Contributing Writer - Marshall Lockyer Leland, Summer Crew Team Member
When I think back on my past week with Casey Trees, adjectives such as hardworking, fun and fulfilling pop into my mind.
To begin with, Casey Trees is not a lax organization. They have a strong mission statement and each day they push us to do the best that we can. Thus far, the Summer Crew has surpassed all expectations and hope to continue to do so.
My favorite experience from last week was visiting the U.S. National Park Service's American elm nursery on Dangerfield Island. This experience taught me a lot about the American elm and gave me the chance to plant trees for the first time.
We also had ample time to ask questions about different tree species and illnesses. One of the many interesting facts I learned was that Dutch Elm Disease (DED) killed hundreds of thousands of American elms across the country and that the cultivars planted today are much more resistant to DED.
The trip to Dangerfield Island was also very fulfilling because the American elms planted there ultimately make it onto the National Mall. I found it very cool to think that in five or so years, one of the trees that I potted or planted may end up at one of the most famous places in America.
This past week I also joined the Water By-Cycle crew which was something I really wanted to do. It is amazingly fun and each day I come home feeling fit, healthy and satisfactorily sore. On average we work in two Wards a day and bike for approximately two hours. The rest of the time is devoted to watering and weeding trees.
My two colleagues, Sean and Dylan, are great guys and Adam, the Bicycle Crew Captain, is awesome. With their company and jokes the hours fly by making each day that much better.