A new report by Auburn University says the famed oak trees at Toomer’s Corner, allegedly poisoned by Updyke two years ago, are probably doomed and will need to be replaced, the Associated Press reports.
The report says the trees’ branches will continue to die, leaving them “aesthetically dead if not actually dead,” AP said.
Updyke, the rabid Alabama fan who allegedly boasted of his deed on a radio talk show — under the name “Al from Dadeville” — after Auburn defeated the Tide in 2010, is awaiting trial on charges of criminal mischief and desecrating a venerable object. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect. His trial is scheduled for Oct. 1, although his attorneys are seeking a change of venue.
The study, which was conducted by experts after a recent pruning, says a preservation committee will report soon to the university president on whether to continue efforts to save the trees or replace them, but concluded that “the long-term outlook for the trees is not good.”
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