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Large Wedgwood cedar is spared from getting chopped down

The tree named “Luma” became a cause this summer.

A double-trunked Western red cedar located in the Wedgewood neighborhood of Seattle

The Western red cedar in Wedgwood is estimated to be ~200 years old.

Photo via @thelast6000

Call it an olive branch? This week, a double-trunked Western red cedar slated to be chopped down in Wedgwood for a development project was spared from the ax.

The Snoqualmie Tribe played a major role in the effort to save the tree, which advocates dubbed “Luma.” Members of the tribe called for the cedar to be designated as a “culturally modified tree” since evidence indicated that it had once been used to mark tribal trails.

Culturally modified trees can be found throughout the region — their branches were once pruned in such a way to indicate significant sites of the Snoqualmie people.

The Wedgwood property’s owner, developer, and financial backer soon came to an agreement with the tribe to accommodate Luma as the residential housing project moves forward.

Attention may now turn to Maple Leaf, where a similar standoff over a Douglas Fir is taking place involving the same developer.