Big Texas tree gets new home in Tulsa

Wednesday, March 1st 2006, 10:38 am
By: News On 6

Many home gardeners move plants from one spot to another. Most of those projects are small and easy to do. A transplanting project was so big in a mid-town Tulsa neighborhood Wednesday, it attracted a crowd.

News on 6 reporter Rick Wells says may have been the largest tree transplanting ever in Tulsa.

Landscaping projects don't usually attract spectators, this one did. Folks stopped to watch.

Paul James, the Gardener Guy, from the Home and Garden Channel had his crew here shooting a segment for his Gardening By The Yard show.

The project was a 32 foot tall willow oak, trucked to Tulsa from Houston, Texas. It went into a hole in the ground the backyard of the home. Rick Wells: "You guys ever do anything like this?" Scott Williams with Preaus Landscaping: "Not this big at all not even close this is a big tree."

Scott Williams says the tree weighs about 36,000 pounds. They used a 210-ton crane from Bennett Steel to pick it up.

After a couple of hours of preparations they were ready for the tree. "Pull up and go this way just al ittle bit." Gee, easy for him to say. Actually nothing about this project has been really easy, the tree that originally occupied this spot had to be removed. Scott Williams: "We estimated that tree weighed 75,000 pounds." Now they're ready for the new one. The crane gently picked up the tree and over the house it came. This part, I bet, was the worrisome part, as 18 tons of tree was carried over a two story house. But just as gently as they picked it up, they put it down again, settling it into its new home.

Immediately they began filling in the hole, coaxing a 25 year old tree from Houston to feel at home in Tulsa. The landscapers say they'll make sure the tree gets plenty of food and water over the next few months, but it may take a year or more before they're sure this transplant has been successful.