Urban Big Trees - Sooke's Billings Spit Cedars

In an ideal world all utilities would run underground. If they did, our trees would be one of the biggest beneficiaries. In cities and towns across the land trees are mutilated in the name of keeping the power flowing. And keeping the power flowing can be difficult in big tree country during a windstorm, so trees must be trimmed. Here is an example of an impressive Western red cedar that has received a "bole cut" in order to clear the way for the power lines.

One thing the trim did was reveal some of the inner structure of this amazing tree. Possibly hundreds of years old, this tree shows its age with several major vertical branches forming a candelabra of leaders. The trunk is buttressed and thick with time, and it hosts several branches that would be large trees on their own.

There are several large and ancient cedars along Glenidle Rd. on Billings Spit in Sooke, including this one. Billings Spit is good cedar habitat. It is wet and often misty on the point dividing Sooke's harbour and basin. The other cedars are away from the power lines so escaped the embarrassing trim, but they are all impressive. It is amazing that these trees have survived the development of this area. I am glad they have because they are a major feature of the neighbourhood.

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