Get Growing Blog

Continuing Care for the Cornelian Cherry

August 16, 2023


As part of an ongoing work effort from the arborist teams, the crabapple collection has slowly come back to life as a collection. A joyous moment for any arborist is when you can truly see the difference or change in the tree. It brings a sense of wonder and excitement to know the tree will be changed for the better. It has truly been an honor to be able to help with this team effort.

A prime example of the effort and care placed within this project can be seen in the unveiling of this Cornus Mas (1976), which not a crabapple but still in the collection. Cornus Mas is commonly called a Cornelian Cherry or sometimes also known as the “Golden Glory”. It has a rich history in ancient Greek societies as the wood for spears and arrows have found the wood to be superior. Today, in other countries in Southern Europe and Southwestern Asia, the fruits are distilled for vodka, eaten raw or brined, and the seeds are substituted as coffee. It was a true privilege to showcase this tree and reflect its deep cultural heritage.

To clear away the undergrowth, I had to use a weed whip, brush cutter, and chainsaw to get though the mass of it. It was densely covered with weed overgrowth and barely visible. There were even well-developed volunteer Elm and English Oak within the mix. You could truly feel the tree take a breath once everything was cleared away. Afterwards, I went to work clearing out sucker growths, competing limbs, and dead limbs while giving a much-needed canopy lift. I felt such pride subsequently from the amount of change in the tree itself. It is not often that I can see how much change has occurred and this was truly a moment for myself. It was a challenge for my pruning skills and arboriculture skills to make this work.  

After: Cornus mas Golden Glory at Golden Hour

The best part was making the property value for this groundhog’s home go up and providing some much-desired landscaping. Next time you are in the Crabapple Corridor, as I like to call it, check out the great work being done continuously by the arborist team and come see the opened-up Cornus Mas.

Finley Dovicsak

Finley Dovicsak

Assistant Climbing Arborist

Finley has been with HF&G since April 2023. She comes with 3 years of tree work experience in a variety of types, from city tree work and production-based work. As an Assistance Climbing Arborist, Finley is responsible for the maintenance and care for all accessioned tree specimens across the three campuses and 3,600 acres, alongside the arborist team. The work is ever-changing and challenging, both aspects she enjoys in the job. Her favorite task is climbing so look for her leaping from tree to tree. Finley’s passion for arboriculture started after her first visit to Holden prior to the pursuit of tree work. It was the beauty and awe-inspiring landscape that sparked the fire. Being employed here has been a full circle dream come true.

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