Costello Sports Complex (Area G)
Leaving the area of Philippi Hall, the USM Arboretum walking crosses University way and enters the Costello Sports area. Constructed in 1998, the Sports Complex was an addition to the original Warren G. Hill Gymnasium, which was built in the 1960s to house a regulation size basketball court for college teams. The new construction included the addition of an ice arena, field house, and exercise facilities. As walkers approach the sloping east lawn of the Sports Complex, the gracefully cascading habit of a Pendula Weeping Beech (Fagus sylvatica ‘Pendula’) (G-1) can be seen. Just behind the Pendula, closer to Costello, stands the Katsuratree (Cercidiphyllum japonicum) (G-10). This tree can reach 100 feet in the wild, and has a spicy-sugary aroma during the fall foliage.
The bed of the Pendula is also the location of a Bristlecone Pine (Pinus aristata) (G-8), Fat Albert Spruce (Picea pungens ‘Fat Albert’) (G-9), and a Sargent Crabapple (Malus sargentii) (G-12). The Bristlecone exhibits an irregular spread during its slow growth, with needles in clumps of five. Although this tree does well in dry, rocky soil, it is not very tolerant of air pollution. The Fat Albert Spruce is identifiable by its distinct blue-green needles. The Sargent Crabapple is another crabapple on the tour that produces fruit values by birds. It also produces scented, white flowers. Beside the planting bed, walkers will see Robin Hill Shadbush (Amelanchier arborea ‘Robin Hill’) (G-2). Also referred to as Downy Serviceberry, this tree is a relative of the Allegheny Serviceberry viewed earlier in the Alumni Park.
Starting up the slope of the lawn toward Costello’s main entrance a clump form of a Red Jewel Flowering Malus (Malus sp. ‘Jewelcole’) (G-3) is present. Similar to many of the other Malus examples on the walking tour, the ‘Red Jewel’ has persistent fruit; however, with the chill that December and January bring, the fruit loses its brilliant cherry red color, and fades to a darker reddish brown. This tree was chosen due to its excellent resistance to scab and fireblight.
Heading towards Costello’s southern corner, there is a small stand of towering Northern Red Oak (Quercus rubra) (G-4). The Red Oak is a fast growing oak, and is abundant throughout the state. Within this stand, there is also a Paperbark Maple (Acer griseum) (G-11) and a Striped Maple (Acer pensyylvanicum) (G-13). Rounding Costello’s southern corner is an example of an Amur Chokecherry (Prunus maackii) (G-5), a tree that provides a spectacular winter interest with its amber to reddish brown bark. Walking along the building toward the entrance, walkers can find an Amur Maackia (Maackia amurensis) (G-6); another tree recognized for winter interest, the Amur Maackia’s cooper colored bark exfoliates, creating a unique and noticeable texture. A Fastigiata English Beech (Fagus sylvatica ‘Fastigiata’) (G-7) graces the right side of the Sports Complex’s main entrance.
No photos have been added to this gallery.