HERMON, Maine — Hermon Elementary School now has a variety of new trees, thanks to a $1,000 grant from the Maine Forest Service’s Project Canopy program.
Horticulturist Kendra Raymond, the mother of three Hermon Elementary students and one child who will attend in the future, wrote the application on the school’s behalf.
“This was my chance to do something to give back to the school,” Raymond said in a telephone interview this week. “The school benefits in so many ways [by having the trees on site].”
The trees include several species of maple and a variety of other native trees, including hawthorn, mountain ash, red bud and linden. Apple, cherry, pear and plum also are among them.
Raymond said some were chosen for fall color, others for shade and others for their flowering habits or because they produce fruit. As they mature, the trees will create a border along the school’s driveway and complement Hermon’s newly established Hermon Veterans Park.
Among the benefits of the project are that students can learn about tree identification, the landscape value of native trees, landscaping for wildlife, urban forestry, and the landscaping industry, Raymond added.
She said the theme of the tree planting proposal was “Trees are Cool” and that several students made drawings to go along with the application.
The planting process was a community effort, she said. The labor and equipment needed to prepare the ground and plant the trees were donated by Lane Construction’s Hermon paving plant. Webelo II Cub Scouts from Hermon Pack 25 helped with the planting and applied the mulch. Banners and Signs of Hermon contributed two signs.
Afterward, the Lane volunteers returned to the school daily to water the trees, a critical step in ensuring that the new trees thrive, she said. The Webelo group will provide future maintenance as needed, she said.