On Thursday, the City of Santa Barbara Parks & Recreation Department will be pruning the Franceschi Flame Tree located in Parking Lot 12 at the corner of State and Gutierrez streets.
Due to safety concerns, the city has determined that a substantial portion of the tree must be removed. The tree suffers from a white rot decay of that cannot be treated. Although the appearance of the tree will be dramatically different, once pruned, the city hopes that there will be new vegetative growth that can be trained into a new, smaller tree.
Since the tree is one of the city’s designated historic trees, and can be traced back to the late 1980s when Dr. Francesco Franceschi operated a nursery on the site, a number of steps are being taken to try to save the tree while also propagating genetically identical specimens from the cuttings and planning for its eventual replacement.
The treatment and propagation plan for the tree was reviewed with the Historic Landmarks Commission and the Parks and Recreation Commission.
Fore more information, contact urban forest superintendent Tim Downey or assistant Parks & Recreation Jill Zachary director at 805.564.5433.
— Jill Zachary is an assistant Parks & Recreation director for the City of Santa Barbara.