Auburn fans loved the beloved Toomer’s Corner oaks, so Valentine’s Day seems like the perfect time to plant new ones.
Two new oaks will find a home in Toomer’s Corner on Feb. 14, replacing the two that had to be removed after they were poisoned by Alabama fan Harvey Updyke Jr. in 2010.
The public is invited to see the new oaks — which are about 35 feet tall — planted, with the city closing several streets and setting up a viewing area near the intersection of Magnolina Avenue and College Street.
“We are partnering with the City of Auburn to make this a special day,” Mike Clardy, Auburn’s director of university communications, told AL.com. “Downtown merchants will be open early and three of Auburn’s athletic teams will be in action that day. We are hoping people will come to the Plains and make a weekend out of it.”
Hands off, though: Auburn “is asking fans not to roll the two new oak trees until fall 2016 as they establish roots and acclimate to their new environment.”
Clardy said in November that the effort to save the original oaks, improvements to Toomer’s Corner and planting the new oaks will end up costing about $900,000.
More oaks are on their way.
The second phase of improvements to Samford Park, “slated to begin after A-Day in April, will feature the planting of 30 15-foot-tall trees — grown from acorns collected from the original oaks — between Toomer’s Corner and Samford Hall,” the AL.com article stated.