Snohomish’s Tree Tour will be May 9
Gary Ferguson leads the 2018 tree tour. The 2021 tour will be spread out with social distancing.
SNOHOMISH — Learn about the city’s magnificent trees with a stroll through the historic district organized by Green Snohomish.
The Snohomish Tree Tour will be held on Sunday, May 9 (Mother’s Day), with the first tour beginning at 1 p.m. and the second at 3 p.m. Tour guides will be meeting guests outside the recently renovated Carnegie Building at First Street and Cedar Avenue. The walking tour has been an annual event since 2017 but was canceled last year after the outbreak of COVID-19.
Former city parks planner Ann Stanton and longtime parks board member John First created a list of historic trees they noticed to create the route.
“I had a dream of putting together a walk and I had done it often with friends that came to town that I thought would appreciate it,” said First.
Many of the trees on the route are non-native and were brought over as seedlings at the turn of the century by early residents of Snohomish. Tour-goers can expect to see everything from a Chinese chestnut to a Giant Sequoia pointed out.
“We live in a really sweet spot right here in the Puget Sound,” said First. “The temperatures stay mild enough so you can grow semi-tropical plants, but yet it’s cold enough (for) the plants that need to have a dormant season.”
Lya Badgley, a local parks advocate and co-founder of Green Snohomish, compiled the list into what she initially conceived as a self-guided tour.
“Trees and green space have shown to be especially important during the pandemic because it allows people an opportunity to be outside and recreate,” said Badgley. “Trees show us that the community cares and it’s a really important significant thing.”
This unique collection of trees can shed some insight into the history of Snohomish. Many are estimated to be as old as the buildings where they were planted. A Sugar Maple found on the route was brought from Michigan by the city’s first mail carrier, for example.
“The trees (early residents) brought with them were what was familiar to them,” said First.
The tour is a rain-or-shine event and it is capped to 36 adults per tour group. There is no charge to participate, although there is a suggested $5 donation, with funds to be used to cover the costs of printing future brochures for the next time there’s a tour.
The tour is accessible for all ages.
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