A Planting Ceremony was held on December 10 at 10 AM at Seattle’s Jefferson Park, with five redwood saplings, clones of some of the largest and oldest trees on earth, being planted by children from Plant for the Planet — a world-wide kid-run organization of 8 to 14 year-olds interested in tree planting, keeping fossil fuels in the ground, and fighting poverty through climate justice. Below is the program and some photos from that event.
Athena Fain, 2017 President of the Seattle Chapter of Plant for the Planet was the Emcee for the Planting Ceremony
Program – Moving the Giants to Puget Sound
Redwood Tree Planting Ceremony
Jefferson Park, Dec 10, 201
Emcee: Athena Fain, 2017 Plant for the Planet President
Theo Faloona, Plant for the Planet Ambassador
Philip Stielstra, Seattle Tree Ambassador
Caroline Heege, Plant for the Planet Ambassador
Connie Barlow, Founder of Torreya Guardians
Andy Sheffer, Seattle Parks Facilities Director
Blessing of the Trees – Theo Faloona
Be Like a Tree Song – Aji Piper
Planting of the 1st Redwood Tree
Deb Brown, Seattle Parks Arborist
Ambassadors plant remaining 4 trees
Reassemble for tree poem
Theo Faloona, 9, participating in his first Plant for the Planet tree planting today, spoke about “Moving the Giants to Puget Sound,” a project for which he has served as coordinator.
Philip Stielstra, initiator of the “Moving the Giants to Puget Sound” project, described how important it was to be capturing the genetics of old growth redwood forests to reforest Puget Sound. He thanked the Climate Justice Ambassadors, Deb Brown, Andy Sheffer and Johan Scherer of Seattle Parks and David, Kerry, Jared and Jake Milarch of Archangel Ancient Tree Archive for making this all possible.
Connie Barlow leads a group of volunteers in the eastern US who are already moving seeds of the Torreya tree that is endangered by climate change. She presented gifts of sequoia seeds and a DVD of Jean Giono’s fable, “The Man Who Planted Trees” to the Climate Justice Ambassadors surrounding her at the podium.
Andy Sheffer, Seattle Parks Director of Facilities, talked about his avid support of increasing the tree canopy in Seattle and expressed his enthusiasm to be able to start the “Moving the Giants” project at Jefferson Park.
Kristen Walsh, with the help of five young Climate Justice Ambassadors, led those gathered in a blessing of the newly arrived redwood saplings. A 109 ft circumference circle was formed to signify the size of one of the mother trees, the Fieldbrook stump, from which one of the saplings planted that day was cloned.
The Fieldbrook tree was cut down in 1890, but if it were alive today, it would likely be over 400 feet tall and over 3500 years old. It would be the largest tree by height and volume on the planet. One of the five saplings planted in Jefferson Park is a tree with the same genetics as this giant.
After the blessing, the Climate Justice Ambassador Chorus sang the World Premiere of their new song, “Be Like a (Redwood) Tree,” led by Aji Piper, composer of the song. The audience joined in to sing the chorus of the song.
The first tree planting is started, with guidance from Deb Brown, Seattle Parks arborist.
Climate Ambassador Adonis Williams adjusts the depth of the plant based on instructions from arborist Deb Brown.
Robert McMurrey, KOMO4 TV photojournalist is adept at getting ground level camera shots of the kids planting the tree, while Philip Stielstra keeps a watchful eye.
The audience gathers to watch as the first tree planting is finishing up.
This redwood sapling, cloned from the Barrett Stump, 78 ft circumference, now has a new home in Jefferson Park.
One last group photo to mark the end of a successful Planting Ceremony in Jefferson Park on Dec 10, 2016.
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