AUSTIN (KXAN) — With hours left before a celebration of life ceremony for the 120-year-old pecan tree “Flo” at Barton Springs, a local group is pitching a plan to save it by adding structural reinforcements.
Save Our Springs, or SOS, said that its “Pergola Concept” provides an alternative to removing the historic tree. SOS added it plans to pay the bill for the project.
“With SOS’s offer to pay for the artful enhancements needed to make certain Flo’ cannot hurt any person or property, there is simply no rational basis for killing and removing the tree at this time,” the group said in an email.
The design of the project was created by Ben Livingstone and local firm Stanley Studios, according to SOS.
In August, Flo was diagnosed with “brittle cinder fungus,” which weakens the tree’s roots and trunk near the base of the tree. The Austin City Council decided to remove the tree in September, following recommendation from the city’s Parks and Recreation Department.
“While all of the arborists agree Flo is in bad shape, she was in bad shape in 1958 and none of the arborists can tell us how long Flo may live,” the group said. “By creating an artful and purposeful structure, Austin can choose to galvanize and restore our commitment to nature, preserving historical ties and shaping a more compassionate and harmonious future for Flo”
Austin Parks and Recreation declined an interview request, but invites the public to Wednesday night’s ceremony at the Barton Springs Pool. The ceremony starts at 6:30 p.m.