Exploring Nevada City’s trees on walking tour | TheUnion.com

Exploring Nevada City’s trees on walking tour

The linden tree at Ott House, top of Broad Street.
Photo by Erik Anderson


Find tour maps and more info at NevadaCityChamber.com.

What better time for a contemplative walk with a housemate or socially-distanced friend? The Nevada City Tree Tour provides insights into the heritage trees that are with us throughout each, colorful changing season.

Nevada City is filled with beautiful trees and you can learn about them through the Nevada City Walking Tree Tour.

When miners came to California during the Gold Rush, they missed their families, but they also missed the traditional deciduous trees of their homes. Accounts mention that when they sent for their families, they asked them to bring trees. It seems they did, for Nevada City has more than her fair share of buoyant color and variety of plantings, from Magnolia to Liquid Amber to Maple and Dogwood.

Many fine specimen trees that grace Nevada City are due to the work of a single man, French immigrant Felix Gillet. Gillet founded the Banner Mountain Nursery in 1871. Apart from contributing to the flora of Nevada City, Gillet is credited with bringing filberts and walnuts to the West Coast, effectively beginning a profitable nut industry in California and Oregon. James J. Ott had six Sugar Maples sent from Vermont in 1867, these trees are planted in front of 421 Nevada Street, just one example of trees still here today.

Nevada City’s self-guided walking tour of 42 native and non-native trees in the downtown Nevada City has painted sidewalk leaves to identify trees on the route, which are maintained by the Chamber of Commerce. The map is available as a downloadable PDF and can be used on your mobile phone as well. The tour is divided in two routes, which can be followed or noted for insights, if a walker chooses to meander.

Take time to appreciate Nevada City’s atmosphere and history on foot. Large canopy trees are a significant contributor to greenhouse gas reduction. Nevada City’s beautiful heritage trees are a precious environmental resource as well as a life-enhancing asset. By cultivating appreciation, we help to be certain they are preserved.

Many fine specimens were planted by organizations and citizens throughout the years. Of special note is the newly planted Dogwood in Calanan Park. This specimen, Eddie’s White Wonder, was planted on Arbor Day 2020. The variety is a cross between Eastern and Western dogwood trees and is a ‘tip of the hat’ to Nevada City resident Ellen Clark Sargent. Sargent’s memorial and recognition for work securing women the right to vote is set to be installed in Calanan Park (corner of Main and Broad streets). This tree continues the tradition of citizen plantings. The tree was purchased with Fall 2019 tree tour donations.

The Nevada City Tree Tour is an example of community members coming together for good. Take time to de-stress and enjoy nature in the heart of Nevada City.

Find the Tree Tour map at NevadaCityChamber.com under “Tour Our Town”.

The production of the Nevada City Tree Tour has been supported by California ReLeaf, the Nevada City Chamber of Commerce and the City of Nevada City, with the sponsorship of Acton Arboriculture, Inc., Byers LeafGuard, Gold Creek Inn B&B, Three Forks Bakery & Brewing Co., and GoFundMe.com donations. Acton Arboriculture donated planting services for Arbor Day 2020.

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