Bidding Farewell to An Old Friend in the Public Garden

 The Friends of the Public Garden raised a glass (of non-alcoholic cider) to an old friend on Thursday, July 27, to toast the removal of a 110-year-old willow tree in the Public Garden.

The 110-year-old willow tree located on the southern end of the Lagoon
in the Public Garden, which is soon set for removal due to extensive

​After the recent discovery of extensive decay inside it, the tree, located at the southern end of the Lagoon on the Boylston Street side of the park, is designated for removal within the next few weeks.

​Rebecca McKevitz, the group’s director of capital projects and parks care, said the decision to remove the willow tree came only after much of it had substantially succumbed to rot. She noted how much willow trees contribute to the Public Garden’s landscaping  and added that the Friends would soon be undertaking a master plan for the willows in the garden in partnership with the city.

D. Murphy Photos
Liz Vizza, president of the Friends
of the Public Garden.

​Liz Vizza, president of the Friends, acknowledged the importance of their partnership with the city and the level of investment the Friends makes to care for the trees, which has allowed this willow to live twice as long as the average lifespan of its species.

​Vizza reflected on the many newlyweds over the years who’ve stopped for a photo under the tree after getting married in the garden, before asking neighbors and staff on hand to share their favorite memories of the tree. She then asked for a moment of silence to contemplate the long life of this willow tree.

​While honoring the more than century-old willow tree, Vizza encouraged those on hand for the event to “toast to the next generation of willows in the garden.”

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