Orders are now being accepted for shade trees in Camden through the Camden Garden Club Shade Tree Program. Any Camden resident is eligible to purchase a subsidized shade tree for their property. Property owners should apply by March 25 to the Town of Camden.
Residents do not need to live on a main street or sidewalk. Trees can be planted anywhere on the property. The cost of the tree is $75 to the property owner with the rest of the cost covered by the Camden Garden Club and installation covered by the Town of Camden.
The Camden Garden Club Street Shade Tree Program is in its 55th year, helping to keep Camden filled with shade trees. The program is supported by the Camden Garden Club and administered by the Town of Camden. 13 tree variety options are available this year.
In 2022, all submitted orders were filled and 10 trees were planted. If trees aren’t able to be placed with every applicant, they will be placed on the waiting list for next year.
This year’s available varieties include six local and regional natives: shadblow, yellowwood, tulip tree, black gum tupelo, red oak, and American elm. Native trees provide increased ecological value to the landscape, with oaks being of special importance to moths and butterflies. Oaks support more insect species’ life cycles than any other tree (source: International Oak Society). The Camden Garden Club recommends owners select native trees whenever possible.
Planting, mulching and staking will be completed by the Town of Camden during May or very early June. Residents should mark the planting site well with stakes by the first of April. The trees are guaranteed for one year, provided they are properly watered. Property owners are responsible for watering well throughout the spring, summer and fall.
The Camden Garden Club Shade Tree Program was established primarily to replace town trees lost to age, infestation, disease and weather, and its origins can be traced to 1937 when the Camden Garden Club voted to plant a tree on the Knowlton Street school ground. Since then, the Club’s archives have documented more than 1,472 trees planted. Camden’s aggressive effort to plant successive generations of shade trees along its highways and byways earned Camden the designation of Tree City USA from the National Arbor Day Foundation in 1997.
Order forms can be filled out in person or printed and mailed to Town of Camden Assistant Town Manager Janice Esancy, 29 Elm Street, PO Box 1207, Camden, Maine 04843. A printable PDF of the order form is available on the Camden Garden Club’s website at camdengardenclub.org. A check of $75 is due at the time the order form is submitted. Questions can be directed to Town of Camden Assistant Town Manager Janice Esancy by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 207-236-3353 x7101.
The oldest garden club in Maine, the Camden Garden Club cultivates the art of gardening to its fullest sense, develops and preserves beauty in and around Camden, and promotes civic improvements, education, and conservation of natural resources. For more information on the Club and its activities visit camdengardenclub.org.