Westport has 39 notable trees. They include maples, chestnuts, beeches, tulips, spruces, oaks and more.
That’s not my statistic. It’s not tree warden Bruce Lindsay’s.
It’s the number listed on the Notable Trees Project website. Established in 1985 , it’s a volunteer effort sponsored by the Connecticut Botanical Society, Connecticut College Arboretum and Connecticut Urban Forest Council.
A computer database maintained at the Arboretum includes records of 3362 individual trees in the state: size, location, ownership and condition. You can search by scientific name, common name, species or town.
But if you want to see those notable trees, you’re on your own. Exact locations are not given (something about permission from private owners).
One intriguing link on the site lists “Charter Oak Descendants.” Westport is not there.
Supposedly, a seedling from Connecticut’s most famous tree grew in the courtyard of Staples High School, when it was built on North Avenue in 1958. No one remembers exactly where, though. Apparently it was destroyed in the modernization project of 1978 — or the most recent one, a decade ago.
The website is an interesting project. Let’s hope — after so much Bunyanesque action here — that all 39 “notable trees” still stand.
(Hat tip to Gloria Gouveia)