White oak tree selected as November tree of the month

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[Courtesy of Kimberly Baker] Jane DeNoble presents the Roses with the November tree of the month honor. From left: Tom and Patty Rose and Jane DeNoble and her dog Blue.

BRADLEY BEACH  — The recipients of the Bradley Beach Shade Tree Commission’s “tree of the month” for November are Tom and Patty Rose, who are the proud owners of a white oak tree, believed to be at least 150 years old, according to the shade tree commission. 

Mr. Rose, who with his wife has lived in the borough for 40 years, shared the tree’s story with the commission.

“Back in the late ’80s,” he said, “the tree suddenly lost all of its leaves and branches, was infected with oak gall and appeared to be actively dying. We loved our tree and wanted to do anything it took to save it.” 

Mr. Rose explained how he reached out to Rutgers Agricultural Extension in Freehold Township where they confirmed that the tree was stressed due to several consecutive years of harsh winters which were followed by periods of severe drought. These factors affected a number of white oaks across the state making the trees susceptible to pests and infections from fungi, bacteria and viruses.

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“I also got in touch with a local tree expert, Steve Barlow, who gave me information on how to eliminate the oak gall and get rid of the unwanted diseases and insects attacking the tree,” he said. “Steve also educated me on the proper feeding and watering techniques and suggested that I not use lime on the grass surrounding the tree, as it affects the pH of the soil which ultimately affects the tree.”

Mr. Rose also said that he was told that he needed to water the tree every day which ended up lasting a couple of months, but after taking all of the suggestions he and his wife were able to bring the tree back to life. 

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