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Resident business owner donates trees valued at $95,000

Resident business owner donates trees valued at $95,000

By Maria Rosa Higgins Fallon….
A prominent business owner and resident of Coral Gables is helping make his home city a little more beautiful.

Manuel C. Diaz, president of Manuel Diaz Farms, has donated trees worth $95,000 to the Coral Gables Community Foundation/ Parknership to be used by the city as an enhancement to the landscaping along Ponce de Leon Boulevard from Alcazar Avenue to Salamanca Avenue. The city commission accepted the donation on Apr. 26.

“On behalf of the residents of this community, we extend a message of gratitude to Mr. Diaz for this generous donation,” said Coral Gables Mayor Jim Cason.

Streetscape improvements currently are underway on Phase II of Ponce de Leon Boulevard. The donated trees, which are to be handpicked by Diaz, will enhance the overall streetscape significantly.

“Manuel Diaz’s commitment to the beautification of his home community is commendable,” said Vice Mayor Bill Kerdyk Jr., founder and advocate of the public/private Parknership program, which seeks private donations to underwrite improvements and acquisitions to parks and green spaces throughout Coral Gables.

On the list of donated trees headed to the city are mature Bismark Palms, Spindle Palms, Yellow Tabebuias, Gumbo Limbo, and Chinese Palms.

The Bismark Palms are to be planted on the landscaped areas at the intersections of Ponce de Leon and the cross streets of Minorca, Majorca, Madeira, Zamora, Mendoza, Menores, and Salamanca. The Bismark Palms, with their broad, silver-blue foliage, will create an impressive entrance to each block along Ponce de Leon Boulevard.

The Spindle Palms will be planted in the narrow median areas. A combination of Yellow Tabebuia and Gumbo Limbo trees will provide significant color in the areas of the two mid-block pedestrian crossings, one of which is adjacent to Coral Gables Elementary School. Additionally, two Chinese triple Palms will be planted in the large landscaped area near Salamanca Avenue.

The trees are scheduled to be planted during May.

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