published Monday, November 26th, 2012

Orange Grove Center to donate new Osage tree to Hamilton County

  • photo
    Staff Photo by Tim Barber The Hamilton County Courthouse is seen through the many hardwood trees that make up the landscape at Walnut and Seventh Streets.

Orange Grove Center has donated a replacement tree for the over-150-year-old Osage orange tree which fell at the Hamilton County Courthouse in September.

The old tree, which was beloved by county employees and the hundreds of residents who married under its branches, fell in September.

“The Orange Grove Center is pleased to provide this tree to the County,” said Kyle Hauth, executive director of Orange Grove Center, in a media release. “We hope that this gift will have a long and healthy life in its new home.”

The Osage tree is the namesake of Orange Grove. In 1953, the old Orange Grove Elementary School was donated for the purpose of becoming home to aneducational center for people with intellectual disabilities. Before the school’s construction, the site had been home to a grove of Osage orange trees.

The center has cultivated Osage trees at their current location, and the tree’s large green fruit remains a symbol on the front of the center’s building.

The new tree will be planted on the Hamilton County Courthouse lawn on Thursday at 10:30 a.m.

“We are grateful to have this new tree from Orange Grove,” Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger stated in the release. “In the coming years, people will marry under its' branches and have shade provided for those seeking a quiet place for reflection and contemplation. This tree will serve as a reminder of the wonderful work done by the Orange Grove Center.”

So far, there has been no word on what will be done with the wood of the old tree, which is being stored at Enterprise South Nature Park.

For more information, read Tuesday’s Times Free Press.

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