SANIBEL, Fla. — The City of Sanibel planted a pigeon plum tree (Coccoloba diversifolia) in honor of Dee Serage Century at the Community Park Preserve as part of today's 2021 Arbor Day celebration.
Each year, the City celebrates Arbor Day by planting a tree. Dee was selected by the City's Vegetation Committee to honor her 37 years of dedicated service as an environmental educator and advocate with Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation's (SCCF).
Luc Century, Dee's husband, was deeply touched to know that a tree would commemorate her legacy on the islands.
"The first tree she planted in our yard on Buttonwood Lane in 1985 was a pigeon plum. That same tree today is vital, strong and has many different native trees, shrubs and plants alongside of it that Dee planted and loved throughout the years," said Luc. "Thank you for recognizing Dee and her deep care for the plant community that is integral in who we are as caretakers of this island."
Arbor Day celebrations on Sanibel began 32 years ago when the City's Vegetation Committee, seeking to become recognized as a Tree City by the Arbor Day Foundation, recommended the City participate in annual observance of Arbor Day. Since 1989, Sanibel has celebrated Arbor Day by planting a tree in honor of a historical figure, local individual, or organization.
"Through her love and appreciation of nature, Dee researched and developed programs and educational campaigns to help our community understand the rich diversity of plants and wildlife on our barrier island," said Pam Miller, member of the Vegetation Committee. "Her leadership, enthusiasm, and creativity brought Sanibel to the forefront of programs and opportunities to share and educate residents and visitors alike, as to the environmental principles necessary for healthy co-existence with nature."
The pigeon plum was provided by McCallion & McCallion Realty and supplied by the SCCF's Native Landscapes & Garden Center. A medium-sized shade tree, the pigeon plum was planted at the City’s Community Park Preserve, 2231 Periwinkle Way, and can be viewed from the hiking trail.
The City and SCCF also strongly encourage residents to visit the park to view this year’s tree and enjoy time in the great outdoors in observance of Arbor Day.
Click here to watch a video honoring Dee's legacy as part of the virtual Arbor Day celebration.