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Tree Theft at Cornell Plantations

Published: 
3 years 1 week ago
On Thursday, December 4, 2015, Phil Syphrit, Curator of the Conifer Collection at Cornell Plantations, noticed that a white spruce tree (Picea glauca) was stolen from the collection. Sadly, this is an all to often occurrence during the holiday season.

Would you steal a Picasso from the Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University? If your answer is no, then you shouldn’t steal a tree or even a plant from Cornell Plantations.  

For the past 70 years, Plantations has served as a living museum on Cornell’s campus. It’s collections have been carefully cultivated to provide visitors with a world class public garden experience. When a tree or plant is lost to theft it is like losing a unique work of art. Please go to your local Christmas tree stand to purchase a tree that was harvested for this purpose.  

“During the holidays, many of us enjoy the tradition of decorating our homes and workplaces with ornaments, trees, and other symbols of the season,” stated Dr. Christopher Dunn, the E. N. Wilds Director of Cornell Plantations. “This is a time of giving. Unfortunately, others seem to see it as a time of taking. It is disappointing that recently, and in the past, some lost souls have deemed it appropriate to steal conifers from our collections, presumably for Christmas trees. Given that we are part of the Cornell University community, of educated and thoughtful citizens, it is all the more disappointing.  Please share the joy of the season with family, friends, and colleagues.”



Click here to view a News 10 Now interview with Phil Syphrit, curator of the Conifer Collection.

If you have any information regarding the theft of this tree please contact Cornell University Police at 607-255-1111.