One of the most enduring symbols of the plight of the Acadians is under siege. The iconic Evangeline Oak in St. Martinville is under attack from nature itself. Actually, the threat to the large tree comes in the form of fig vines. While those vines might not look like much compared to the size of the Evangeline Oak arborists and agricultural specialists are already voicing concern.

At Monday's meeting of the St. Martinville City Council members were briefed on the status of the tree by arborist Jim Foret. According to a report in the Teche Today, Foret explained to the council the concerns about the fig vines and the options for controlling and or removing the vines.

The suggested plan of action appears to be to cut the vines. This will allow them to die off naturally. The clipping of the vines should not affect the Evangeline Oak itself. In fact, conservationist don't support any action that would bring chemicals, herbicides or defoliates into the mix. Once the vines die, they can be removed rather easily from the oak or they can be allowed to just fall off over time.

Regardless, the process could take several years to complete, especially if the plan suggested by the experts is the plan the St. Martinville Council adopts.