South Garden Tree Replacement

Last weekend, Tom Kveder (Manager, Phytotorn / Greenhouse Complex at the AAFC Lethbridge Research Centre), took 30 cuttings from the 90+ year-old cottonwood tree in the South Garden at the Galt Museum & Archives. The plan is to propagate the cuttings in an effort to create offspring from the tree, which has reached the end of its lifespan.

An independent certified arborist report indicates two options for the tree are to replace it, or to prune it by 60% which could give it another 2-5 years. Due to the age of the tree, hazards related to its hollow limbs and other defects, combined with the high winds that circulate around the south garden, the difficult decision has been made to replace the tree.

“By the time the tree would recover from a 60% pruning, it would be time to cut it down,” says Susan Burrows-Johnson, CEO/Executive Director at the Galt. “Museum staff feels that propagating the tree, replacing it, and providing local woodcarvers and furniture-makers access to the wood, are the best options.”

The tree is located adjacent to the remaining 1891 Galt Hospital wall—a popular place for grad, wedding and family photos. Galt staff is interested in hearing stories about the tree—what stories or memories do you have of the tree? You can send these in to, or share them on the Galt’s Facebook page: Photos are welcome too!

Anine VonkemanComment