On the heels of Arbor Day, volunteers will be wrapping up a tree-planting project at a Cemetery near the Oregon Slope in Ontario.
On Saturday, community members — especially those who donated money or their time to the project — are urged to join as 72 juniper spartan trees get planted along the fence line along Oregon Route 201.
Sally Baker, who has been helping members of the Fairview Cemetery Board on the project, said the project was quite big, but much needed. She said the preparations — including installing a water system, mapping out where trees would go, and storing the trees in a greenhouse over winter — have all been done. All that remains is the planting of the trees on Saturday morning.
The problem with the cemetery being located along the highway, according to Baker, is that there is not only a lot of people going by in noisy vehicles, but the wind is constantly blowing “a lot of paper and trash” into the facility. The tree-planting endeavor was started last fall and the cemetery board contacted everyone they could think of, including families of those buried there, to help raise money for a “row of durable trees that don’t lose their leaves.”
“It’s going to make a huge difference there,” Baker said.
Those who donated and show up on Saturday will be able to plant a tree in memory of their family, and a plaque will eventually be made commemorating those who helped out with the project. Additionally, for those who do show up, there will be coffee and rolls available. Donations for supplies have come from far and wide.
The trees are deer-resistant and will have rocks placed around them to help keep the weeds out.
Baker said the cemetery, which is along the highway about a mile or two south of the Annex School, has been there for about 100 years or more and houses the final resting home for “a lot of names that are well-known in the area.”
This includes E.J. Patch, who in 1907 donated 3 acres toward the resting grounds, formerly known as Hope Cemetery, according to a memorial marker at the site. A year later, the Local Progress Club purchased 2 acres, and in 1955, the space was improved by the club along with the Annex Farm Bureau. In 1956, the cemetery was deeded to the Fairview Cemetery District.