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A tree grows in Jordan Park

Scouts, alongside city staff, add some shade to Costa Mesa as part of their conservation efforts.

April 04, 2012|By Joanna Clay
  • Costa Mesa Cub Scouts Ryan Monahan, 10, left, and Hunter Kennemer, 10, high-five Edward Hernandez, left, and Carlos Avila after to group planted a tree at Willard T. Jordan Park in Costa Mesa.
Costa Mesa Cub Scouts Ryan Monahan, 10, left, and Hunter… (SCOTT SMELTZER,…)

The Webelos Scouts of Costa Mesa Cub Scout Pack 108 on Wednesday gave a special gift to Willard T. Jordan Park, where they meet three times a month.

With the help of city staff, they planted a tree as the final requirement to earn their World Conservation Award.

It's clear the environment is important to the group of eight Webelos, the highest rank in Cub Scouts. They'll all bridge to Boy Scouts in 2013.

"To be good to the Earth, make sure your cup doesn't fall on the ground," Hunter Kennemer, 10, told his fellow scouts after their snack.

The fourth-graders planted a pink tabebuia, a flowering tree that blooms in the spring. The kids crowded around as Daniel Dominguez, interim city arborist, explained the importance of trees to the city and showed them how to plant the tree and maintain it. He said to install stakes so the tree grows straight.

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"This is fantastic. It teaches kids to be responsible stewards of our environment," he said. "Trees are a wonderful asset for any community."

The World Conservation Award takes several badges — including Forestry, Naturalist and Outdoorsman — and months of work to achieve.

When asked how many trees he has planted, Ryan Monahan, 10, said he's planted trees "like a billion times." He later admitted the number might be closer to two or three.

"It builds character and they become aware of the community and the environment," Webelos Den Leader Deanna Kennemer said about her group.

The boys worked together, alongside city staff, to dig, plant and water the tree.

"I just like learning about trees because it's really fun to plant them," said Enzo Consoli, 9.

Enzo's mother, Regina Consoli, said Cub Scouts has ingrained important values in her son.

"It just shows him there's a world out there that needs his attention," she said.

Dominguez gave the group high-fives after the successful planting of the tree, which will make their meeting spot a little more their own.

joanna.clay@latimes.com

Twitter: @joannaclay

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