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Purcellville removing town tree

The Town of Purcellville has announced that it is removing the decades old Christmas tree located at the teardrop on Main Street.

The town announced its decision "with great sadness," explaining the tree had been damaged during Hurricane Sandy and has now been affected with Rhizosphaera needle cast.

A fungal disease, Rhizosphaera needle cast affects spruces, firs, pines and hemlocks and causes needles to fall off and never grow back.

According to a release from the town, officials have worked with an arborist and tree management contractor for the past two years to try and save the tree, to no avail.

The tree was planted by members of the Nicholas family with help from local businesses as a "celebratory tree." It was the second Christmas tree that had been planted at the same spot. The tree was a central part of the town's annual tree lighting ceremony and often boasted decorations.

Once the tree has been removed, the town plans to work with both the community and arborists to replace it.

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