Toomer's oaks show signs of growth

Published: Mar. 8, 2012 at 1:19 AM EST
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AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - The task force charged with trying to save the poisoned trees at Toomer's corner confirms new growth can be seen on both trees.

News Leader 9 has learned the task force is about to embark on an experimental treatment to help those new leaves battle the poison.

The head of the Trees Task Force, Gary Keever, says "Basically we had two things to look forward to, either the trees would not break bud and they would be dead, or they would break bud and we would have some hope left of saving them."

Hope is still very much alive as early spring-like temperatures encouraged hundreds of new buds and immature leaves to sprout on both threes.

"It's a very positive sign that yes, the trees are still alive. We are going to monitor them and get a lift up later on in the week to look more closely at them," says Keever.

The Task Force is now aggressively hoping to protect and nurture the new growth, through an experimental procedure.

"We are very close to working out the details, of injecting a sugar solution into the trunks of the trees. Spike 80df interferes with photosynthesis and eventually the trees run out of food supplies, so we are hoping to artificially support that food supply by injecting the sugar substance into the trunk."

Keever says the chances that the trees will survive are still slim, but he adds, with every new leaf, hope literally grows.

He says the injecting the sugar like substances procedure will happen in the next two or three weeks.

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