Vandals damage trees at Edmonds’ Hutt Park

Examples of damage to maples at Hutt Park.

Examples of damage to maples at Hutt Park.

My Edmonds News was alerted Thursday night that more than 30 trees have been slashed at Edmonds’ Hutt Park in the Seaview neighborhood.

Hutt Park MapEdmonds resident Laura Martin discovered the damage on Thursday and reported it to Councilmember Diane Buckshnis, who lives in the area, around 6 p.m.

maple hutt 2“There are more than 30 trees vandalized,” Martin said in an email. “Most of the trees damaged/killed are maples. Presumably because the lumber of a maple is soft enough for a hatchet to lacerate. Judging from the decomposition (or lack thereof) from the leaves attached to the limbs that have been completely severed, many of the damaged trees had to have been hacked within the past week or less.”

Buckshnis, who lives in the area, noted that she was in the park last weekend and didn’t notice any damage. The first maple tree at the park entrance “is completely destroyed,” she said.

maple hutt 3Buckshnis said that city parks officials and police have been notified.

 

If you like what you are reading, please consider a weekly, monthly or one-time voluntary donation of any amount to support our work. You can donate via this link.

16 Comments

  1. This sucks.

  2. There is an alarming increase of vandalism going on in Edmonds. It’s time we started strengthening our neighborhood watch programs.

  3. Is there a pattern to the damaged trees location? Are they blocking someone’s view?

  4. I walk through Hutt Park a few times a week with my dog – this had to have been rather recent – as my last walk was on Wednesday and there wasn’t any damage anywhere.

  5. Our neighborhood watch group brought up that on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon, the trees were fine, so it appears it happened very recently. Very, very sad and unnecessary.

  6. If anyone hears something about this and the possible people who caused it, I hope they speak up. This is a total lack of respect for public property and nature and is a crime as well.

  7. Thanks for My Edmonds News, KIRO7 will have it on the news tonight at 6 PM. The devastation is more pronounced and further in the park. Rich Lindsay provides all the details tonight. If anyone knows anything or has seen anyone carrying a small hatchet or machete, contact the Police Officer Moore and the case number is 14-3604. Special thanks goes to Laura Martin for notifying me last night and taking all the pictures. There are over 30 trees and it is truly a sad day in Edmonds just because of this ignorant move and the total lack of respect to nature.

  8. This is terrible. I’m sure someone will know something about this. This is a small community. That is a lot of trees and does not appear to be the type of large scale thing that would be just done by some teenagers just to trees…….Are all the trees in close proximtiy to each other and is this an area where someone somewhere around there would possibly want a better view?……just a thought. …..sorry, didn’t see your good ideas, Jeff Bandy

  9. This presents a challenge to our excellent police. I would not bet against them figuring this one out.

    The city should replace every damaged tree with at least two Douglas firs and Western Red cedars.

  10. This should be some jail time and about 1,000 hours of community service for someone.

  11. My parents have lived below this area for over 20 years. Some neighbors adjacent to this park have been trying to get trees cut down on the private woods surrounding this park….. for years.. so that they can get a view, and increase their home’s worth. It’s been very contentious and sad. The trees need to stay. If you want a view, buy a home closer to the water. It’s sad that you need to run outside every time you hear a chainsaw or people out in the woods, to make sure people are not cutting down trees on your property. The penalties are not high enough.

    • Would the removal of any of the damaged trees improve someone’s view?

      • I had understood this wasn’t view related.

  12. It looks like girdling — foresters use girdling to thin out trees without cutting them down. The trees die slowly over time. I hope the city does replace them. Someone knew what they were doing..

  13. This is very sad to hear. Hopefully there will be very strong prosecution.

    Many of us remember the clear-cutting of the wooded slope near Marina Beach Park by the Point Edwards Condominium Project Developer back in 2004. An old Seattle Times article states that Triad offered to pay $1,000 a day in fines and donate $100,000 to the city beach-ranger and flower programs….but I don’t recall exactly what was settled.

    I’ve experienced 19 cherry trees cut down in a critical area in the Daley Street right of way just east of 8th Avenue.

    I’ve experienced City Staff requesting a right of entry to cut down a tree on my property without telling me that they were acting related to a legal settlement proposal requesting that the tree be removed no later than end of business on August 6, 2009. At 3:16 PM on August 6, 2009, the former Public Works Director emailed the City staff member who got me to sign the right of entry agreement for tree removal and told her: “Good work!”

    I remember the sudden loss of a magnificent tall Douglas Fir Tree near the intersection of 3rd and Walnut back in 2010. Contractors cut a significant amount of tree roots in preparing to build a driveway entrance to a development. My Edmonds News reported the following comments by City Engineer Rob English:

    “They were given specific instructions not to proceed but they did anyway,” English said. “At that point, the decision was made to allow the removal since the tree was now a safety hazard.”

    I believe Edmonds is becoming a weaker and weaker contributor to the urban canopy in our region. I believe we need much stronger laws to protect our valuable trees.

    A U.S. Forest Service representative has stated that Urban trees are the hardest working trees in America and that these trees provide temperature control, clean water, clean air and climate change mitigation by sequestering tons of carbon.

    I hope the damage caused in Hutt Park is fully assessed-the full value of these trees must not be under appreciated.

    • Very well said Ken.

Leave a Reply