SEC Blog: Toomer’s Oaks ‘Aesthetically Dead If Not Actually Dead’

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The future is not looking good for Toomer’s Oaks. According to the War Eagle Reader, the AU Tree Preservation Committee recently released an update on the most famous trees in all of college football, stating that the oaks are “aesthetically dead if not actually dead.”

College football fans have already lost one tradition this year in Nebraska’s red balloons, and the newest findings by the TPC may suspend rolling of the oaks for Auburn fans this season.

Talks have started to move from reviving the 130-year old trees to replacing them all-together. The process, according to AU officials, “wouldn’t begin for another 6-18 months depending upon the size of the new trees.”

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Auburn officials are going to let the trees live as long as possible before any removal begins, and have talked about turning the oaks into souvenirs for fans once they are removed.

Even the biggest anti-Auburn fans have to feel for the Tigers in this situation. One man’s idiotic decision has ruined one of college football’s most beautiful traditions.

According to TWER, The TPC’s order of operations are:

  1. Determine and make a recommendation as to what species of oak should be used to replace the current Toomers’ oaks. The replacement tree or trees will most likely be overcup oaks.
  2. Determine the size of the tree that should be transplanted to Toomer’s Corner.   If the decision is made to use nursery-grown trees that have been root-pruned during production, replacement trees could be dug before they begin to form new leaves in spring 2013, typically around mid- to late March, and planted after all contaminated soil beneath the plaza and extending into Samford Park  is removed. If the decision is to replace the trees with one or more larger overcup oaks from the landscape, trees will be root-pruned eight to 12 months before they are dug.
  3. 3.     Once 1 and 2 are complete, identify or develop a process by which candidate trees to be transplanted can be identified. 
  4. 4.     Depending on the candidate trees, develop a plan for preparing the tree(s) for transplanting by root pruning or other appropriate methods.
  5. 5.     Monitor the health of the existing Toomers Oaks, and once dead, give some advice on how long the tree will remain structurally sound, so they can remain in place and continue to be rolled.

H/T The War Eagle Reader