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For the past nine years, Swingle has worked with the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) in Loveland, Colorado to care for and preserve a Washington elm tree, which is claimed to be a part of American history.
It has been rumored George Washington first took command of the American Army under a large white American elm on July 3, 1775 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It was later renamed “Washington elm,” and in 1888, seeds from that very tree were planted in a Maryland Garden. In 1923, the tree became very fragile and diseased, causing it to be cut down. Root shoots were sent to DAR chapters throughout the nation, including Loveland’s Namaqua Chapter.
The unpromising stick with fibrous roots arrived in Loveland in April 1932. The tree descendant was soaked, revived and planted with the permission of Lincoln School. Numerous construction projects, and a lack of care in its earlier days, almost caused the tree’s demise several times. Today, Loveland’s Washington elm is now one of only ten still thriving in the country.
Over the years, Swingle has provided plant health care, fertilization, and pruning to the historic elm. Swingle’s Landscape Care Consultant, Eric Shaub, continues our working relationship with the Daughters of the American Revolution to help maintain the tree well into the future.