on October 29, 2013.
The next day, Mayor Hayato and 8 city councilors visited North Park to plant two autumnalis sakura, at a beautiful spot on the lake. As Saitama City is launching a project to plant sakura trees, the Pittsburgh Sakura Project exchanged a promise to cooperate. The Pittsburgh Saitama City Sister City Committee also planted a white flowering snow goose sakura.
These honored trees will symbolize our strengthened cultural exchange program and friendship with Saitama City for years to come. They also help us reach our planting goal of 250 sakura (now we have planted 170 sakura).
5th Annual Fall Planting Day on November 2, 2013
Three days later was our 5th annual fall planting day. Many volunteers helped, including students from Shaler Area High School and families and friends who donated memorial trees. About 80 volunteers were allocated to three spots. We had planted 29 trees altogether. We also applied heavy duty deer fence to the older trees which were damaged by deer.
We thank those who worked hard behind the scenes to make this day possible. Arimoto + Mercer landscape designers have been instrumental. They spoke with the Allegheny County Parks Department, which agreed to allocate Tree Vitalize trees. Then they ordered the trees from Eisler Nurseries. They arranged with the North Park staff, who made sure the planting sites were clear of electric wires and water pipes. The designers marked where the trees should be planted. Park manager Mr. Schmitt and his staff carefully augured so that the trees would stand exactly at ground level. The designers made sure there was enough soil and mulch.
Thus, the day before the Sakura Project’s volunteers gathered to plant, more than half the new trees were already placed and filled with the soil. With all these preparation, we planted the rest and finished up with water, munch, stakes, deer fence and ties, all in two hours, as we had planned.
We appreciate so much for your help. Those of you who could not come and missed the fun, we have spring planting/festival on April 5, 2014.