And Now The News …

Michigan State University, June 28, 2022: Landscape trees begin to show signs of summer stress

The early summer heat and lack of rainfall in lower Michigan is beginning to affect landscape trees in our area. Trees often begin to show drought stress symptoms about the same time that unirrigated lawns begin to brown up. We are beginning to see common indicators that broadleaved trees are beginning to show the effects of heat and drought, such as shedding leaves and leaf rolling or leaf curling. Shoots on conifers may begin to wilt or droop and conifers may begin to shed interior needles as trees undergo moisture stress. Most well-established landscape trees can survive our typical mid-summer dry spells without any lasting effects. However, Michigan State University Extension notes that trees that have been planted in the last two to three years or trees that have experienced other stresses recently, such as root damage during construction, may require some attention during the current round of hot, dry weather. In the absence of rainfall, watering trees once a week is the best way to alleviate water stress. It is important to avoid overwatering and not kill trees with kindness. Also, make sure that irrigation water does not run off and is able to infiltrate into the ground. In clay soils, this may mean moving from tree to tree in a cycle to allow water to fully infiltrate while watering…

BBC, June 30, 2022: New map of ancient trees an opportunity for conservation

A new map shows there could be around two million trees with exceptional environmental and cultural value previously unrecorded in England. That’s ten times as many as currently on official records. This tree-map is sounding a rare note of optimism in the conservation world. But the Woodland Trust charity warns that these trees – known as ancient or veteran specimens – have “almost no” legal protection. It comes after a centuries-old oak tree was felled in Peterborough on Wednesday by the council, who said it was the most likely cause of “structural damage” to nearby homes. The BBC joined the hunt for one of these ancient giants. On the Ashton Court Estate near Bristol, we follow Steve Marsh from the Woodland Trust, fighting our way through brambles and rhododendrons, in the hunt for the legendary Domesday Oak. Instead we discover an ancient unnamed tree – one the Trust has no record of. We take turns sitting inside – the air is cool and still. An ancient tree is considered remarkably old for its age – they are sometimes known as “living archaeology”. They’re incredibly rich in wildlife – one ancient oak has more biodiversity than a thousand 100-year-old oaks…

Pensacola, Florida, News Journal, June 28, 2022: North Hill ‘heritage’ oak case: Pensacola loses second appeal in tree removal lawsuit

Pensacola lost a second appeal case last week attempting to block the removal of a “heritage” oak tree on Spring Street in North Hill. The Florida First District Court of Appeal issued another 2-1 decision Wednesday denying the city’s request for a full hearing before the court and certification of the case as an issue of “great public importance,” which would open a path for the Florida Supreme Court to hear the case. Three years ago, the city sued Larry and Ellen Vickery to block the removal of the protected tree. Following a new state law, the couple had obtained an arborist opinion stating the tree was dangerous and could be removed once the city was notified. The city sought the opinions of other arborists who said the tree was healthy and an Escambia County Circuit Court judge allowed an injunction to go into effect that blocks the removal of the tree until the lawsuit concludes…

Rockland, New York, Rockland/Westchester Journal News, June 29, 2022: State inspects trees along Palisades Interstate Parkway a week after deli owner killed

State road crews this week are scouring a section of the Palisades Interstate Parkway for “hazardous trees,” a week after Anthony Apostolico, owner of the famed Italian Food Center in West Haverstraw, was killed on Father’s Day when a large tree came crashing down on the family’s red Ford F-150. “Safety is always NYSDOT’s top priority and following last week’s tragic incident along the Palisades Interstate Parkway, tree crews have been dispatched to the PIP corridor to further inspect trees in an abundance of caution,” New York State Department of Transportation spokesperson Heather Pillsworth said Monday. The work is concentrated between Exit 15, Gate Hill Road, to Exit 16, Lake Welch Drive, along the northbound PIP. Orange markers and piles of wood could be seen in the left median and along the right side, where lush greenery and looming trees are just feet away. Along a small rock outcropping off the right shoulder of the northbound PIP, just before the left-side exit to Lake Welch, memorial flowers lay. Two of the Apostolico children — a 20-year-old son and 17-year-old daughter — were injured. The family, which resides in Chester, declined to discuss the incident now as they concentrate on their recovery. The scheduling of this work was linked to the crash, but Pillsworth said such maintenance is ongoing…

Los Angeles, California, Times, June 27, 2022: California drought, bark beetles killing the oldest trees on Earth. Can they be saved?

Forest pathologist Martin MacKenzie strode forward on a narrow path through California’s mythic bristlecone pine forest in the White Mountains near the Nevada border, methodically scanning gnarled limbs for the invaders that threaten the lives of some of the world’s oldest trees. These intruders are bark beetles, a menace smaller than a pencil eraser, but they bore by the thousands into the bark and feast on the moist inner core, where trees transport nutrients from roots to crown. Then they carve out egg galleries, where hungry larvae hatch. A blue stain fungus carried in by the pests delivers the coup de grace — a clogged circulatory system. For thousands of years, bark beetles were held in check or eliminated by the harsh conditions of the stony, storm-battered mountain crests where the grotesque, twisted trees have evolved an arsenal of survival strategies…

ABC News, June 29, 2022: Has this scientist found the world’s oldest tree? Experts aren’t so sure

A scientist in southern Chile believes he’s found the world’s oldest tree, a Patagonian cypress he says is over 5,000 years old — but not everyone is ready to hand the record over yet. Jonathan Barichivich, a scientist who has studied the tree, named the Alerce Milenario, for two years, told the journal Science that his research proves the 100-foot tall, 13-foot wide tree is the world’s oldest. His research, which is not yet published, challenges the current record — held by a bristlecone pine in the White Mountains of central California, known as Methuselah. That tree is 4,850 years old, according to Guinness World Records. However, Guinness World Records is not ready to hand the title over quite yet. Adam Millward, managing editor at Guinness World Records, told ABC News that he has spoken with the organization’s dendrochronology expert about the new findings, and the Patagonian cypress has already been deemed the world’s second-oldest species, so there is “no denying its longevity potential…”

Fast Company, June 29, 2022: 36 countries now have more trees than they did in the year 2000

Since the beginning of the millennium, the world has lost forests cumulatively covering more than 100 million hectares, an area about two and a half times larger than California. But there is some good news—and lessons for the future: those losses haven’t happened everywhere. Thirty-six countries actually had more trees by the year 2020 than they did in 2000. Countries—including Bangladesh, China, Denmark, Ireland, and Uruguay, and Bangladesh—had a net gain in tree cover, according to new data from researchers at the University of Maryland and the nonprofit World Resources Institute. Others, including the U.S., had a net loss. “The new data is pivotal, because now we have the full picture of a forest change,” says Katie Reytar, a researcher in the forests program at WRI. “For a long time, we had been looking just at loss in isolation, and doing the best we can with looking at gain in isolation. But it’s really the balance of the two that is that is important and understanding the full was full spectrum of what is happening, because you could easily restore a significant part of your country, but if you’re deforesting all of your primary forests in another region, you can’t really look at those independently…”

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, WHYY Radio, June 29, 2022: What property owners, developers need to know about Philly’s new tree rules

Philadelphians pushing for a greener, cooler city are cheering a bill that made it through City Council last week that could charge developers hundreds of dollars per inch of tree they remove and don’t replace. “I think that it is a really good start,” said Gabriella Gabriel Paez, a member of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s Tree Tender Community Advisory Committee and the city’s new Environmental Justice Advisory Commission. “I do not believe that it is comprehensive in terms of everything that needs to change in order to bring the city up to speed. But … something that I personally like to see is movement and action.” The bill, sponsored by at-large Councilmember Katherine Gilmore Richardson, expands existing requirements for developers around preserving and planting trees, as well as sets up new fees for developers if they remove trees and don’t replace them. It was among dozens of measures Council passed during its last meeting before the body went on summer break — and is part of the city’s plan to increase the city’s tree cover to 30% within 30 years. This goal requires the city to reverse the current trend. The city lost 6% of its canopy between 2008 and 2018, largely in residential areas. As of 2018, 20% of the city was covered by trees…

Wooster, Ohio, Daily Record, June 28, 2022: Storm effects linger: Area tree services backed up with storm-related clean-up calls

Rogue Tree Solutions in Smithville has an emergency response line, which means that Corey Parsons can get calls at any time of the day. So when he got a call at 12:30 a.m. on June 14 for a downed oak tree, he wasn’t surprised. What did surprise him was the additional nine calls, all for fallen trees, that came in minutes afterwards as he was trying to get ready to leave and respond to the first call. For the rest of that day and following two weeks, Parsons said he and his staff have been cleaning up debris following the storms that hit the area June 13. As of Friday, June 24 he estimated that they had responded to roughly 200 to 300 calls. Parsons is not alone as several other tree service and landscaping companies in the area have been helping communities clean up storm damage with several weeks’ worth of damage to still clean up. With the extra work comes delays to their normal jobs and some companies say it may take weeks to get back on track with their normal services and customers…

Conroe, Texas, Courier, June 23, 2022: Conroe adds tree buffer requirement to tree ordinance

The Conroe City Council continued work on its tree ordinance Thursday amending it to add tree buffer zones for all new residential development. Tommy Woolley, director of capital projects and transportation, said the amendments will create a 25-foot tree buffer around new residential development if there is existing residential development adjacent to it. While the early version of the amendment included a provision for a 50-foot temporary buffer along the front of the development that could be reduced to 25 feet once 75 percent of the development is complete, Councilwoman Marsha Porter said that was not necessary. “It seems we are placing somewhat of a hardship on some developers by having them jump through some hoops,” Porter said. “Seems to me we could eliminate the 50-foot buffer and just get straight to the 25.” However, Porter said if a developer does not follow the ordinance related to the 25-foot buffer and cuts too many trees, that developer would be required to have the 50-foot temporary buffer on any future developments within the city…

Ottawa, Ontario, Citizen, June 28, 2022: City staff considering how to repurpose mounds of tree debris after May’s derecho storm

City staff are figuring out what to do with thousands of tonnes of tree debris and hundreds of streetside stumps uprooted during May’s powerful “derecho” storm. They’re also looking at how to prioritize tree replanting this fall, and are taking applications from residents who want a tree planted on their city-owned street frontage. In a memo to council June 27, public works general manager Alain Gonthier reported that a debris management working group has been created to come up with beneficial ways to re-use tree debris hauled away to city yards after the storm, including wood chips and larger pieces of wood. In city parks – more than 40 per cent of which were affected by the storm – as well as pathways and wooded areas, much of the remaining clean-up will require specialized equipment and contractors and “take some time” to complete, said Gonthier…

Boston, Massachusetts, WBUR Radio, June 28, 2022: The trees were here first

One night late in June, in 2021, a couple of weeks before we were set to move away from our home of 38 years, a brief but ferocious thunderstorm passed through our Cambridge neighborhood. Normally I would have pulled up the blinds so that I could thrill to the sight of lightning forking down to the wet pavement. But on this evening we were engrossed in the last episode of one of the dozens of mystery series that filled our pandemic weeks. Rather than watching the storm, we were simply hoping that it wouldn’t knock out the power before the killer was caught. We didn’t see the lightning cleave the old maple tree across the street from us. But the sound of it falling, the crackle and whoosh of it landing on the second-floor porch outside our living room window — that was enough to overpower the throbbing television score that signaled danger. We opened the door to see half a tree arced over two cars and our narrow street, with a section of power line delicately looped around its trunk. The two houses facing ours were blacked out, but, miraculously, our outside light went on to reveal a gorgeous, glistening canopy of branches and leaves filling the porch…, June 22, 2022: Tree species diversity under pressure

In a new global study of more than 46,000 species of trees, an international team of researchers has shown that many tree species are under substantial pressure and poorly protected. The research team, headed by Aarhus University, has also studied how this situation can be improved by means of ambitious and smart designation of new protected natural areas. Trees play an important role for natural ecosystems, for our climate and for societies across the world. However, recent research shows that many tree species are rare, and are at risk of disappearing. This is why Jens-Christian Svenning, professor of biology at Aarhus University, took the initiative to conduct this large-scale research project. He is the director of the Center for Biodiversity Dynamics in a Changing World (BIOCHANGE) and was previously involved in mapping the earth’s tree species…

Guilford, Connecticut, Patch, June 24, 2022: ‘CT Has A Tree Problem:’ Guilford Part Of Eversource Tree Removal Plan

With trees causing 90 percent of outages during storms and severe weather happening more often, Eversource is launching a new, data-driven approach to vegetation management. The energy company has identified electric lines on its network with the worst reliability performance and is looking to collaborate with individual property owners and their community leaders to look at the vegetation along those lines. Guilford is one of 13 communities in the program. Using 10 years of outage data, Eversource arborists are working to understand how concentrated tree work, including retention and planting of appropriate utility-compatible trees can strengthen the grid to make it more resilient during powerful storms “Our goal is to find a collaborative solution with our customers and communities that has the potential to significantly reduce tree-related outages during storms,” said Eversource Vice President of Operation Services Steve Driscoll. “We have the data that shows how and where trees are impacting service to our customers and we’re looking to develop new ways to turn the worst performing lines into the most reliable circuits in our state, while planting appropriate trees to maintain the state’s character…”

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