Trees matter in Connecticut. One of the most densely settled states, it’s surprisingly also one of the most heavily forested. There are few places where so many people live so closely to so many trees.
Recent controversy over utility and transportation department roadside tree cutting should come as no surprise to those familiar with the Charter Oak, the muscularly limbed behemoth in which Connecticut’s charter was secreted to protect it from the king’s agents in 1687. Though it fell in an 1856 summer gale, the grand tree’s image has graced everything from lottery tickets to political ads and even the state quarter. Pieces of its wood are revered as talismans. With a tree central to our political creation story, it’s no wonder that trees are valued here, perhaps more so than elsewhere.