One of the best things to do in giving back to the land is planting trees. And that’s exactly what Tesoro Viejo did on a beautiful April morning when they announced their partnership with Tree Fresno and planted three memorial trees at the new Tribute Tree Grove at Tesoro Viejo.
“With Earth Day just yesterday, it is fitting that we celebrate our partnership with Tree Fresno with the planting of these tribute trees today,” said Brent McCaffrey, president of Tesoro Viejo. “This community was designed to protect the natural beauty of the land, and we take our role as being good stewards of the land seriously.”
Members of the Madera County Board of Supervisors, Tree Fresno leaders, and residents of Tesoro Viejo gathered for the planting of the trees in the Tribute Tree Grove, located along the Hillside Loop Trail. One of the trees was dedicated to Gina Estrada – one of Tesoro Viejo’s first residents.
“Gina just loved this place,” says Kathy Harkness, Gina’s mother. “Two months before she passed away, she was dancing with family and friends at AXIS.”
The Tribute Tree Grove is just one more example of the sustainability efforts at Tesoro Viejo, which also includes an on-site tree nursery, an on-site water treatment facility, a walkable community connected with trails, and even grazing sheep that take care of overgrowth, nourishing wildlife and recycling vital nutrients back into the soil.
“Even before the first official dirt was turned at Tesoro Viejo, this community was recognized by the American Planning Association of California for its green community planning efforts,” said Madera County Supervisor Brett Frazier.
A quarter of the entire community is dedicated to open space, and Tesoro Viejo is making a difference in local land conservation with protecting historic California rangeland, water wildlife resources, as well as preserving the legacy of multi-generational cattle ranching. Tesoro Viejo is preserving nearly 600 acres of on and off-site land to preserve connected corridors of land from the Sierra Crest to the grasslands of the Central Valley.
The on-site tree nursery was planted with 10,000 trees 10 years before construction began. The trees not only give the community a sense of permanence, it provides ecological benefits of shade and filtering the air.
According to Tim Weaver who oversees the maintenance of the tree nursery, nearly 2,000 trees from the nursery have been replanted throughout the community. In fact, a mature tree from the nursery is planted in front of every house that is sold at Tesoro Viejo.
“The results show the good planning,” Weaver said. “While it was a huge undertaking in the beginning, it was a very good strategy to plant the nursery and let the trees mature.”
The new Tribute Tree Grove will feature species native to the region, including Western Sycamore and Valley Oak. Tribute trees serve as a meaningful way to honor or memorialize friends, family, veterans, pets, and others. Tribute Trees are available at www.treefresno.org for $450 and include a special tree planting ceremony for loved ones, a 15-gallon tree, engraved tree tags, and a three-year replacement policy.
“We have planted nearly 50,000 trees in the San Joaquin Valley,” said Mona Nyandoro Cummings, CEO of Tree Fresno. “We are thrilled to partner with Tesoro Viejo on this Tribute Tree Grove to continue our mission of transforming our Valley with trees, greenways and beautiful landscapes.”
The Tribute Tree Grove at Tesoro Viejo is Tree Fresno’s first tribute tree grove in Madera County.