That's One Tough Tree!
While other trees toppled over as "Frankenstorm" whipped through the region, the township's oldest tree, "Old Peppy" weathered the storm.
There's no denying the fact that Old Peppy is one tough tree. Once again, the 250-year-old pepperidge has survived hurricane-force winds and remained intact.
While hundreds of other trees were uprooted or suffered damage during Hurricane Irene earlier this week, the township icon, affectionately known as "Old Peppy" managed to weather the storm.
Nearly three years ago, the pepperidge tree, located in Lincoln Park, split in two and was thought to be a goner. Since then, "Old Peppy" has survived an earthquake, Hurricane Sandy, Hurricane Irene and a freak October snowstorm. Members of the township's Tree Advisory Committee say the tree is, in fact, formed from one of the strongest types of wood in nature.
During the summer, members of the Township Committee were trying to whether or not to go out on a limb and save Cranford's oldest tree which has begun to deteriorate in recent years.
The most extreme measure would have been to cut down the centuries-old tree. A more conservative involved constructing a six-foot-tall chain link fence around Old Peppy and posting signs cautioning residents against getting too close to the tree, which is frequently visited by residents and classes from local schools.
Two years ago, a tree service trimmed some of the branches on the split section to alleviate the weight, then installed four support cables to anchor the unsteady bough to the main trunk of the tree. If officials vote to save the tree, more trimming would have to be done to keep the limbs stable.
Old Peppy is believed to be the largest in the northeastern United States and is estimated at more than 250 years old.