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Davey’s Work Flourishes at Henry Ford Estate

LookUpDetroit.com talks about Davey's historical presence at the Henry Ford Estate. 

Posted: April 24, 2014

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Although Henry and Clara Ford did not seek to build a lavish home, the nature lovers did pay a great deal of attention to design of the landscape. Many trees and other native plants found a new home in several areas of the property, creating the private nature haven the Fords sought.

The couple settled into their new home by 1915. But evidence within the woodwork of one ancient tree on the site suggests The Davey Tree Expert Company was there first.

A huge bur oak tree located on the lower landscape level of Fair Lane, near the Rouge River in Dearborn, stands within one of many prairie openings among the Michigan forests.  It is believed that Native Americans once camped in this opening.  The bur oak also served as a centerpiece in the Ford’s vegetable garden until the garden’s removal when Mrs. Ford’s died in 1950.

The bur oak tree is a living witness to the property’s past. In fact, it was among 21 American trees and plantings to be recognized by The Cultural Landscape Foundation’s “Landslide” program as a “Hero of Horticulture” in 2007.

Today, the approximately 300-year-old bur oak stands roughly 65 feet tall and nearly 16 feet around as one of the few remaining bur oak trees of its age in southeast Michigan.

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