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Articles

Group mounting effort to save Baba's Tree

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Ojai Valley News photo by Perry Van Houten
The base of Baba's Tree, Jan. 23, shows signs of the damage it suffered during December's Thomas Fire.
Perry Van Houten, Ojai Valley News reporter
Caretakers of an iconic oak burned in the Thomas Fire are hoping the tree will survive and regenerate, but for now it sits behind a seclusion fence on a hill atop Sulphur Mountain.
Most of Baba's Tree, a massive coast live oak on the property of Meher Mount, at 9902 Sulphur Mountain Road, toppled during the fire in December.
The fire consumed the main trunk of the tree and shattered the tree's crown, said Meher Mount president Sam Ervin.
“When I first walked around and under Baba’s Tree after the Thomas Fire, I was struck by how shattered much of the tree was, and yet how beautiful even the burned and broken trunk and limbs were,” Ervin said. “I saw it almost like a sculpture.”
Working with arborist Michael Inaba, Meher Mount has put a care plan in place to create optimal conditions for its survival and regrowth.

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