The tallest tree on the campus of Michigan State University is no longer holding that title.
The very well-known dawn redwood that’s been standing within the W.J. Beal Botanical Gardens since 1954 received a 20-foot trim off the top. Officials say it needed to get done to save the tree and prolong its life after being struck by lightning.
Frank Telewski, Director of the W.J. Beal Botanical Garden says it’s one of the original trees grown from seeds gathered after an exhibition to China in the 1940’s from a small grove of trees thought to be extinct from earth.
“Hence we call it the common name, the dawn redwood, kind of like from the dawn of time. It’s not quite the dawn of time, but it’s a living fossil and it’s a very old tree as far as far as vegetation on the planet goes.”
For MSU alumni like Carolyn Miller, the trim was a decision she grudgingly agrees with.
“Whenever we lose a tree it is a little heartbreaking, but this one has such significance that it’s even more heartbreaking, ha ha…”
Because this tree is so special to campus, discussions are underway on what to do with the 20 feet of tree that was taken from the top.