The tree company Sapin MTL presented Montreal city officials with a great idea: put up a municipal tree that was bigger than the one at Rockefeller Center. They selected a lovely tree that was 24 meters high, which was taller than any tree Rockfeller Center ever had. But then the 2016 New York tree was revealed to be 28.6 meters tall. Unwilling to give up the idea of a taller tree, the tree company scrambled to find one taller. They didn't have many to select from, and the one they erected turned out to be quite disappointing.
Facing a Nov. 30 deadline for unveiling the tree, the Sapin crew had to hurry. The tree was harvested, placed on a special flatbed truck and brought to Montreal under police escort within 72 hours. But a tight schedule and a tight budget meant that some corners were cut — and so was the tree.
Somehow, the tree that reached the closed-off section of St. Catherine Street where the market is held measured just 26.8 metres tall, 1.8 metres short of the one in Rockefeller Center. Pelletier’s brother Philippe, another principal in the company, said a bit sheepishly Friday that they had simply settled for the tallest tree they could find in time.
And there was no time or money to give it the extensive arboreal spa treatment that the New York tree gets; all the workers could do was reattach, sometimes rather obviously, a few of the larger branches that had broken off in shipping.
As for the decorations, Jean-David Pelletier said his company’s responsibility ended once the tree was in its bare steel stand on St. Catherine Street.
The tree ended up with ornaments that sport the Canadian Tire logo. The trunk is crooked, Some branches are missing, and the top is flat. But the tree has its own Twitter account, called Ugly Tree Montreal.
Most of the Tweets are in English. -via Fark