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Fox News, April 17, 2017: New database gives tree scientists an important first

Tree lovers, take note: A new database called GlobalTreeSearch has for the first time provided a tally of all the world’s tree species. The answer: 60,065. Scientists from Botanic Gardens Conservation International in the UK spent two years compiling the database, relying on information from 500 published sources and from local experts around the world, reports NPR. In an article in the Journal of Sustainable Forestry, they note that it’s the first overview of all known tree species by scientific name. The database will be “hugely useful for us in prioritizing which ones we need to do conservation action on and which ones we need to do assessments to find out what their status is,” says BGCI exec Paul Smith. Among their findings: Brazil is home to the highest number of species at 8,715, and 58% of trees grow in just one nation, making them vulnerable if whatever country that happens to be is lax on protection…

New England Sports Network, April 17, 2017: This sad attempt to two out tree stump with SUV goes horribly wrong

Among the many interesting things about trees is how deeply rooted in the ground they often are. You’d think this would dissuade people from attempting to yank them out of the ground with anything other than a backhoe, but the world still is filled with many people who throw common sense to the wind. In a video recently uploaded to YouTube by Khaled A., someone can be seen attempting to tow a tree out of the ground with an SUV, and it goes about as well as you’d expect. After putting up with the vehicle’s persistent nagging, the tree finally fights back…

Sonora, California, myMotherlode.com, April 17, 2017: What To Replant After The Trees Die

The Sierra Nevada in is experiencing an unprecedented die off of trees on both private and public lands. Removing dead trees from your landscape is important, especially around the home, to prevent damage from falling trees to homes and infrastructure. Dead trees will also eventually fall to become large fuels on the forest floor leading to more intense fires. It is important to assess what is left after tree removal before considering replanting, as there is often a lot of live vegetation remaining. If you have a significant number of trees left, you may not need to replant. Make a survey of your property; map what is growing and where. Ponderosa pines grow well only in sunny conditions and do not tolerate shade. You may find young pines growing in sunny gaps created by canopy trees dying. Incense cedar and white fir tolerate shade and are often found growing in the understory. Oaks may be doing well where nearby conifers have died. Oaks have the ability to drop leaves during drought and can also re-sprout if their tops are killed. So, even oaks that look dead may be able to rebound. You may want to promote the smaller trees left after the dead ones have been removed. Thin trees out so that available sun and soil moisture is focused on the healthiest individuals. (Some watering of these trees in the summer may help counter stress caused by increased solar radiation.) Consider clearing out shrubs, grass and other competition. Digging up natural conifer seedlings and moving them is NOT recommended as this can harm the tree’s already developed root system…

Spokane, Washington, KREM-TV, April 17, 2017: City council members seek answers in South Hill tree removal incident

Spokane City Council members Breean Beggs and Lori Kinnear are seeking answers after dozens of trees along the South Hill bluff were bulldozed by mistake. A contractor bulldozed a road and removed the trees near the Qualchan Golf Course. As of Friday evening, no involved party has taken responsibility for approving the removal of trees on the bluff. The Parks Department and Avista confirmed that they never gave authorization to a logging company for destruction of the landscape and tree cutting…

AP, April 16, 2017: For tree lovers and woodworkers, there’s beauty in a burl

As you glance up into tree limbs, perhaps searching for some sign of spring in a swelling flower bud, your sight might be arrested by fat, rounded growths on the bark. On some trees, these hard, woody outgrowths — called burls — stand out on an otherwise clear trunk like a goiter. On other trees, the whole trunk might be covered with these masses. If you’ve never noticed these growths before, don’t be alarmed. They cause little or no harm to the tree. That said, burls might — just might — indicate that the tree has been under stress. All sorts of things have been implicated as the cause of burls. For instance, a burl could grow in response to a limb rubbing against the bark, to chewing by insects or some other physical injury. Perhaps the tree experienced or is experiencing some environmental stress — temperatures too cold or too hot, not enough food or not enough sunlight, for example. Diseases have also been held responsible for burls. However, no pathogens are found inside burls when they are cut open. Still, a pathogen could have done its job of inducing a burl, and then skipped on to other adventures. We could also blame genetics, because some tree species are more prone to developing burls than others. Redwoods are renowned for their burls, which are often sold as souvenirs…

Ipswich, Massachusetts, Wicked Local, April 16, 2017: Ipswich DPW worker seriously injured by falling tree

An Ipswich Department of Public Works employee was injured by a falling tree Sunday, according to Ipswich Police Chief Paul Nikas. At approximately 10:20 a.m., Acting Fire Chief Jeff French called into the Ipswich Communications Center requesting a medical helicopter to transport an injured Ipswich DPW worker who had been struck by a falling tree. Ipswich firefighters, along with members from the Massachusetts Bureau of Forest Fire Control and Ipswich DPW crews, were conducting overhaul operations in the forests off Pineswamp Road and Linebrook Road in Ipswich. The overhaul operations are designed to seek out and wet down hot spots left over from Saturday’s forest fires, which 14 area fire departments were called in to extinguish. Fire crews remained on scene conducting overhaul operations later Sunday…

New Providence, New Jersey, TAPInto, April 16, 2016: JCP&L’s 2017 Tree Trimming Program Underway Work Includes 3,600 Miles of Lines and Will Help Enhance Reliability

Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L) plans to spend nearly $34 million in 2017 to trim trees along 3,600 miles of power lines to maintain proper clearances around electrical equipment and help prevent tree-related outages. During April and May, the work is being performed in nearly 80 municipalities across JCP&L’s 13-county northern and central New Jersey service areas.“Proper tree trimming helps reduce the frequency and duration of power outages,” said Mark Jones, vice president, Operations, JCP&L. “Our foresters and certified tree experts work year-round to properly maintain trees and vegetation. This work pays dividends in fewer service disruptions, particularly during severe storms that can do tremendous damage to trees, which then have the potential to damage our equipment.” JCP&L’s tree trimming program, conducted by certified forestry contractors under the company’s direction, includes inspecting vegetation near the lines to ensure trees are pruned in a manner that helps preserve the health of the tree, while also maintaining safety near electric facilities. Trees that present a danger or are diseased may also be removed. As part of the notification process, JCP&L works with municipalities to inform them of vegetation management schedules. In addition, customers living in areas along company rights-of-way are notified prior to work being performed. To further decrease tree-related outages, JCP&L’s foresters also are working to educate residents who live near company equipment about the importance of properly maintaining the trees on their own property…

West Palm Beach, Florida, WPTV, April 16, 2017: Study: More beetles can carry disease killing avocado trees

University of Florida researchers say they’ve found more beetles that can carry a disease threatening avocado trees. The redbay ambrosia beetle considered the main carrier of laurel wilt is rare in avocado groves. But in a new study in the Journal of Economic Entomology, plant pathology professor Randy Ploetz said scientists found three more beetles that can carry the tree-killing disease. Ploetz says the study shows that focusing on redbay ambrosia beetles may not save avocado trees from laurel wilt. Jonathan Crane at the university’s Tropical Research and Education Center in Homestead says avocado growers “have known for some time that other ambrosia beetle species” can spread disease in their groves…

St. George, Utah, Independent, April 13, 2017: Topping hurts trees

Every year, there are beautiful trees whose lives will be cut short by improper pruning. The indiscriminate cutting of tree branches can ruin your trees. St. George is a unique city in the desert southwest. We are a community with a wonderful urban forest. Our downtown streets are lined with shade trees. We as a community take pride in our “oasis” in the desert. Our trees provide shade and relief from our hot summer sun. The practice of topping causes a tree to go into stress mode. When a tree is topped, 50 to 100 percent of leafed branches are removed, taking away the tree’s food source. Trees store carbohydrates or “food” in their branches, trunks, and roots. Topping a tree can remove valuable energy stores and a tree’s ability to perform photosynthesis. When all of a tree’s leaves are removed, a tree will sprout water suckers from dormant buds along the remaining branches. Water suckers are fast growing branches that have a weak attachment to the tree’s trunk. These branches are where future branch failures can and will occur…

Seattle, Washington, Times, April 13, 2017: Seeing the forest for the trees: What one oak tells us about climate change

It is the time we wait for all winter, as spring’s first green leaves unfurl. The joy we feel is the thrill of a new season, kicked off by the masterful work of trees. Trees, it turns out, are up to far more marvelous things than we ordinarily think. Mute, passive, unmoving, solitary? Actually, no. Trees talk. Move. Breathe. So numerous are their abilities, and so embedded in a continuum of thrumming life are trees, that to know even one well is to be dazzled. I learned this from one tree, in particular: a big oak I got to know over the better part of two years, from the tossed sunlit glory of its airy crown, to the small skitter of busy lives in the soil at its roots. It all started by working with a scientist and his research crew, probing deeply into the lives of trees at Harvard Forest, a 4,000-acre laboratory of mostly scrappy third-growth trees, on former pastures and farms west of Boston. I was interested as a journalist in looking for new and better ways to tell the story of our changing climate. It has been a yawner for too many — a distant debate about treaties, dueling science and doomsday scenarios. The stakes are high: the function of natural processes; the viability of habitats; even the survival of species, including our own. But the facts won’t matter if we can’t get anyone to pay attention…

Gizmodo, April 13, 2017: Apple is buying all the good trees for its new campus, and the tree people are fighting back

A tough truth about Apple is making headlines this week, and you’d better hold on to your butts, because it is salacious. Apparently, Apple is snatching up all the very best trees for its new campus, leaving local tree purchasers scrambling for solutions. The scoop was buried in a recent San Francisco Chronicle story about construction of the Transbay Transit Center in San Francisco. One of the futuristic travel station’s highlights is a 5.4-acre green roof which will eventually feature 469 trees (nice). The paper’s J.K. Dineen reports on the struggle to find all those trees: Buying trees is a surprisingly cutthroat business. And it’s been especially challenging to locate desirable specimens because Apple has been buying up 3,000 trees for its new Cupertino headquarters. When Greenspan and Trollip found a tree they fancied they would “tag it” with a locking yellow tag, so that nobody else — like Apple — could get it. Eventually all the tagged trees were moved to a nursery in Sunol, where the transbay project team leased 4 acres. Whoa, Greenspan and Trollip are taking this very seriously. And they should be…

Atlanta, Georgia, Journal-Constitution, April 13, 2017: Trees inside sewer lines? DeKalb spends $7.2M to clean them out

For more than 50 years, trees took root and grease built up inside DeKalb County sewer lines. These blocked pipes caused repeated sewage spills and threatened the county’s ability to grow. The DeKalb Board of Commissioners voted 7-0 on Tuesday to clean congested sewer trunk lines for the first time in decades. Government officials hope the $7.2 million cleaning contract will allow the county to add sewer capacity without having to spend far more money on new infrastructure…

San Francisco, California, SFist, April 12, 2017: The Great tree fight: How Eucalyptus Trees have divided Bay Area environmentalists for decades

If you’re relatively new to the Bay Area, and particularly if you’ve never lived or spent much time in the East Bay, it will be news to you that a great many people passionately despise the eucalyptus trees that are clustered throughout the Oakland and Berkeley hills, and around the UC Berkeley campus. The bath-shop-scented, stripe-barked, tall beauties, technically called Tasmanian blue gum trees, have elongated leaves that create a pleasant hushed rustling in the breeze. But they are not native to the Bay Area, and they’ve long been pointed to as a primary culprit in the Oakland Hills Fire of 1991. Many people still love them, have tied themselves naked to their trunks to protect them, and they deny that they have any special flammability and see them as vital habitat for birds and other species. These eucalyptus lovers also don’t think that whatever could be planted to replace them will be any less of a fire hazard in what is already a fire-prone region. The Chronicle’s East Bay columnist Chip Johnson came down on the side of “chop them all down” in a 2015 column about the trees, arguing that “human life tops the list” of things we should be worried about preserving. At the time, a project was set to begin with the help of a $4.6 million federal grant to thin the forest along a 20-mile stretch of the East Bay ridgeline, cutting down eucalyptus trees along with diseased or dying Monterey pines and other non-native species. Johnson quotes a UC Berkeley professor of fire sciences, Scott Stephens, who says the eucalyptus trees are absolutely a hazard even if they aren’t close by. He points to the university’s effort to clear trees on the upper slopes surrounding the campus because the trees can burn at such high intensity that they can deposit embers more than a mile downslope from them. “Given the conditions of the hills and the vulnerabilities of the people living in the area, it’s the right thing to do,” Stephens said, “and the next time we get a great, big fire, we’re going to be happy that we did this…”

Syracuse, New York, WSYR Radio, April 12, 2017: Syracuse Man Arrested For Tree Vandalism

A Syracuse man has been arrested after city police say he caused more than 25 thousand dollars in damage in several city parks. 30 year old David Thomas is accused of using his car to run down over 60 tree at those parks. The parks that were hit include McChesney Park, Schiller Park and Rose Hill Cemetery. Thomas has now been charged with criminal mischief and city police say they don’t know the reason Thomas wanted to damage the trees. Most of the small trees were completely uprooted and damaged to the point that they are now expected to survive if they were replanted…

Pasadena, California, KPCC(FM), April 12, 2017: There are 60,000-plus tree species worldwide, scientists say

Wondering how many kinds of trees there are? There’s now a database that can answer that. Scientists from the U.K.-based Botanic Gardens Conservation International say they have compiled the first-ever comprehensive list of all known tree species, totaling 60,065 different kinds. The database includes information about where each species is found geographically. More than half of those species are only found in one country, the researchers wrote in the Journal of Sustainable Forestry. And many of them are threatened with extinction. The researchers hope the database, called GlobalTreeSearch, will provide a practical tool for conservationists. It could help to develop “species-specific action” for threatened trees, they stated, “as individual tree species face threats that are unique to that species…

Seattle, Washington, KIRO Radio, April 12, 2017: Worker killed in logging accident at Snoqualmie Tree Farm

A worker died from injuries received while operating logging equipment on the Snoqualmie Tree Farm. On Tuesday at about 2 p.m., firefighters from the Snoqualmie Fire Department were called to a report that a logging worker had been seriously hurt while on the job at a site 26 miles into the tree farm. Fire crews were escorted to the site by the Campbell Global Timber Management security division. The trip took about an hour because of the rough terrain. When crews arrived, they found the victim about 500 yards down a steep embankment…

Mansfield, Ohio, News-Journal, April 10, 2017: ‘Shawshank Redemption’ tree – what was left, anyway – cut down

The last remaining vestiges of the tall oak tree beloved by fans of “The Shawshank Redemption” was taken down Saturday by a co-owner of the field in which it stood. Dan Dees said it was time for what was left of the damaged tree, on Pleasant Valley Road, near Malabar Farm State Park, to disappear. His father would like to farm that land, he said. The huge oak tree was featured in a scene in which Red (Morgan Freeman), paroled from prison, walked along a hayfield and removed stones from a rock wall where Andy (Tim Robbins) had buried money embezzled by the warden. The big oak. located a little east of the entrance to Malabar Farm State Park, was a popular stop on the Richland County Convention and Visitors Bureau’s “Shawshank Trail” driving tour, which took advantage of the movie’s wide popularity, encouraging tourists to visit some of the sites where “Shawshank” was filmed…

Agri-news, September 10, 2017: 10 steps to successful tree planting

Successful tree planting depends on a well-planned and executed approach. Lenny Farlee, Extension forester at Purdue University, shared advice about planting trees and shrubs for conservation purposes. “When we think about conservation planting, a lot of it started in the 1920s and ’30s in Indiana,” he said. “It was in relation to some pretty bad choices we had made in terms of landscape management. “There were a lot of agricultural practices done on land that couldn’t sustain those practices. It ended up in a lot of erosion.” Now trees often are planted to provide wildlife habitats, improve environmental quality, provide future timber production, sequester carbon and more. Farlee shared 10 tips for planting trees…

Windsor, Ontario, Star, April 10, 2017: Controversial tree cutting to start next week in transmission corridor

A Hydro One official said Tuesday 100 “danger trees” will be cut down within a six-kilometre high-voltage transmission corridor between LaSalle and Windsor but denies there would be any clear-cutting. LaSalle Mayor Ken Antaya said he heard clear-cutting was the plan for the corridor linking Brunet Park to Windsor’s Keith transmission station, a route which slices through the town’s environmentally sensitive LaSalle Woodlot. “The character of the entire woodlot would be destroyed,” Antaya said, who has called on Hydro One to handle the situation in its right-of-way “in an accountable way.” On Tuesday, the utility was trying to allay concerns. It held a morning news conference followed by an afternoon meeting with Antaya and town councillors to explain its intent. Hydro One area superintendent Jake Zink told the Star there is no plan to clear-cut and create a meadow through the corridor, which runs for two kilometres in LaSalle, from Brunet Park to Todd Lane, and four kilometres in Windsor from Todd Lane to the transmission station. Zink said a total of about 100 “danger trees” need to be taken down, 60 to 65 of them in LaSalle…

Santa Barbara, California, KEYT-TV, April 10, 2017: Man killed in tree-trimming accident near Gaviota identified

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office has identified 38-year-old Carpinteria resident Marcelino Gorostieta as the man tragically killed in Monday’s tree trimming accident at Hollister Ranch near Gaviota. The Santa Barbara County Fire Department was dispatched to the ranch at 10 a.m. but medical personnel pronounced the man dead at the scene, according to Santa Barbara County Fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni. The victim has not been identified pending next-of-kin notification. The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Coroner’s Office is investigating the death…

New York City The Wall Street Journal, April 9, 2017: The oak that shaded George Washington

In a few weeks, my town will bid farewell to its eldest resident, departing this world at age 600. Or 550 or 500—no one knows for sure. The great white oak standing beside the Presbyterian Church in the center of town is one of the oldest of its kind in North America. Even before the announcement last fall that the ailing tree could not be saved, visitors had been arriving in steady streams to gaze at the barren branches, trimmed and truncated—the remains of a once-massive canopy shading the tombstones of 35 Revolutionary War veterans. It’s strange that a tree could elicit feelings normally reserved for a loved one. But that’s exactly the way many think of the great oak: as a beloved figure around which the town grew from a small log cabin built 300 years ago…

Washington, D.C., WJLA-TV, April 10, 2017: Cherry trees damaged by cold temps, tornado in D.C. to be replaced

Days after an EF-0 tornado hopped around the Tidal Basin, a path of destruction is left behind. Twisted branches are scattered, cordoned off by yellow caution tape. Tree trunks are snapped like matchwood. Debris is piled up, among the sawed-off remains of giant trunks. “Mother Nature’s a beast,” says Dan Marcy, a visitor from New York state. “This is a little surprising. I was unaware a tornado that came through last week.” The shriek of chainsaws and the roar of wood chippers echoed across the basin Friday. The National Park Service says nine trees were damaged or destroyed by the storm. Four of them were cherry trees…

AP, April 10, 2017: Forget roses and birds. These folks like their big trees

A program in New Hampshire is working to protect the state’s vast forests, one tree at a time. Known as the New Hampshire Big Tree Program, it encourages residents to search the city’s streets, backyards and woods for the state’s largest trees. Then, a team of volunteers goes out to measure a tree’s circumference, height and crown to determine if they are county or state champs — or just leafy pretenders. More than 700 champions so far have been identified, including 10 that are the biggest in the country. The hope is that by searching for champions, residents will be motivated to protect forests from threats like development and forest pests…

Outdoor News, April 10, 2017, Wisconsin birch trees axed by thieves

People with axes and chain saws are plundering parks, forests and private land in Wisconsin’s Northwoods to cut down thousands of white birch trees. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources held a meeting late last week for law enforcement agencies, county foresters and others to address the issue, the Journal Sentinel reported. A story documenting similar activity in northern Minnesota, too, appeared last week on the Outdoor Newswebsite. And, it appears, the incidents are driven by the same thing. Natural resources department warden David Zebro said that many of the trees are sold to decorate homes, businesses and weddings. “It appears to be all market-driven,” Zebro said. “The ornamental market people are paying a lot of money for these types of birch trees. We didn’t see this type of issue a year or two ago, but it’s certainly here now…”Middletown, New York, Times-Herald, April 9, 2017: Residents angry over tree-clearing in Woodbury Junction development

Jaime Walker used to have a line of trees and bushes as a screen of privacy behind the new house she bought four years ago in the partially built Woodbury Junction development. That all disappeared one Saturday last month while she wasn’t home. At the builder’s behest, tree cutters mowed down all vegetation across the hill behind her backyard. They took down some trees on her property as collateral damage and also cleared part of what was supposed to be protected green space. Construction has resumed in earnest at Woodbury Junction, just a little over a year after a Brooklyn developer paid $35.5 million for 327 undeveloped building lots in the stalled, 451-home project. Building permits have been issued for the next dozen homes, roads are being built, and formerly empty houses and vacant building lots have been sold. But residents who moved there before the project changed hands have watched with mounting frustration as old problems with the development persist and new ones – like the unexpected tree clearing – crop up…

Waterloo, Iowa, KWWL-TV, April 9, 2017: Cedar Falls stops ash tree removal to seek borer treatment

The city of Cedar Falls is halting its removal of healthy ash trees to consider treatment alternatives in the wake of destruction by an invasive insect. City director of municipal operations Mark Ripplinger tells the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier that he recently suspended the removal of healthy ash trees after learning of advancements in treatment of trees infected by the emerald ash borer. Ripplinger says his staff will present a plan by May 1 to the council to allow property owners to treat ash trees in the right of way adjacent to their property at their own expense. So far, the city has removed about 900 ash trees

San Francisco, California, Chronicle, April 8, 2017: California’s huge tree die-off expected to slow after wet winter

California’s extraordinarily wet winter didn’t just end the drought. It’s likely to mean a turnaround for the state’s dying forests. After five years of dry weather unleashed unparalleled havoc on trees from Yosemite to the Central Coast — leaving vast stands of pine too parched to fight pests and reducing entire mountainsides to browning wastelands — a forecast by the U.S. Forest Service suggests the die-off will slow this year. The projection, made public earlier this year, is short on specifics. But it mirrors the opinion of many forestry experts who say fewer trees will perish as rainy weather helps California’s woodlands regain their natural defenses against the ravenous bark beetle. “When we’ve had huge precipitation years, the mortality declines in the same or next year,” said Sheri Smith, a regional entomologist for the Forest Service. “It’s not like there isn’t going to be any new mortality, but we’re going to see a tremendous drop…”

Gardening Know How, April 9, 2017: Oak tree gall mites: learn how to get rid of oak mites

Oak leaf gall mites are more of a problem for humans than for oak trees. These insects live inside the galls on oak leaves. If they leave the galls in search of other food, they can be a true nuisance. Their bites are itchy and painful. So exactly what are oak leaf mites? What is effective in treating for oak mites? If you want more information on how to get rid of oak mites, also called oak leaf itch mites, read on. Oak tree gall mites are tiny parasites that attack gall larvae on oak leaves. When we say tiny, we mean tiny! You may not be able to spot one of these mites without a magnifying glass. The female and male oak tree gall mites mate. Once the females are fertilized, they enter the gall and paralyze the larvae with their venom. The female mites then feed on the larvae until their offspring emerge. An entire generation of oak mites can emerge in a single week, which means that the mite population can swell rapidly. Once the oak tree gall mites have eaten the gall larvae, they leave in search of other food…

Staten Island Live, April 6, 2017: City tree maintenance will get more transparent

City tree maintenance won’t be a mys-tree anymore. The Parks Department will have to post information about tree pruning, removals, planting and tree-related sidewalk inspections and repairs online under a bill from Minority Leader Steven Matteo that passed the Council on Wednesday. The city’s pruning program is responsible for some 650,000 street trees citywide, including roughly 76,400 on Staten Island. “This legislation will bring more accountability and predictability to a tree and sidewalk repair program that frankly has been opaque and seemingly arbitrary,” Matteo (R-Mid-Island) said in a statement. “The public has a right to know where and when these repairs are taking place, and that the City is properly managing our resources to reduce the risk of personal injury and property damage from falling branches, loose stumps or broken sidewalks…”

Kingston, New York, Daily Freeman, April 6, 2017: Village of Rhinebeck orders four trees taken down on private properties

The village has told the owners of four properties to have dying trees cut down — at their own expense. The trees, which village officials say are at risk of losing large branches, are at 32 Chestnut St., 46 Livingston St., 36 Mulberry St. and 47 Mulberry St. “They were brought to our attention by the Highway Department as safety hazards,” said village Tree Commission Chairwoman Meg Crawford. Crawford said woodpeckers have been “going after these trees … because they have a lot of insects inside them, which indicates rot inside the tree.” Members of the Village Board said Dave’s Tree Service has provided an estimate of $3,700 to take down all four trees but that it will be up to property owners to decide who does the work…

New York City, Wall Street Journal, April 4, 2017: ‘Pokémon Go’ suit makes case for virtual trespassing

Annoyed homeowners say “Pokémon Go” players have gone too far in their quest to master the smartphone game—and they want the company behind the hit application to be held responsible. A federal judge is poised to decide if a lawsuit alleging the game’s developer violated trespass and negligence laws can go forward, a ruling that could have broader implications for makers of games or other software that send users to specific locations. “Pokémon Go,” based on the Japanese franchise popularized by Nintendo Co. in the 1990s, sends millions of players each day searching for Pokémon characters on a digital map. Players gain points by catching the monsters, which appear superimposed into the real world through location-tracking technology and augmented reality. The court decision is expected in the coming weeks in a case brought by residents in New Jersey, Florida and Michigan. They say the popular game caused hordes of people to physically trespass on their land. They also say the game violates their rights by placing virtual game pieces on or near their private property without their permission…

UPI, April 6, 2017: Laser sensors spot trees with larch disease

Researchers are using laser sensors to locate trees threatened by deadly larch tree disease. Scientists at Leicester University partnered with aerial mapping company Bluesky to conduct a series of laser scanning surveys, or LiDAR surveys, in England and Scotland. Larch tree disease is caused by the fungus-like pathogen Phytophthora ramorum. The disease can affect a variety of tree and plant species. In Britain, the pathogen has proved particularly deadly to Japanese larch trees — hints the name. In the United States, particularly in Oregon and Washington, the disease is called sudden oak death, named for its most common victim. The pathogen was first identified in Britain in 2002 and has since infected several high-profile forests, including Epping Forest and the Forest of Dean…

Parsippany, New Jersey, Daily Record, April 5, 2017: Denville tree-farm harvest alarms neighbors

A rare harvest last week at a Denville tree farm alarmed some neighboring residents along Zeek Road, some fearing a developer had started to clear acreage for a construction project they had not been informed about. The culling, however, was a state-authorized selective harvest of oaks and poplars on the long-established, 22-acre farm-assessed property just south of Route 10, the existence of which some residents may have been unaware of, according to Denville Administrator Steven Ward. “We received numerous calls from concerned residents about trees being cut down there,” Ward said. “But that property is in fact assessed as a tree farm. Apparently there had not been a harvest there for several years, and some people were jumping to conclusions that they were putting up housing or something like that. That is simply not the case.” Ward and Tim Schrak, owner of Deer Spring Farm, differ on the details, but the harvest resumed on Monday, even as neighbors continued to speculate about possible development there on Facebook. Some claimed that 1,200 units of low-income housing were going in there, while others debated if the property was in Denville or Parsippany…

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Journal-Sentinel, April 5, 2017: Tree thief in Brookfield surrenders to police

A dozen arborvitae trees that separated two businesses in Brookfield disappeared several days ago and when police examined security video they saw two men had dug up the fragrant conifers in the dead of night before driving away. The tree heist happened around 2 a.m. on March 27 between Lee’s Dairy Treat, 14040 W. Greenfield Ave. and an acupuncture business. The thieves were careful to swivel a security camera away from the scene while they spent almost two hours uprooting 12 arborvitaes and two flowering trees and stacking them on a small trailer. But when one of the thieves pushed the security camera back to its original position he didn’t know about a second camera which recorded their actions as they drove away around 3:45 a.m. “It’s kind of an odd theft. I can’t tell you the last time landscape items were removed like this,” said City of Brookfield Police Capt. Tom Vento…

Bergen County, New Jersey, Record, April 5, 2017: Wyckoff adds penalties for tree removal violations

The Township Committee approved an ordinance Tuesday that encourages tree preservation during construction and imposes fines for violations. A second ordinance setting similar guidelines for trees in the area of a sewer project was sent to the Board of Health for review. Both ordinances set procedures to identify and preserve trees with diameters of six inches or greater. The guidelines adopted Tuesday would require submission of a landscaping plan showing “all existing and proposed trees and vegetation.” Preservation method details for all existing trees, such as protective fencing, would have to be shown on the plan. Soil cannot be stockpiled in a tree-protection zone. Protective barriers would have to be in place prior to the start of construction, and must be maintained throughout the project’s length…

Columbus, Georgia, Ledger-Enquirer, April 5, 2017: If a tree lands on your house, who pays for it?

The violent weather we’re seeing this week raises a question. If a tree falls and hits your house, are you covered by insurance? Most homeowner insurance policies are fairly straightforward, says the Insurance Information Institute (III). If a tree hits your house or other covered structure on your property, standard policies generally provide coverage for the damage the tree inflicts. It also is irrelevant whether or not you own the tree, the III says. If it hits your house, you can file a claim with your insurance company. Now, if the tree was on a neighbor’s property, your insurer may try to collect some damages from the neighbor’s insurance company, but that’s between them. This often happens if the neighbor’s tree was in poor health or poorly maintained…

San Luis Obispo, California, Tribune, April 4, 2017: Grover Beach puts Ramona Park tree back on the chopping block

It was a short-lived reprieve. A week after Grover Beach announced it would remove a 90-foot Monterey cypress tree from Ramona Garden Park and then just as quickly delayed that decision amid resident pushback, it looks like the tree will once again be on the chopping block at the end of the month. The Grover Beach City Council on Monday directed staff to tentatively go through with removing the tree, unless a second arborist’s review can prove the tree does not pose a public safety risk. “Look, public safety is our top priority,” Mayor John Shoals said. “We have an arborist saying this tree is diseased and poses a threat and risk. I could not live with myself if something happened to anyone that’s in that park, walking under that tree, who lives on that street. So we’re going to move forward with expediency.” An arborist hired by the city examined the tree in August and found signs of decay throughout the massive tree. According to the arborist’s report, the decay increases the risk of falling branches. Because of that, the arborist recommended removing the tree…

Dallas, Texas, News, April 4, 2017: 20-year-old electrocuted while trimming trees in Colleyville

A 20-year-old man died after reportedly being electrocuted while trimming trees in Colleyville on Monday afternoon. Luis Calderon of Carrollton died just after 5 p.m., according to the Tarrant County medical examiner. Calderon was harnessed in a tree to trim branches when the saw touched a power line, police told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. He immediately lost consciousness, and other workers pulled him down as they called for help…

New York City, The Times, March 31, 2017: In Poland’s Crooked Forest, a mystery with no straight answer

In Poland’s Krzywy Las, or Crooked Forest, the pine trees look like potbellied stick figures. On some 400 trees, the trunks buckle out 90 degrees, creating bark-covered bellies that drag just above the earth, oddly, all pointing in the same direction — north. No one knows for certain what caused this unusual stand of trees in a protected forest, just outside the town of Gryfino, Poland. The town was mostly destroyed during World War II, and the truth of the forest was lost with it. Strangely bent trees exist in other parts of the world, but not in such great numbers nor as neatly arranged as in Poland’s Crooked Forest. You can visit this little patch of land in northwest Poland any time, but the cusp of spring is the perfect chance to see the trees in winter’s bare-boned attire, without its bitter temperatures…

The Atlantic, April 4, 2017: Trees have their own songs

Just as birders can identify birds by their melodious calls, David George Haskell can distinguish trees by their sounds. The task is especially easy when it rains, as it so often does in the Ecuadorian rainforest. Depending on the shapes and sizes of their leaves, the different plants react to falling drops by producing “a splatter of metallic sparks” or “a low, clean, woody thump” or “a speed-typist’s clatter.” Every species has its own song. Train your ears (and abandon the distracting echoes of a plastic rain jacket) and you can carry out a botanical census through sound alone. “I’ve taught ornithology to students for many years,” says Haskell, a natural history writer and professor of biology at Sewanee. “And I challenge my students: Okay, now that you’ve learned the songs of 100 birds, your task is to learn the sounds of 20 trees. Can you tell an oak from a maple by ear? I have them go out, pour their attention into their ears, and harvest sounds. It’s an almost meditative experience. And from that, you realize that trees sound different, and they have amazing sounds coming from them. Our unaided ears can hear how a maple tree changes its voice as a soft leaves of early spring change into the dying one of autumn…”

San Jose, California, Mercury News, April 3, 2017: PG&E tree pruning not as reckless as feared

Question: On my way home today, driving down Oak Grove Road, I was dismayed to see Davey tree service trucks and evidence of heavy tree pruning. I stopped and asked who had contracted the company, and was told it was PG&E. Who at PG&E would have authorized extensive tree pruning at this time of year? Winter is basically over, and we are now into the middle of nesting season. Could they not have done this much earlier in the year or later?

Answer: I was disheartened to hear about this, but what I found out might surprise and please you. It did me. I spoke with Tamar Sarkissian, spokeswoman for PG&E, who said a lot of thought and caution go into what the company calls its vegetation management. First of all, she says, all contractors receive annual training on how trees should be trimmed and what precautions to take. Before any tree is pruned, it is inspected for nests. If active nests are found, pruning is canceled immediately and rescheduled for the autumn, when nesting season ends…

Dallas, Texas, KXAS-TV, April 3, 2017: Neighbors in Lake Highlands help save a decades-old tree

A fight over a decades-old tree in a Dallas neighborhood leaves one man in handcuffs.The tree in the Lake Highlands area has long served as a photo opportunity for neighbors. “It provided this great horizontal bench that everyone sat on for pictures and the children climbed on it,” said Amy Martin, who lives in the area. On Thursday, neighbors said a man with a chainsaw began buzzing his way through the place that served as a playground for so many. Martin said neighbors confronted the man, 65-year-old Albert Santos, and told him to stop…

Wall Street Journal, April 3, 2017: Hey, You! Stop eating my yard!

In late April, Tim Marks’s 40 acres of Maine forest land faces an infestation: fiddlehead foragers. The retired state trooper spots dozens of them traipsing across his property, stuffing burlap sacks with the greens to sell at farmers markets. He has shooed them off, and even put up trail cameras. But they’ll go as far as to sneak back in at night, with headlamps. “I’m a victim of fiddlehead theft,” he sighed. “It’s ridiculous.” Such tensions are becoming more common in Maine, where the rise in popularity of wild vegetation like fiddleheads, ramps, mushrooms and seaweed for uses from gourmet cooking to nutritional supplements is causing friction between foragers and landowners. It is also threatening the state’s unusual and centuries-old tradition of allowing public access to private property…

Detroit, Michigan, Michigan Chronicle, April 3, 2017: Detroit to complete removal of 3,000 dead city-owned trees ahead of schedule

City crews will complete the first phase of an effort to remove 6,000 dead trees by the end of 2017. The second batch of 3,000 dead trees will begin coming down in July. City of Detroit General Services Department crews will remove the last of 3,000 dead trees located on city property they began removing last August. The work was not expected to be completed until early this summer, but is being finished ahead of schedule. Another 3,000 dead trees, also lost to disease and age, will begin coming down in July…

Dallas, Texas, Dallas News, April 2, 2017: A man tried to cut down a beloved tree in White Rock, but neighbors weren’t having it

Neighbors in the White Rock area of Dallas stepped in Thursday to stop a man who was spotted taking a chainsaw to a beloved tree. A woman passing by saw the man cutting up an old pecan tree in the 900 block of Peavy Road, near Lake Highlands Drive, and loading the wood into a trailer, according to a post from a neighbor on Nextdoor. The woman told him what he was doing was illegal and called the police. Seeing what was happening, a man used his car to block in the man’s pickup until the police came, the post said. The man reportedly told police that he had permission from the city to cut trees downed by the storm, but had no paperwork…

Denver, Colorado, KDVR-TV, April 2, 2017: Controversial tree in Longmont to get the ax on Monday

A controversial tree in Longmont is scheduled to be cut down on Monday. Homeowners planted the cottonwood in the city’s right-of-way back in 1977. They said when they bought it from a local nursery, it was a male and didn’t produce cotton. But over time it switched genders, as trees can do, and it now produces cotton. And it’s about 60-feet-tall. An effort by neighbors led the city to decide to cut it down. City leaders cited two ordinances that deal with nuisance trees and cotton-producing trees. But the homeowners, their children and a group of supporters fought to stop the city from cutting down the tree…

Colorado Spring, Colorado, Gazette, April 2, 2017: With more tree removal than ever in Colorado Springs, forester plays hero and villain

Amid the wreckage Dennis Will pleads his case. This is his doing: this forest that feels less like a forest, with paths lined by once proud trunks of ponderosa pine and Douglas fir. The hillsides used to be covered by oak brush. Now the chipped remnants are scattered about with green needles and broken branches. “This is ground zero of what folks don’t like,” says Will, the Colorado Springs forester examining the site of his latest dirty deed that he’d like people to know is necessary. He’s having to explain this project more than any of the others he’s overseen with the city. It is, after all, the largest tree removal project in Springs history, spanning 103 acres in Stratton Open Space. And some frequent hikers and bikers of this popular area don’t appreciate the facelift…

Minneapolis, Minnesota, Star Tribune, April 2, 2017: Birch tree bandits cut and run in Minnesota and Wisconsin

Thieves are illegally cutting down thousands of birch trees in northern Minnesota and Wisconsin to make a quick buck off city dwellers who love the paper-white logs, limbs and twigs in their home decor. The thefts have caught county sheriffs and state natural resource officials by surprise over the past few months, sending them scrambling to determine how big the problem is and how to keep it from getting worse. In the meantime, the thieves are leaving gaps in the northern landscape that will take at least a decade to refill with birch. Chief Deputy Mike Richter with the Washburn County Sheriff’s Office in Wisconsin was among those scratching their heads when word spread that swaths of birch saplings were being felled by crooks. “And then I learned some stuff about the market,” he said…

Phys.org, March 30, 2017: Researchers discover tree trunks act as methane source in upland forests

A new study from the University of Delaware is one of the first in the world to show that tree trunks in upland forests actually emit methane rather than store it, representing a new, previously unaccounted source of this powerful greenhouse gas. Methane is about 25 times stronger than carbon dioxide, with some estimates as high as 33 times stronger due to its effects when it is in the atmosphere. Because of methane’s global warming potential, identifying the sources and “sinks” or storehouses of this greenhouse gas is critical for measuring and understanding its implications across ecosystems. Upland forest soils usually take up and store methane, but this effect can be counteracted by methane emissions from tree trunks, the research team from UD’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources found. Their work is published in the scientific journal Ecosystems…

Jackson, Mississippi, WJTV, March 30, 2017: What makes a tree a threat during severe weather?

During severe storms, there’s a potential for trees and their limbs to fall. Brian Haley at Mid State Tree Service says you should keep an eye on trees, dead and alive. When pine trees die, the straw turns brown and bark falls off. Oaks often show their rot on the outside. Haley says some of these oaks along Highway 468 in Rankin County are dead or have dead limbs. He says oak roots are often shallow. “So when the ground is real wet they tend to get blown over,” He said. “They uproot real easy. Of course any tree dead is a threat at any time, much less in a storm…”

Oakland, California, Eastbay Times, March 30, 2017: Livermore tree saved: Neighbors get wish granted, but at what cost?

A 300-year-old oak tree will live to see another day. The Livermore Area and Recreation Park District agreed Wednesday to let the ailing tree at Sunset Park stand. But the decision comes with a sacrifice: The playground set under the tree will have to be removed, and will cost $1.2 million to relocate and replace. The valley oak may have had chainsaws in its future if it were not for some neighbors who caused a stir. When residents Nischal Belthangady, Terry McCune and others found out the park district was considering chopping down the tree, they organized a petition that gathered 500 signatures against the plan. “All of us have been eating, drinking and sleeping this oak for many months, so it’s nice to have it come to an end,” McCune said. “It is absolutely wonderful. They did the right thing…”

Bedlam Farm, March 30, 2017: Walk In The Woods: Trees Age And Die Gracefully

I walked in the deep woods this morning for the first time in months, there is still some snow up there. To mark the occasion – we love these woods (Petzval lens) I read a chapter from Peter Wohllenben’s wonderful book The Hidden Life Of Trees. Appropriately enough, I turned to chapter ll, Trees Age Gracefully. I can’t even count the number of truths about trees than I can relate to, I am a tree lover and a tree-hugger now. Wohllenben tell us that trees age like us, only at a different pace. As our hair thins, their crown thinks. They widen and add fat to help themselves against the cold. They get wrinkles, sometimes they are painful. Trees, he says, are not capable of maintaining their mature height for long because its energy levels diminish slowly over the years (a tree ages much more slowly than humans, many live for hundreds of years. At first, the tree can no longer manage to feed its topmost twigs, and these die off…

St. Paul, Minnesota, Pioneer Press, March 28, 2017: Hmong Village and an unlicensed tree trimmer are in hot water after 104 trees cut down in St. Paul

Unlicensed tree trimmers removing a grove for a parking lot expansion at the Hmong Village Shopping Center bit off more than they were allowed to chew in early March. A and A Tree Service advertised their services on metal stands and handed out brochures offering Hmong customers a 10 percent discount — and then removed 22 city-owned trees near Johnson Parkway that were not in their “scope of work” or project area, according to St. Paul city staff. On March 8, an inspector with the Department of Safety and Inspections ordered them to cease operations. “We told them they can’t operate in St. Paul,” said Robert Humphrey, a spokesman for the Department of Safety and Inspections. “We license tree trimmers, and there’s a good reason for that — to make sure they’re bonded and insured…”

Training Daily Advisor, March 29, 2017: Tree-trimming safety training

As spring blooms across the country, outdoor work becomes more common. Today, we consider how a tree-trimming accident led to a fatality and OSHA’s safety recommendations for tree-trimming activities. Several years ago, a 42-year-old employee of a real estate company was struck and killed by a large section of a 60-foot (ft)-tall eucalyptus tree he was helping to remove from the employer’s property. Cal/OSHA investigated the incident and found that neither he nor any of the other construction laborers employed by the company had the experience or training to safely cut down a tree of that size, leading to nearly $92,000 in fines for his employer. The company was cited with 13 violations, eight of which were classified as serious. According to Cal/OSHA, the company failed to employ a qualified tree worker, which is required by law to direct all work related to tree trimming, tree repair, or removal of trees exceeding 15 ft in height. In addition, workers were not trained to use the aerial lift that elevated them to cut the tree, and were not provided with eye protection or a fall protection harness while working on the lift. “Workers at construction sites are frequently exposed to serious hazards, and safety training is essential to prevent serious injuries and fatalities. This incident is a vivid reminder of what can go wrong when employers don’t have proper safety procedures in place,” said Christine Baker, director of California’s Department of Industrial Relations…

Dallas, Texas, WFAA-TV, March 29, 2017: Tree removal companies see surge after overnight storm in East Dallas

One of the hardest hit areas during overnight storms was near White Rock Lake in East Dallas. More than 80 mph winds were reported in that area. “That’s what woke me up,” said Kelly Secker, who said she and her husband heard a loud bang and jumped out of bed. “It was like an explosion sound,” she said. “I had no idea until we came up to the window.” Secker said she couldn’t believe it when she saw her neighbors tree on top of her house. “The bath and shower were destroyed and the rest of the tree came through the attic and punched holes,” she said. “My husband and I were up there with buckets trying to catch the rain…”

Columbus, Indiana, Republic, March 29, 2017: Pecan weevil affecting some residential trees in New Mexico

The state Department of Agriculture says a small number of residential pecan trees are being affected by pecan weevil in five eastern New Mexico cities. Pecan weevil is a significant insect pest of pecan and is not recognized as being established in New Mexico commercial orchards. Recently, pecan weevil has been identified in residential trees in Clovis, Roswell and Lovington. Additional pecan trees were identified with pecan weevil in Artesia and Hobbs. As a result, the agriculture department has extended the original 60-day quarantine, adding an additional 90 days…

Washington, D.C., Post, March 28, 2017: For tree lovers and woodworkers, there’s beauty in a burl

As you glance up into tree limbs, perhaps searching for some sign of spring in a swelling flower bud, your sight might be arrested by fat, rounded growths on the bark. On some trees, these hard, woody outgrowths — called burls — stand out on an otherwise clear trunk like a goiter. On other trees, the whole trunk might be covered with these masses. If you’ve never noticed these growths before, don’t be alarmed. They cause little or no harm to the tree. That said, burls might — just might — indicate that the tree has been under stress. All sorts of things have been implicated as the cause of burls. For instance, a burl could grow in response to a limb rubbing against the bark, to chewing by insects or some other physical injury. Perhaps the tree experienced or is experiencing some environmental stress — temperatures too cold or too hot, not enough food or not enough sunlight, for example…

Addison, Illinois, Daily Herald, March 28, 2017: One dead, one critical after hitting power lines in Addison

One man died and a second was seriously injured Tuesday morning after making contact with ComEd power lines while cutting limbs from a tree near Villa and Myrick avenues in Addison. Killed in the accident was Jose Fulgencio-Hueramo, 51, of Melrose Park.Authorities said Fulgencio-Hueramo was knocked off a ladder and fell to the ground. He was in cardiac arrest when authorities arrived. He was taken to the emergency room at Adventist GlenOaks Hospital in Glendale Heights where he was pronounced dead at 11:48 a.m., the DuPage County coroner’s office said…

Santa Monica, California, Observer, March 28, 2017: If An old growth redwood tree falls in Santa Monica, does anyone hear it?

As Ecclesiastes said, there is a time for everything under heaven; a time to be born and a time to die. An old growth Redwood tree finally had to be taken down on 9th street. It had died during the drought, 18 or so months ago, and had become a hazard to the neighborhood. The City of Santa Monica, which has an active tree removal department called “Community forestry,” red tagged the tree on October 7, 2016. Several residents appealed the decision. On October 31st, we called the community forester’s office. Peter Provenzale, Urban Forest Supervisor, City of Santa Monica told us “We received another appeal last week as well. The adoration of the neighbors and the charm of the tree, the urban forestry division has decided to leave the redwood standing at this time. The tree is in decline and has significant dieback. We will re-inspect the tree in March 2017. At that point we will reassess the health and its overall vigor.” On March 28, 2017, on a day of high winds, a private crew came to take the tree down. The redwood was undeniably brown, a victim of the drought…

Gwinnett, Georgia, Daily Post, March 28, 2017: Dealing with storm damaged trees

Recently, there have been many news reports about trees causing damage to property as of the result of storms. They have brought down power lines, damaged vehicles, closed roads and even caused a few fatalities. The excessive rains of the past few weeks have saturated the soil increasing the susceptibility of the trees being damaged by high winds. The high-stress levels they have been under in recent years as a result of the prolonged drought, construction activities, and pest infestations have increased the chances of trees suffering damage. What should you do if you have trees damaged and blown down as a result of the storms? First and foremost, take the necessary safety precautions. Storm damaged trees can present dangers to homeowners. The trees could be in contact with electrical wires. Anyone touching the tree could be electrocuted. Contact your local power provider so they can assess the situation. Trees that are down or partially blown over can quickly shift position due to the uneven weight distribution. Avoid climbing on the tree or pulling on any limbs. You may be tempted to begin removing the damaged tree yourself. However, doing so can lead to serious injury or death. If large sections of the tree are broken or hanging, or if the work will require the use of a ladder or chainsaw overhead, then a certified arborist should be consulted…

Salem, Massachusetts, News, March 27, 2017: Danvers condo owners take stand against tree clearing

A group of owners at the Royal Park Condominiums at 147 Sylvan St. are taking a stand after a contractor for the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company cut down at least seven trees at the front of their building to clear the right-of-way of an existing high-pressure natural gas pipeline. The residents were so upset about what happened last Tuesday that on Wednesday morning, around 6 a.m., they used their vehicles to block the driveway to keep out work crews. “They came in and in the first hour, they took down seven trees,” said Jennifer Fraser, one of the three trustees for the condominium association. On Tuesday, she said, the company cut down mature maple and pine trees and a cherry blossom tree. “It looks like a war zone,” Fraser said. She said the company plans to remove another 25 trees along the pipeline easement, which runs roughly parallel to the front of the long, two-story, 49-unit condominium building that dates to 1975. This area includes a wooded turnaround with parking spaces…

Hartford, Connecticut, Courant, March 27, 2017: Canterbury man killed in tree-cutting accident

A 32-year-old man cutting down a tree was killed when it fell on him Saturday afternoon, police said. Matthew Veloce was using a chainsaw to cut down a tree outside his home on Goodwin Road 2 when the accident happened, Sgt. Eric Haglund reported. Veloce was alone at the time. His wife found him trapped under the tree and called for help, police said. Quinnebaug Valley Emergency Communications got a report of a serious accident at 3:59 p.m. and dispatched an ambulance and firefighters. They sent a radio message at 4:13 that they’d freed the victim, but 11 minutes later reported that he had been pronounced dead…

Newburyport, Massachusetts, News, March 27, 2017: Tree Talk: Restoring the canopy, one tree at a time

Spring is here! Although we lost many trees to disease, old age and nor’easters this winter, they are slowly but surely being replaced, thanks to generous contributions and increased funding to the Tree Commission budget. You’ll soon see Jim McCarthy of Saltbox Financials on the corner of Route 1 and Pond Street planting two October Glory maples. Five Cents Savings Bank on State Street will have a new honey locust. Four more cherry trees will suddenly appear magically, planted by little elves (Friends of Newburyport Trees and Tree Commission volunteers) at Bartlet Mall and a copper beech will provide a shady spot for sitting by the Frog Pond where the old willow once stood. Twenty new trees are projected to be planted on High Street between Atkinson Common and the Newbury line, 19 more in spring 2018. Seventy more sites have been selected to complete the gateway project on High Street within five years. And finally, coming this spring to Fair, Kent, Merrill, Forrester, the corner of Washington and Olive streets are 14 different varieties of cherry, maple, gingko, elm, hornbeam, oak, honey locust and Ivory Silk lilac trees. For each new tree planted, the Tree Commission must budget $250 for its purchase, $150 for planting and $240 for a 2-year service provided by a watering contractor every week from May 15 through Sept. 15. Friends of Battis Grove, the Newburyport Horticultural Society and the Newburyport Garden Club have also gifted money to FoNT to help make this possible. At its March meeting, the Budget and Finance Committee of the City Council approved $10,000 free cash to go toward the purchase of more street trees. The Tree Commission has requested an increase for the FY 2018 tree budget to $20,000, up from $15,000. Without these increases, all or at least part of the spring and fall 2018 neighborhood planting programs would have to be suspended…

Seattle, Washington, Times, March 27, 2017: D.C.’s cherry trees reached peak bloom, parks service says

The National Park Service says Washington’s famous cherry trees reached peak bloom over the weekend. The National Park Service says on its website that peak bloom was reached Saturday. This year’s bloom was different from in the past because cold weather killed half of the blossoms on the famous trees just as they were reaching peak bloom. Peak bloom is normally defined as the day when 70 percent of the blossoms are open on the Yoshino cherry trees around the Tidal Basin. But that didn’t happen this year because half of those blossoms were killed as a result of the cold. Officials defined peak bloom as the day 70 percent of the remaining blossoms were open…

Paonia, Colorado, High Country News, March 20, 2017: Busting the tree ring

The clearing that tree poachers call the Slaughterhouse lies in the northwest corner of Washington’s Gifford Pinchot National Forest, concealed behind the wall of hemlock and cedar that edges Forest Road 25. Ron Malamphy first visited the Slaughterhouse on a damp day near the end of winter in 2012. When he pushed into the glade, he found the scene matched the moniker. A jumble of felled bigleaf maple, chain-sawed into rough chunks, littered the forest floor, heartwood exposed to the chilly air. The most valuable wedges had been crudely hacked out, the rest left to rot. A patina of sawdust coated the moss and ferns. It looked, a federal prosecutor would say later, like a bomb had gone off. Cutting bigleaf maple is generally legal, with the right permits, on private and state land in Washington. In national forests, however, protections on old growth keep the tree strictly off-limits. But in Gifford Pinchot, the law’s arm didn’t reach too far…

Washington, D.C., The Daily Caller, March 26, 2017: Tree huggers at $63,550-per-year college SHOCKED to learn they can be punished for breaking rules

Swarthmore College — a fancypants, politically-correct hothouse bursting at the seams with wealthy white kids — has announced that it may punish five students for their role in a four-hour takeover of an administrative office last month. The students facing the prospect of punishment for breaking school rules have reacted with disappointment and confusion.The demonstrating students are part of Swarthmore’s Mountain Justice group, a campus organization which is perpetually demanding that Swarthmore’s trustees sell all the fossil-fuel stocks in the school’s luxurious $1.9 billion endowment portfolio…

Columbus, Georgia, Ledger-Enquirer, March 26, 2017: Not as simple as, ‘Hey, cut this tree down’

“The tree gives shade even to him who cuts off its boughs.” ― Sri Chaitanya, spiritual leader, circa 1500. I hope Sri’s right, because we’ve been cutting some boughs lately and are apt to be cutting more before it’s over. We wrote last week about a potentially dangerous situation on the back side of the tennis center at Cooper Creek Park. (More on that later.) The column got the attention of Concerned Reader Michael, who is alarmed about the condition of some trees along Lynch road between the Bull Creek Golf Course entrance and Matthew’s Elementary School down the road. “The trees along Bull Creek Golf Course, going along Lynch Road, all the way to Mathews Elementary, are some of the most dangerous looking trees in town,” Michael wrote. “Not sure if the golf course or the city is responsible/liable when something bad happens, but something must be done...”

Websnep.com, March 27, 2017: Questions Answered About Tree Cutting Services In Bronx, NY For Dangerous Trees

Individuals often plant trees close to their house because of the shade they provide. In addition to relaxing underneath a shade tree on a hot summer day, the leaves on a tree also provide shade for the house, and this makes it cooler inside. When trees that are growing close to the house become dangerous, it’s time to contact professional tree cutting services in Bronx NY. Trees that are in close proximity to a house can fall on the structure if they’re hit by lightning or damaged by high winds. If branches on the tree are unhealthy and die, they can also fall on the house and cause damage to the roof. If a limb falls straight down with enough force, it can penetrate the roofing materials and cause a hole in the roof. If a tree becomes damaged, homeowners should have it cut down by professionals before it falls…

Denver, Colorado, KUSA-TV, March 22, 2017: Judge gives green light to cut down controversial Longmont tree

A Boulder District Court judge ruled against a Longmont family trying to save the cottonwood tree in front of their home. The family said the shade from the tree was the only thing keeping their house cool because they can’t afford air conditioning. The city said the tree is on city property and it planned to cut it down after complaints for decades from neighbors regarding people’s health and other hazards.The tree was planted by Kent and Patty McDonald 38 years ago in honor of their three daughters.”This re presents family to her,” Quinn Finn, one of the McDonalds’ daughters, said…

Mahwah, New Jersey, Patch, March 22, 2017: 100-Foot Tree Falls On Car In Mahwah, Critically Injures Oakland Woman: Police

A 26-year-old woman was critically injured when a 100-foot-tall tree fell on her car on Ramapo Valley Road, police said. Officers provided first aid to the Oakland resident, who suffered “critical injuries” on her face and internally, said Police Chief James N. Batelli. The crash occurred near 888 Ramapo Valley Road and the woman was reportedly going south when the Hyundai Elantra was struck. Wind gusts were about 35 to 40 mph when the tree fell, Batelli said. The Mahwah Volunteer Ambulance Corps and paramedics from Valley Hospital took the woman to Hackensack University Medical Center…

Hartford, Connecticut, Courant, Match 22, 2017: Tree limb falls on school bus, killing driver

A school bus driver died Wednesday when a large tree limb fell on his school bus, causing him to crash, police said. No students were on board. The freak accident happened on Country Club Road near Tamara Circle in Avon about 8:50 a.m. as the driver was returning to the bus depot. It was a windy morning, and a large tree branch apparently fell on the roof over the cab of the bus, police said. The male driver lost control, and the bus struck a utility pole. He was only a short distance from the depot at the time of the accident, Lt. John Schmalberger said…

Tallahassee, Florida, WCTV, March 22, 2017: City moves for Urban Forest Master Plan, more work on tree removal program

The Tallahassee City Commission held a workshop Wednesday to discuss an Urban Forest Master Plan. This, after the Commission moved to develop a UFMP at its annual retreat in January. The idea is to create a plan for the City’s urban forest that tailors to the needs of the community. The urban forest is any and all trees and vegetation on public and private land within city boundaries. An Urban Forest Master Plan considers the current state, how the public feels, what they want from the trees and how to manage them internally; plus, it develops a path forward for achieving goals. To create this, staff recommended the Commission do four things. The first is to issue an RFP for a consultant to perform an Urban Tree Canopy Analysis, as well as direct a public engagement program. Secondly, to modify some of the policies regarding the electric utility tree trimming program. Third, to create a Storm Preparedness Pilot Program, which would offer loans to residents for tree removal of specific tree. And finally, to consider underground utility conversion in specific areas of the city…

Voice of America, March 21, 2017: Put rainfall, air conditioning back into trees, scientists say

International climate and environment agreements have a flaw which may jeopardize attempts to curb global warming quickly: they do not highlight the role trees play in creating rainfall and cooling the earth’s surface, 22 scientists said on Tuesday. Traditionally, international agreements have focused on how trees affect carbon levels in the atmosphere — living trees absorb carbon dioxide and deforestation releases carbon. While that is important, it should not be the priority, the scientists said, while presenting results of their research at a virtual forestry symposium…

Davenport, Iowa, KWQC-TV, March 21, 2017: Allergists see cases of tree pollen allergies to the QCA early this year

“It’s starting to get warm, there’s no more snow, hopefully there won’t be more snow,” Gilbert Sierra said. That warmer weather has Sierra and his son, GG Sierra out enjoying the first couple days of spring. “Just enjoying the weather, just you know going bike riding, going running, you know hopefully it’ll get a lot more warmer and then we can do more things outside you know,” Gilbert Sierra said. For GG, though, springtime brings seasonal allergies. “Just like a runny nose every once in a while and having to wipe it constantly,” GG Sierra said…

Science World Report, March 21, 2017: Microfluidic chip: Researchers present new ‘Tree-On-A-Chip,’ mimics pumping mechanism of trees & plants

Trees and plants have their own hydraulic pump system through that water travels up to the leaves from the roots and the sugar and the nutrients that the leaves produce travel down to the roots. The pumping mechanism is carried out through a system of tissues called xylem and phloem. Mimicking the pumping mechanism inside trees and plants, a group of MIT engineers have designed a microfluidic chip that they have termed as “tree-on-a-chip.” The newly designed chip works almost the same as the natural pumps inside trees and does not require any external pump or mechanical part, reported Phys.org. The microfluidic chip is able to move fluids through the chip at a steady flow rate for several days. Notably, researchers had developed the same tree-inspired pump systems before. However, they found that the designs would stop pumping within just a few minutes. In order to make the chip, the researchers put together two plastic slides and drilled small channels through the slides to represent xylem and phloem. They filled water in the xylem channel and water and sugar in the phloem channel. Next, they used a semipermeable material to separate the two slides to mimic the membrane between xylem and phloem, as noted by MIT News…

Los Angeles, California, Daily News, March 21, 2017: Gardening: Don’t expect many plants, trees to be low-maintenance

It’s a testimony to how tricky it is to grow plants in a doctor’s office that you hardly ever see them there. In fact, I cannot remember the last time I saw plants in a doctor’s office. Decades ago, when Bombeck, who authored a widely syndicated, humorous column on daily living, had her say on this subject, it provided a good laugh. At the same time (remember: in those days, most people read newspapers!), it had a chilling effect on growing greenery in health-care environments. Despite there being a boatload of literature on how beneficial it is, health-wise, to be surrounded by oxygenating and pollutant filtering indoor plants, hospital rooms and doctor offices have largely become greenery-free zones. While doctors can be excused for not wanting to fuss with plant care, what about us? These days, the most eye-catching words you can use to promote any plant species are “low maintenance.” Let’s be clear, however, that despite my own, all too frequent verbal obeisance to this imaginary concept, there is really no such thing as a low-maintenance plant — at least not in an urban environment…

Portland, Maine, Press Herald, March 20, 2017: State: Tree-cutting to aid Maine wildlife area going well, may be ahead of schedule

A controversial timber harvesting project at a popular central Maine wildlife area is likely ahead of schedule, with more work planned for this summer. The project at the roughly 1,000-acre Jamies Pond Wildlife Management Area in Hallowell, Manchester and Farmingdale began in August and is roughly 75 percent complete, an official with the Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife said during a Hallowell Conservation Commission meeting. It’s the first timber harvesting project at Jamies Pond in more than a decade. “We’ve had really good operating conditions, and we haven’t had significant challenges because we had a very dry fall,” said G. Keel Kemper, a regional wildlife biologist for the wildlife agency, which is overseeing the project. “We feel pretty good about it.” The timber harvesting effort includes the removal of certain trees to allow other, younger trees to flourish, thus increasing foraging opportunities for deer, snowshoe hare and turkey. In addition, work is designed to improve a deer wintering area to increase openings in aspen-dominated sections to provide habitat for grouse and woodcock. The agency also built roads for vehicles and equipment. The roads are for temporary use but are essentially permanent by footprint…

Greenville, North Carolina, WHNS-TV, March 20, 2017: New tree initiative launched in Asheville

Asheville’s Parks & Recreation Department, along with Asheville GreenWorks, has launched a new initiative to plant trees over the course of the next three years at the city’s 74 recreation facilities. According to the City, to start off the initiative, the department announced the “30 Trees in 30 Days” program. Members of the Parks & Recreation Department, volunteers with Asheville GreenWorks and community members will gather at 4 p.m. on Mar. 8 at the Shiloh Complex to plant the first three trees. “Through this three-year tree initiative, the Parks and Recreation Department demonstrates its commitment to improving the appearance of our community and our environment. Planting these trees at our parks and facilities creates a lasting legacy.” Said Roderick Simmons, Parks & Recreation Director. In Jan. 2016, the Asheville City Council created a 20-year vision for the city. Part of this vision included a dedication to a clean and healthy environment…

Mother Nature Network, March 20, 2017: Why do the leaves of some trees turn brown but not drop?

Have you noticed a tree around town that holds its brown leaves all winter instead of dropping them? There’s a term for this curious leaf-retention phenomenon. It’s called marcescence. And if it’s a conical-shaped understory tree with bleached, light tan leaves, it’s probably an American beech (Fagus grandiflora). “Basically, that means that things hold onto stuff,” said Jim Finley, a Pennsylvania Extension Service forester who is also a professor of forest resources and director of the Center for Private Forests at Penn State. Marcescence occurs in other trees beyond beech trees. Leaf retention also occurs in many oak species, witch hazel, hornbeam (musclewood) and hophornbeam (ironwood), said Finley, who added that it’s more common with smaller trees, or more apparent on the lower branches of larger trees. What’s interesting is that scientists haven’t figured out exactly why some trees retain their leaves. “It’s all speculation,” sad Finley, who said there appears to be little new literature about the topic in recent years…

Pensacola, Florida, News Journal, March 20, 2017: Learn the tools, techniques to keep your trees handsome

Keep your trees and shrubs happy, healthy and handsome with the tips and techniques you’ll learn at a proper-pruning instructional session, 10 a.m. Monday at Pensacola State College, Milton campus. Florida Master Gardener Mike Burba will lead the one-hour presentation of the proper techniques for pruning of trees and shrubs, including the use of the right tools. If weather allows, a demonstration will take place in the garden. The presentation is part of the “Mondays in the Gardens” series, a free gardening program at the UF Milton Gardens under the direction of UF/IFAS Extension Santa Rosa County Master Gardeners. No pre-registration is required. Follow the signs on the Pensacola State College, Milton campus to find the UF Milton Gardens. The gardens are free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day the campus is open. Both self-guided and guided tours are available. Changing seasonal gardens feature a multitude of horticultural displays including shade, formal, children’s and water gardens, bulbs, roses, shrubs, trees and perennials…

San Francisco, California, Chronicle, March 18, 2017: First major SF tree census: 35,000 more trees in city than previously thought

Urban tree huggers rejoice. This concrete jungle is home to nearly 125,000 trees and a staggering 628 species and cultivars. San Francisco’s tree population is even more diverse than its citizenry. Following a yearlong citywide tree inventory, officials with the SF Urban Forest Map painstakingly recorded every tree in San Francisco. The map was last updated in 2010, using data primarily from the Department of Public Works. Combining data from the Friends of the Urban Forest, the City of San Francisco, businesses, and citizen scientists, this year’s update reported 35,000 more trees than the previous iteration. A typical city hosts 80-100 different tree species, according to a statement on the Urban Forest Map’s website. San Francisco’s diversity of species aids the plants in warding off pests and diseases, and the data helps forest managers plan future tree plantings…

Baraboo, Wisconsin, News, March 19, 2017: Program to discuss tree fire scars

The Baraboo Range Preservation Association will hold the Cabin Fever Lecture Series program, Fire on the Landscape: Historical Evidence at Pine Bluff from 7-9 p.m. Wednesday at the University of Wisconsin-Baraboo/Sauk County science facility, 1006 Connie Road, Baraboo. Wisconsin DNR Fire Ecologist, Jed Meunier will discuss fire scars found in tree stumps at BRPA conservation easement property owned by Toni Ankenbrandt. Learn about the frequency of fire from this red pine relic as part of the larger historical record for the Baraboo Hills. Cross sections of stumps collected on location will be on display…

Carlisle, Pennsylvania, The Sentinel, March 19, 2017: Winter storm stalls bud growth in fruit trees

The winter storm had arrived just when David Peters needed a change in the business climate. Warm temperatures this winter forced him to keep a close eye on the fruit trees that make up his livelihood. The concern was the warmer temperatures could fool the trees into coming out of dormancy too early, putting the blossoms that bear the fruit at risk of being damaged by a subsequent dip in the mercury. “It came at a very good time for us,” said Peters, manager and part-owner of Peters Orchards of Adams County, which has a few hundred acres along the border with South Middleton Township in Cumberland County. The cold temperatures and heavy snow that came with the storm delayed any further development of buds on most of the fruit trees, putting the plants back on a normal seasonal pattern…

US News, March 19, 2017: Changing climate threatens New Mexico’s pinon trees

New Mexico’s official state tree is under threat from the region’s warming and drying climate, scientists say. The pinon pine is known for its nuts and its distinctive smell when used as firewood. But state scientists and botanists are warning that pinon trees across northern New Mexico and other areas of the state may be under increasing strain this year, The Santa Fe New Mexican reports. The changing climate can leave the tree vulnerable to pest infestation and disease, and it isn’t clear yet how severe the problem could become, according to scientists. “Pine needle scale is all over Santa Fe,” said Scott Canning, director of horticulture for the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. “Last year, it was widespread; this year it is even more widespread…”

Ruidoso, New Mexico, News, March 15, 2017: First-graders beg principal to save lone apple tree

We’re a long way from the picking season, but the lone apple tree next to the White Mountain Elementary school cafeteria driveway is producing some very rich fruit right now anyway. First graders at nearby Sierra Vista Primary school learned that because of its location, the tree might be doomed when the backhoes arrive next month to begin construction of the Nob Hill replacement project. The students took pens in hand last week to compose a petition to Principal Jeremy Green, explaining how important the tree is and asking him to find a way to save it. “I did have the class write me a nice letter talking about their concern with the tree,” Green said Wednesday. “It’s a sort of cornerstone for them. They talked about the apples and the shade it provides…”

Atlanta, Georgia Journal-Constitution, March 15, 2017: Cops: Man scammed Gwinnett seniors with fake tree-cutting business

Gwinnett County cops are looking for a Flowery Branch man they believe has scammed 14 people out of $9,000 with a fake tree-cutting business. Andrew Mosley, 22, is wanted on 13 counts of misdemeanor theft by conversion and one count of felony theft by conversion. Mosley posed as a tree-cutting and removal service provider in Gwinnett County starting in December, taking advance payment to trim or remove trees, but not completing jobs. Several of Mosley’s alleged victims are elderly, in their 70s and 80s, police said. Mosely is believed to have operated under the company names of B&M Tree Services, Mosley Tree Service and United Tree Service.“We highly anticipate additional victims,” police said. Customers can avoid potential scammers by checking whether a company is registered with the Secretary of State’s office or asking for proof of insurance…

Oakland, Michigan, Press, March 15, 2017: There is no cure for black knot fungus on your tree

Q: I just love those purple leaf plum trees. I have one now and it appears to have tumors on the branches. It has black corky material on various branches that make them lumpy and I have no idea when this happened. And there has never been any fruit on this tree but it has had flowers. So, what’s happening?
A: A fungal problem called black knot is happening. This is a chronic problem with many members of the prunus family, especially purple leaf plum or sand cherry. It is known by both names. The branches develop black galls that cut off the flow of nutrients to the branches. But this nonsense did not occur recently. It takes at least two years to develop the blackened, swollen growths. The first year, they are small, light brown, smooth swellings on twigs. These develop on the current or last year’s growth. The next year during the growing season, the lumps become olive green and velvety in appearance. Then, they turn black and corky by the end of the growing season. The twigs could become curved or elbowed by the strange growths…

Lynchburg, Virginia, News & Advance, March 15, 2017: For love of nature: Preserving urban tree canopies

Most of us appreciate the beauty of tree-lined streets and the shade they give on hot summer days. Trees, however, provide many more benefits we often fail to recognize, including filtering pollutants out of the air and water, absorbing stormwater, improving mental and physical health, and increasing tax revenue and property values. The importance of tree canopies to urban revitalization was the focus of a workshop in Roanoke last week by Trees Virginia, the Virginia Urban Forest Council, a nonprofit organization that works to improve quality of life through tree stewardship. Speaker Karen Firehock, executive director of the Green Infrastructure Center in Charlottesville, said trees can reduce urban runoff between 2 and 7 percent, noting developers should not rip out trees to install rain gardens…

San Antonio, Texas, KSAT-TV, March 14, 2017: Tree recovery initiative kicks off for people impacted by storms

It’s about to get a lot more green in the neighborhoods impacted by the serious storms and tornadoes a little more than three weeks ago. On Tuesday, employees from the city of San Antonio’s Parks and Recreation Department began implementing a tree recovery initiative. “We lost all of our trees,” said Jesse Solano, a Linda Drive resident. Solano has lived on Linda Drive for 12 years. He and his family are expecting a higher utility bill when they move back home. That’s because big, beautiful shade trees that once stood in their front and back yards are now gone, lost to the EF-2 tornado that ripped down the street. Thanks to tree mitigation funds from the city, and some helpful Parks and Recreation employees, Solano and others affected by the storms were able to pick out two trees of their choice to plant at home free of charge. The initiative will also plant large trees at eligible homes. “We hope and pray that with nurturing, they’re going to grow up real nice and pretty,” Solano said…

Davenport, Iowa, Quad City Times, March 14, 2017: Davenport ash tree removals more than tripled since 2015

Davenport arborist Chris Johnson’s eyes widened, and he had to take a step back as he tried to explain the effect of the emerald ash borer to members of the Davenport City Council. The tiny, green invasive species originating from Asia was discovered in Rock Island County in 2013, but it was suspected to have been in the area for six to seven years prior. Two years later, it surfaced in Davenport. Now, the ash borer is damaging trees at an alarming rate with removal of hazardous and unhealthy ash trees more than tripling since its discovery in Davenport. “Once the infestations kind of bloom and explode, you find it all the time,” Johnson said. “That’s the case that’s going on now with all of our ash removal. We’re essentially finding it in every ash tree we remove…”

Environment Guru, March 14, 2017: Five years of tree mortality: PG&E continues work to keep lines clear, lessen wildfire threat

You don’t have to travel far into the Sierra Nevada foothills to see the devastation. In California, 6.1 million trees died per month between October 2015 and November 2016, bringing the total to 102 million since 2010 from more than five years of drought and bark beetle infestation. As a result of PG&E patrols, the energy company removed 236,000 dead or dying trees last year. Since California’s tree mortality crisis began, PG&E has worked to protect its infrastructure, and the customers and communities it serves, from wildfires and other public safety threats. Last week (March 8), PG&E representatives appeared before the California Board of Forestry and Fire Protection to discuss how the energy company has been combating the threat. That includes additional, extraordinary measures to its regular tree maintenance program that prunes or removes about 1.2 million trees each year, said Kamran Rasheed, PG&E vegetation management manager…

Lafayette, Louisiana, KATC-TV, March 14, 2017: Sunny, cool with a good chance of tree pollen

It’s that time of year again in Acadiana…pleasant weather with the main chance of something falling from the sky, or the trees rather, is pollen. That’s what the forecast holds for Acadiana as trees continue to reveal there spring foliage while rain chances are expected to remain slim to none at least over the next week. According to pollen.com oak and ash pollen are the currently the top allergens in the area…with the forecast for high tree pollen to continue for the rest of the week. Expect sunny skies to continue for our Wednesday with temperatures warming into the low-mid 60s after a chilly start mostly in the lower 40s…

Dallas, Texas, Morning News, March 13, 2017: 67-year-old Lakewood woman climbs tree to protest Oncor’s pruning

A 67-year-old woman climbed a tree outside her Lakewood home on Monday morning in an effort to keep it from being cut down. Jeri Huber went up the tree around 11 a.m., KXAS-TV (NBC5) reported, and only came down when she learned that workers would come back with a restraining order against her. Huber told the station that the incident in the 7100 block of Westlake Avenue, near Winsted Drive, stemmed from a dispute with Oncor about a pole that had been left leaning onto her property. A Dallas County constable served papers at Huber’s home Monday afternoon, WFAA-TV (Channel 8) reported, and the tree-trimming crew returned. In 2010 — armed with a pellet gun — she climbed a tree in an attempt to stop the company’s crews from trimming its branches. Oncor eventually got a restraining order against her.…

Anderson, Indiana, Independent Mail, March 13, 2017: Tree removal closes Anderson’s South Boulevard

The removal of a 105-year-old tree that likely had been part of the Anderson University landscape at its inception is expected to block traffic on South Boulevard for parts of the next three days. Traffic was blocked most of the day Monday as cranes moved into position for the removal. The road will be blocked in front of Anderson University again from 8 a.m. to noon Tuesday and Wednesday. Arbortech crews began work Monday morning on the removal of a large red oak tree that stood near the road. Arborist Phil Pierce said the 120-foot tree was likely a young one in the spring of 1912, a few months before the college opened its doors for the first time…

Villanova, Pennsylvania, Main Line Media News, March 13, 2017: White oak tree trunk installed to await new bunny sculpture

The carved wooden rabbits statue that has been a landmark along County Line at Spring Mill roads in Villanova was removed two weeks ago as crews delicately disassembled the roadside attraction to make room for a new one that will be carved in the in the next month or so. The statue was carved decades ago and was beginning to deteriorate, so officials and crews from the Natural Lands Trust, which now owns the Stoneleigh estate property where the rabbits stood, decided to have Marty Long, the man who originally carved it, make a new one. Last Saturday, the decayed base was replaced by a new white oak tree trunk installed by crews from Shreiner Tree Care. The 4,500-pound decayed trunk was removed by crane, and carefully replaced with the 26,000 pound white oak trunk. Long, will recreate another bunny sculpture over the next couple of weeks…

Labroots, March 13, 2017: Tree rings predicting volcanic eruptions?

Geographers and dendrochronologists teamed up in a cross-disciplinary study to look at the correlation between tree rings and volcanic eruptions, reports the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL and the ETH Zurich. Their results gathered from Mount Etna’s west flank which erupted in January, 1974, state evidence that tree rings may be able to predict eruptions. Scientists know that tree rings can provide a lot of of environmental information. For instance, the ring width reflects the tree’s growth conditions, which are a combination of the temperature, precipitation and nutrient conditions during a given growing season, explains ScienceDaily. But this new study, published in Scientific Reports, makes it clear that tree rings may provide even more information than previously thought. “The ring width may also be influenced by volcanic activity on Mount Etna and in other volcanic regions,” states geographer Ruedi Seiler, a PhD student at WSL…

Seattle, Washington, KCPQ, March 12, 2017: ‘I was in shock’ friends of teen killed by falling tree concerned over park safety

Family and friends are grieving the loss of 17-year-old Diana Olidinchuk who died in after a tree fell on her in one of their local parks. It has some concerned about the safety of the trees in Meadowdale Beach Park where a makeshift memorial for the teen is at the hike’s entrance. “I was at work yesterday and my friend called me and I was in shock,” said Angelina Plutenko. She came to the memorial with her sister Evelina the day after she learned about her friend. “I was in shock for the whole day…”

Lincoln, Nebraska, Journal Star, March 12, 2017: March is a great time for tree pruning

Late winter is an excellent time to prune deciduous trees. Branches are easier to remove when not weighed down by leaves and the tree’s branching structure is easier to see. Proper tree pruning is essential in developing trees with strong structures and desirable form. Young trees that receive appropriate pruning require little corrective pruning as they mature. Pruning can be done at any time during the year, but growth is maximized and wound closure is fastest if it takes place just before spring growth. However, flowering trees, like Japanese lilac and magnolia, should be pruned right after they finish blooming to prevent the removal of flower buds during pruning. Pruning should be done with an understanding of how trees respond to each cut. Improper pruning can cause damage that will last for the life of the tree, or worse, shorten the tree’s life

San Diego, California, Reader, March 12, 2017: Encinitas’ love/hate for a certain tree

An attempt to pass a tree ordinance in Encinitas drew a slew of people to a meeting Wednesday night (March 8). Besides being generally interested in protecting publicly owned trees, people wanted to talk about the four ficus trees the city planned to cut down last year. The city aborted the plan amid public protest and is now trying to control the trees’ growth so their roots stop damaging streets, sidewalks, and sewer connections. The proposed ordinance is more broad and general, allowing the city to declare trees “heritage trees,” which triggers greater protections for them. The ordinance only applies to city-owned trees, not to private property. The city already has a tree ordinance (approved in 2011) and was recognized as a “Tree City” in 2012. But the “safety net” for trees has failed several times since then, and the city is exploring hiring a contract arborist as its tree expert…

Redlands, California, Daily Facts, March 12, 2017: Why crews are relocating 4 palm trees in downtown Redlands

City crews this week will replant four palm trees downtown. The crews removed the palms from the sidewalk along the east side of Orange Street north of Redlands Boulevard to relieve crowding of the trees against storefronts and create a wider walkway for pedestrians. The palms are currently being stored and watered in anticipation of replanting. Two palms will be relocated to vacant tree wells in the sidewalk in front of the Redlands Mall. The other two trees will be relocated into newly constructed bulb-out tree wells near their current location along Orange Street

Dallas, Texas, WFAA-TV, March 9, 2017: Neighbors take a stand against Oncor crews cutting down trees

Most mornings Juanita Erwin makes a cup of coffee and looks out at her oak tree in the front yard of her Weatherford home. She’s been doing the same morning routine for 30 years. “My husband planted the tree himself. Grew it from an acorn,” Erwin said. Thursday, helicopters flew over as Erwin’s neighbors stood in front of that tree, blocking crews from Oncor from cutting it down. “We told them they had to leave and get a permit,” Arthur Erwin said, Juanita’s husband. Oncor says it was doing “vegetation management” clearing trees and plants that pose a risk to the vital electric infrastructure.” In a written statement from the power company, Oncor says it chose trees and plants based on their height and proximity to the high voltage lines…

Longview, Washington, The Daily News, March 9, 2017: Kalama man killed by falling tree while clearing his property

A 36-year-old man clearing land on his own property east of Kalama died Tuesday morning after a tree fell on him. Stewart Lee Osborn was cutting down a tree when the trunk split, kicked back and landed on top of him, according to the Cowlitz County Coroner’s Office. He died instantly. An autopsy determined the man died of blunt force trauma to the neck and chest, according to the Coroner’s Office. Cowlitz County Sheriff’s Capt. Corey Huffine said Osborn had recently purchased the property. Cowlitz County sheriff’s deputies and Fire District 5 responded to the 911 call at 11:46 a.m. at 727 Italian Creek Road. He was pronounced dead at the scene at 11:55 a.m., said Chief Deputy Coroner Brett Dundas…

Rochester, New York, WHEC-TV, March 9, 2017: Tree removal companies have a big job ahead

They’re barely done with the cleanup from last week’s chaos, but now they’re fielding record numbers of calls as winds continue to topple trees and crush homes. All day we’ve seen violent winds knock down trees and power lines across our area. Just last week, we spoke with Cindi Johnson of East Rochester after a large tree crashed into her living room. For Johnson, the sound of wild winds whipping reminds her of when a red oak tree pierced through her home. “The front dormer was ripped off and there was a tree in here and coming through the ceiling,” she says. Her yard was filled with limbs that took about five hours to clean up. “I’m just concerned about the winds that we’re going to get tonight,” Johnson adds…

Mount Pleasant, Michigan mLive, March 9, 2017: Two dead after heavy winds blow tree onto moving car

Heavy winds claimed the lives of two people in Clare County when a tree fell onto their moving vehicle. On Wednesday afternoon, March 8, Maxwell Muessig, 20, was driving a Mini Cooper east on M-115 Highway through Clare County’s Freeman Township. In the car with him was 23-year-old Margaretta Potter. As they neared the border between Clare and Osceola counties, a large tree fell on the Mini Cooper’s roof. The tree had been blown over by high winds, according to Michigan State Police troopers. Troopers from the Mount Pleasant Post responded to the crash site at about 4:25 p.m. Medical personnel pronounced both Muessig and Potter deceased at the scene…

Detroit, Michigan, mLive, March 8, 2017: Tree crushes Volkswagen amid destructive winds in Detroit

A Detroit man is going to come home from Montreal to a destroyed car after extraordinarily strong and sustained winds knocked down trees and power lines across southeast Michigan on Wednesday. Brian Ambrozy said he got a text from his wife at 12:20 p.m. with a picture of his roommate’s limited edition Volkswagen smashed by a downed tree in Detroit’s Woodbridge neighborhood. He said he believes the car is a limited edition 2006 Volkswagen Golf GTI. Ambrozy said his roommate flew to New Jersey to buy and drive the car back to Detroit about six months ago…

Washington, DC, Washington Business Journal, March 8, 2017: An investor wants to build three homes in Kent. A tree and some angry neighbors stand in the way

In Northwest D.C.’s Kent neighborhood, a battle is brewing over a large coffeetree. The Chain Bridge Road Preservation Committee, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, has filed an appeal with the District’s Board of Zoning Adjustment to stop the planned construction of three single-family homes on University Terrace NW — on part of a 6-acre estate formerly owned by a DuPont heiress and her husband. The group said in its filing that construction of the homes, which will range from 3,886 square feet to 5,623 square feet plus “substantial” driveways and swimming pools, will kill the heritage Kentucky Coffeetree. The group also argues any tree removal on the property’s subdivided lots is prohibited, and that tree preservation rules created in the 1990s via the Chain Bridge Road/University Terrace Overlay zone bans large scale tree transplanting. The appeal asks that Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs revoke the building permits it issued in January. “The scale of the proposed development is substantial and can only be pursued based on ‘heroic’ and costly tree preservation efforts,” the appeal states. There is no margin for error or failure, it continues, and there is “no reasonable basis to conclude” that tree preservation will be successful…

West Seattle, Washington, West Seattle Blog, March 8, 2017: Ponderosa pine at heart of tree-vs.-house battle to be cut down today

A tree-cutting crew is preparing to take down the “exceptional tree” at 3036 39th SW that had been at the heart of a neighborhood battle – it’s the ~100-foot Ponderosa Pine growing in the middle of a lot where the new owner intends to build a house. Here’s how the tree looked when we first reported on it nine months ago, interviewing a young neighbor who wanted to save it. Our most-recent update was three weeks ago, when nearby resident Lisa Parriott announced she was taking the fight to court, after the city Hearing Examiner ruled in favor of property owner Cliff Low in January. Court records show Parriott’s Land Use Petition in the case is scheduled for a hearing on March 31st – more than three weeks away. But the tree that neighbors dubbed the “Silent Giant” will apparently be long gone by then. Crews from Ballard Tree Service first cut a smaller tree on the lot this morning and are getting ready to take down the pine tree, with an offduty police officer hired to provide security on site…

Columbus, Ohio, The Ohio State University, March 7, 2017: How soil moisture can help predict power outages caused by hurricanes

In the days before Hurricane Matthew, researchers used satellite maps of soil moisture to help forecast where the power would go out along the East Coast. At the American Geophysical Union meeting this week, they report that their method worked with 91 percent accuracy. The project aims to curtail outages by helping power companies allocate equipment and crews in advance of storms, said Steven Quiring, professor of atmospheric sciences at The Ohio State University.
Healthy trees that receive just the right amount of moisture are less prone to storm damage, he explained, so soil moisture is a good indicator of where outage crews will be needed. “We see increased numbers of outages at both ends of the spectrum—wherever soils are too wet or too dry,” Quiring said. “Drought makes tree branches more likely to snap off, and over-saturation makes trees more likely to be uprooted…”

New York City, Post, March 7, 2017: Sean Lennon settles tree lawsuit with Marisa Tomei’s parents

Sean Lennon finally gave peace a chance, settling a $10 million lawsuit over a rotting tree with his Greenwich Village neighbors who are actress Marisa Tomei’s parents. The details of the agreement are confidential but Gary Tomei told The Post that the 60-foot ailanthus tree finally came down last month after two years in court. “I’m just happy it’s over,” Tomei said. Roots from the diseased tree had cracked the Tomeis’ W. 13th Street stoop, crept into their basement and even compromised their foundation, according to the suit filed by Gary and his wife Addie…

Gardening Knowhow, March 7, 2017: Aspen tree information: Learn about Aspen trees in landscapes

Aspen trees are a popular addition to landscapes in Canada and the northern parts of the United States. The trees are beautiful with white bark and leaves that turn a striking shade of yellow in the autumn, but they can be finicky in a few different ways. One problem that many people come up against when growing aspen trees is their short lifespan. And it’s true – aspen trees in landscapes usually only live between 5 and 15 years. This is usually due to pests and diseases, which can be a real problem and sometimes have no treatment. If you notice your aspen becoming sick or infested, the best thing to do is often to cut the offending tree down. Don’t worry, you won’t be killing the tree. Aspens have large underground root systems that continually put up new suckers that will grow into large trunks if they have the space and the sunlight. In fact, if you see several aspens growing near each other, odds are good that they’re actually all parts of the same organism. These root systems are a fascinating element of the aspen tree. They allow the trees to survive forest fires and other aboveground problems. One aspen tree colony in Utah is thought to be over 80,000 years old…

Menlo Park, California, Almanac, March 7, 2017: If a tree falls on an Atherton road, who pays to move it?

If a tree falls in Atherton, who pays to get it out of the road? That question was pondered by Atherton’s City Council at a March 1 study session.City Attorney Bill Connors had recommended the town continue a practice begun last November of charging the owners of fallen trees in roadways all the costs of clearing them. But council members favored finding a way to revert to the town’s previous practice. The town had cleared trees from roadways at public expense, leaving the homeowner to pay for removing the rest of the tree from the roadside. Reverting to that policy might require changing town laws, the council was told…

Las Vegas, Nevada, KLAS-TV, March 7, 2017: Winds whip up business for tree service companies

Some homeowners have spent Monday getting everything cleaned up following a wild windstorm Sunday. It’s not often winds that strong are felt in the Las Vegas valley. Some neighborhoods were waking up to the sound of a cacophony of cleanup crews Monday morning cleaning downed trees. Wild winds whipping through the valley were enough to knock over power poles along Koval, just east of the Las Vegas Strip. “This weekend, there was a lot of wind, so we got a lot of emergency calls,” said Luis Martinez, Vegas Best Tree Service…

Los Angeles, California, Times, March 5, 2017: Woman killed by falling tree at Half Dome Village in Yosemite National Park

A 21-year-old woman was killed Sunday by a falling tree at Half Dome Village in Yosemite National Park. Park spokesman Scott Gediman told Sacramento television station KCRA that the accident happened about 11 a.m. in the area formerly known as Curry Village. No other information about the victim was made public. A windy, cold storm was sweeping through Northern California and dumped hail. Scattered showers were forecast for the region through Sunday. Gediman says rangers closed the village and had visitors leave the area after the accident. Weather conditions were improving Sunday afternoon, and rangers expected to reopen the area later in the day…

EurekAlert, March 6, 2017: Tree growth model assists breeding for more wood

A meeting in a forest between a biologist and a mathematician could lead to thicker, faster growing trees. “Mathematicians like translating biological processes into numbers,” said Andrei Smertenko, assistant professor in Washington State University’s Institute of Biological Chemistry. “I’m a biologist, and I want to help grow stronger, better trees.” Breeding trees is a time-consuming and imprecise field, with breeders relying on a few genetic markers and what they can see. It takes years before they see the traits they’re looking for in a young tree. To help speed things up, Smertenko and his WSU Department of Mathematics colleagues Vladyslav Oles and Alexander Panchenko have developed a new model that could help make tree breeding much easier…

Michigan State University Extension, March 6, 2017: Tree damage from squirrels can be severe during winter months

There are a number of wildlife species who utilize tree bark as a food source. Beavers cut down trees to get to the twigs and limbs. Porcupines have a varied diet, but strip bark from upper branches of trees through winter months when bark, twigs and needles make up most of their diet. Mice, voles and rabbits will gnaw the bark of younger shrubs and trees during winter. Usually mice and vole damage will be under the snow, while rabbit chomping will be above snow level. If this feeding encircles the trunk it prohibits all sap flow and the affected tree will either die or sprout from below the damage. Many individuals think of squirrel as nut or seed eaters. It varies with species, but squirrels are a more opportunistic feeder imagined. In addition to nuts and seeds, they utilize small fruit, field crops like corn, insects, and mushrooms and are active visitors to bird feeders. Fox and eastern grey squirrels have been found to strip and apparently feed on inner tree bark as well. In the northern regions, this bark gnawing activity is most evident in the late winter months, but there have been reports of different tree species being affected throughout the seasons. There are several theories as to why squirrels do this, but no hard evidence has been presented as an explanation…

Trenton, N.J., Times, March 6, 2017: What happens to the wood from 600-year-old tree remains uncertain

Basking Ridge Presbyterian Church officials will wait to see the quality of wood remaining from the iconic 600-year-old white oak tree that will be cut down during the week of April 24 before deciding how to preserve portions of the tree for its historic significance, said Jon Klippel, a member of the church’s Planning Council. The landmark tree, which has called the Basking Ridge Presbyterian Church home for centuries and has watched over parishioners and the adjacent graveyard for the past 300 years, has died and will be cut down. George Washington once picnicked under the iconic tree. “We’ve received a number of ideas, including using some of the wood in future building projects, but everything depends on what we find when we take the tree down,” said Klippel. “Decades ago, a large amount of concrete was implanted in the tree and we don’t know the internal location of that concrete and the degree of decay and rot that has occurred…”
bradford170306Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, The Oklahoman, March 5, 2017: The Bradford pear: Oklahoma’s worst tree or just misunderstood?

Cursed for its dense yet brittle branches that break off after ice storms and blamed for springtime allergies, the Bradford pear may be one of Oklahoma’s most despised trees. The ornamental blooming trees with sour-smelling flowers were initially thought to be sterile, but the Bradford has since become an invasive species in Oklahoma, sprouting up in clumps along fence lines and in fields. Wild Bradford pear started to be a problem in Oklahoma about 10 years ago and are rapidly expanding beyond shopping mall parking lots and suburban front lawns, said Karen Hickman, professor of Natural Resource Ecology and Management at Oklahoma State University. Hickman is also a founding member and past-president of the Oklahoma Invasive Plant Council. “It’s escaped and now it’s running rampant,” Hickman said. “Some people consider it as bad as eastern red cedar — it’s another person’s feral hog…”

Springfield, Massachusetts, The Republican, March 5, 2017: State Police identify North Reading woman who died after tree fell on car

Authorities identified the woman who was killed in Andover when a tree fell on a car Saturday as 58-year-old Elizabeth Roszkowski of North Reading. Massachusetts State Police troopers were called to Route 125 in Andover Saturday around 2:15 p.m. and discovered that a fallen tree had struck a 2007 Toyota Camry and the two occupants were trapped inside. Roszkowski’s husband, who is also 58, was driving. He was seriously hurt and taken to Lawrence General Hospital with life-threatening injuries, according to State Police…

visibility170306Chattanooga, Tennessee, Times-Free Press, March 5, 2017: Georgia Department of Transportation tree-trimming, bridge projects improve visibility, safety

Motorists who regularly travel Interstate 24 west of Chattanooga have noticed by now the trees on Georgia’s curvy stretch of highway along the state border have been cut back for a longer view. Maj. Tommy Bradford with the Dade County, Ga., Sheriff’s Department has patrolled the county for almost a quarter of a century and says heavy traffic through the corridor is dangerous. “The biggest problem is there’s so much traffic coming through there for a two-lane that it stays congested,” Bradford said. “Before, when we would have one wreck and traffic starts backing up on that and you’d get into those curves, you usually have another wreck back behind that.” While the hidden curves remain, the longer view should allow “more warning to be able to see in time,” Bradford said…

Mother Nature Network, March 5, 2017: How to transplant a tree

Do you have an “oops” tree in your yard? An oops in this case means the tree needs to be transplanted. Maybe it was planted in the wrong place. Maybe it’s in the way of your long-awaited new addition. Or, maybe “all of a sudden you have a news flash and you think ‘Oh my goodness, this thing is going to eat my house, and I need to move it before I have a problem,’” says Sheri Dorn, Extension horticulturalist and the Georgia Master Gardener Coordinator in the Department of Horticulture at the University of Georgia in Griffin. Whatever the reason, the tree needs to be transplanted. Worse, as you look at it and contemplate where you should move it, how you’re going to safely dig it up, carry it to its new home and re-plant it, you may have a sudden sinking feeling that you don’t have a clue about how to transplant it without doing harm. If you’re in that predicament, you’re in luck. Here’s Dorn’s step-by-step suggestions for transplanting a tree and how to determine if your efforts were successful…

treekill170303Whittier, California, Daily News, March 1, 2017: Family of grandmother killed in Penn Park tree collapse in Whittier to seek millions from city

Family members of a 61-year-old grandmother who was killed when a massive eucalyptus tree toppled onto their wedding party at Penn Park in December could soon file a lawsuit blaming the city for the deadly collapse, according to the family’s attorney. Brian Leinbach, the attorney for five family members of Margarita Mojarro, along with 18 others who said they were injured when the tree fell, said the family will seek millions of dollars in the lawsuit. “You have wrongful death, brain damage and a litany of serious injuries — we’re talking about a multiple well over $10 million,” he said. In a unanimous vote Tuesday, the Whittier City Council denied the family’s claim, along with two others, one by an assistant to the wedding photographers and another by the father of the groom…

Denver, Colorado, Post, February 27, 2017: Denver Water tree-thinning effort to protect watershed, prevent fires is expanded to private property

Tree-thinning intended to help heal the West’s ailing forests has become an essential part of providing water for city-dwellers: Denver Water, state and federal officials on Monday renewed a $33 million deal for work on 40,000 acres of public land and also on more than 5,000 acres of private land. The “Forests to Faucets” deal signed by Denver Water, the Colorado State Forest Service, Natural Resources Conservation Service and U.S. Forest Service builds on a $33 million 2010 initiative that led to thinning on 48,000 acres of public land, utility officials said. “We’ve seen tremendous results during the first five years of this partnership and we are excited to now expand the program to include private lands,” Denver Water manager Jim Lochhead said. Logging contractors enlisted in the effort clear trees from beetle-ravaged forests where large wildfires and erosion threaten water supplies. Denver Water officials have said investing in forest health helps avoid having to un-clog reservoirs and water delivery systems later at far greater cost…

slash170303Spokane, Washington, Spokesman-Review, March 2, 2017: South Hill Bluff tree slasher shows up again

Picking up from some unofficial tree hacking in 2015, someone has begun unauthorized cutting of ponderosa pine trees on the city-owned South Hill Bluff below High Drive. Planned tree thinning has been done on the bluff to reduce fire danger. But as you can see, this is random, unplanned, unnecessary and illegal. Report the vandal to the police if you get a sighting…

Reuters, March 3, 2017: Ancient human tree cultivation shaped Amazon landscape

Ancient indigenous peoples had a far more profound impact on the composition of the vast Amazon rainforest than previously known, according to a study showing how tree species domesticated by humans long ago still dominate big swathes of the wilderness. Researchers said on Thursday many tree species populating the Amazon region appear to be abundant because they were cultivated by people who populated the area before Europeans arrived more than five centuries ago. These include the Brazil nut, cacao, acai palm, rubber, caimito, cashew and tucuma palm. “So the Amazon is not nearly as untouched as it may seem,” said study researcher Hans ter Steege, a forest community ecologist at the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in the Netherlands and Free University of Amsterdam. The researchers used data on the tree composition of forests at 1,170 sites throughout the Amazon and compared it to a map of more than 3,000 known archaeological sites representing past human settlements…

forestscar170301Science Daily, March 1, 2017: Tree scars record 700 years of natural and cultural fire history in a northern forest

Until the modern era, the human mark on the northernmost forests of North America, Europe, and Asia was light. Human populations in these challenging environments were too small to make a big impact through agriculture or timber harvests. But increasing evidence indicates people influenced the northern forests indirectly, by igniting or suppressing fires. Distinguishing human from climatic influence on historical fire patterns is critical to forest management planning, which is guided by historical patterns of fire frequency, size, and intensity. A boreal forest nature reserve in southern Norway offered a unique opportunity to reconstruct past events, as scientists from the Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO) demonstrated in a report published online ahead of print in the Ecological Society of America’s journal Ecological Monographs. The trees told a story of a surge in human-instigated fires during the 17th and 18th centuries, followed by fire suppression after AD 1800, as economic motivations changed…

Jacksonville, Florida, WJAX-TV, March 1, 2017: Man accused of failing to finish tree trimming job pleads not guilty

A man who is accused of taking money for multiple tree-trimming jobs that were not completed pleaded not guilty on Wednesday. Arthur Ayers is being held in the Duval County detention center on $15,000 bond. He is scheduled to be arraigned on March 14. A woman who lives on Jacksonville’s Westside said she paid Ayers for services that were not completed. The new allegations against Ayers, who runs a tree trimming service, come less than a year after two different customers told News4Jax that they were ripped off when Ayers took their money without finishing the work. A News4Jax investigation led to Ayers being convicted of multiple counts of fraud in Duval County and sentenced to prison in 2011…

sftree170301San Francisco, California, Chronicle, March 1, 2017: The fight over a tree divides San Francisco neighbors

A tree has uprooted the healthy relationship among neighbors on Montclair Terrace in San Francisco’s Russian Hill neighborhood. Meri Jaye, 96, is fighting for landmark status for the redwood tree that she planted in her backyard in the early 1960s, in memory of her husband and two children who died in a tragic plane accident. “My husband proposed marriage to me in Muir Woods,” Jaye said at the city’s Landmark Tree Committee’s nomination hearing last October. “When I lost my husband and my children, I wanted a memorial that would mean the strength that I needed to carry on.” Jaye hopes that her personal story will not be the only thing that convinces others of the tree’s need to be a landmark. “It is a giant, beautiful and healthy redwood tree in the heart of the city. It is extraordinary,” Jaye said…

Duluth, Minnesota, News-Tribune, March 1, 2017: Why forests with more tree types grow better, faster

It’s been known for years that forests with lots of different tree species grow better and faster than forests with just one kind of tree. Now, for the first time, scientists say they know why. It’s shapes. It turns out trees of different species find a way to get along with their neighbors by spreading branches out to fill in gaps where sunlight is available — they play off each other’s shape. And that maximizes their combined ability to soak up the sun falling on a particular plot of land. The new information could not just help foresters provide more fiber for the region’s wood products industry, it could also help reduce climate-changing effects of greenhouse gases…

bucket170228Raleigh, North Carolina, WRAL-TV, February 28, 2017: Johnston County tree trimmer killed in 65-foot fall from bucket truck

A Johnston County tree trimmer was killed when he was thrown from a bucket truck Monday morning. Family members said Kenneth Earl Vick, 65, was working with his brother at a home at 402 Dixie Drive in Selma when a gust of wind caused the top of the tree he was cutting to crash into the lift truck, throwing him about 65 feet to the ground. A rented machine also toppled to the ground during the incident, family members said. Family members said Vick was the co-owner of Country Boy Tree Service and was well-known in Johnston, Wilson and Wayne counties. He was also the co-owner of Kenly Appliances in Kenley…

Syracuse, New York, WSYR-TV, February 28, 2017: Tree pollen allergies may emerge earlier with warm end to February

During his 30-years as an allergist, Dr. Juan Sotomayor has learned a little about pollen. “There is really no way to escape it. So, if you are sensitized, you are going to get hit,” he says. The doctor says tree pollen allergies generally hit his patients first and this year’s warm February could speed up symptoms. “If you have medicines like nasal steroids and antihistamines, you want to get those started as soon as the symptoms hit. Typically I start people mid-March. So, we are starting to see tree pollen. We might tell them to start a little earlier…”

bradford160401Tulsa, Oklahoma, World, February 28, 2017: Arborist’s warning about invasive plant: ‘No such thing as a good pear tree’

That pretty, white-flowering Bradford pear tree in your yard is a Trojan Horse for an invasion set on despoiling Oklahoma’s grasslands and rooting itself as a thorny, value-decreasing problem on acreage that is left fallow. An arborist with 35 years experience in the Tulsa County area is trying to spread the word that a few weeks of pretty blooms each spring isn’t worth the future destruction. Now that the trees are blooming, he urges people to take a look around Tulsa County and notice all the white-flowering trees in people yards, in the ditches, along the riverbanks, and turning up as white patches here and there in pastures, grasslands and at forest edges. Some native trees, such as plums and dogwoods, also have white flowers but they’re not yet in bloom. On Monday morning, Don Massey stood in a field off 121st Street near Yale Avenue, where a fallow pasture that once was mostly native bluestem broomsedge grasses now is a nearly solid 15 acres of Callery pear trees. The ground beneath the dense patch is barren, save a few remaining strips and patches of the grasses. “Don’t plant them,” he said. “There is no such thing as a good pear tree, unless it’s one that actually bears fruit…”

Sisters, Oregon, Nugget News, February 28, 2017: Recent tree well death highlights snow country hazard

Last month, a snowboarder’s death in Washington state once again focused attention on the backcountry danger posed by tree wells. It was reported that Nathan Redberg died after falling head-first into a tree well at the 49 Degrees North ski area north of Spokane. Redberg and his 9-year-old son were reportedly about 100 feet from a groomed ski run at the time of the incident. The son, who unsuccessfully attempted to extricate his father, sought ski patrol assistance; but, even with a quick response and a defibrillator, Redberg could not be revived. Snow Immersion Suffocation (SIS) can occur quickly when a victim plunges head-first into a tree well. Tree wells form around the bases of evergreen trees when overhanging limbs interfere with the natural deposition of falling snow, and the resulting cavities can be deadly. The cavity created around the tree will partially fill with loose, unconsolidated snow. Like quicksand, these traps can swallow a person in an instant. Such an accident can be compounded by snow adhering to overhanging limbs, which will often be dislodged on impact, further burying the victim…

blossoms170228Roanoke, Virginia, Times, February 27, 2017: With plums and peach trees blooming early, farmers increasingly concerned as warm weather continues

Virginia delights many residents for its four seasons. And as a winter month, February boasts the highest average snowfall. Not this year. Temperatures this month — which have topped 70 on seven days in Lynchburg, six days in Roanoke and twice in Blacksburg — by and large have had people tugging off their sweaters and pulling on their shorts. “Really our whole area has been seeing this warm weather,” said meteorologist Patrick Wilson with the National Weather Service in Blacksburg. “This is the warmest February on record if things continue this way until the end of the month.” That might be good news for residents who love warm weather, but it has some area orchard farmers on edge. “It’s affecting us, and it will continue to,” said Danny Johnson, owner of Johnson’s Orchard and Peaks of Otter Winery in Bedford…

Saint Petersburg, Florida, Saintpetersblog, February 27, 2017: Tree trimmer death blamed on employer, says widow, OSHA

The widow of a Thonotosassa man who died after falling while trying to trim a palm tree is blaming the landscape company for failing to provide adequate instruction and safety equipment. Gray, Georgia resident Bonnie Beatrice Roberts, the surviving spouse of Darryl James Roberts has filed suit against Total Scapes Inc., doing business as Tampa landscape company Totalscape Solutions. Totalscape Solutions is founded, owned and managed by 45-year-old Mark Anthony Gonzalez, and is located at 1717 E. Busch Blvd. in Tampa. Darryl Roberts, formerly known as Darryl James Babilius, was a 48-year-old Thonotosassa resident working at Totalscape Solutions when he died Aug. 11, 2015, leaving behind three children, six grandchildren and Bonnie Beatrice, his wife of two years…

novascotiatree170228Halifax, Nova Scotia, CBC, February 27, 2017: Why a Christmas tree was on the Macdonald Bridge this weekend

Spotting a Christmas tree at the end of February is unusual but even more so when one is perched some 50 metres above Halifax. The evergreen was placed on the Macdonald Bridge this past weekend to celebrate the final segment of the Big Lift redecking project — tradition in ironworking known as a topping out ceremony. For those unaware of the practice, the sight of a tree high above the harbor was puzzling. “I’m kind of at a loss as to why the tree is generating so much interest,” said George MacDougall, business manager for Ironworkers Local 752. His union did the bulk of the work on the project for the last two years…

Petoskey, Michigan, News, February 27, 2017: Orders for annual tree sale accepted

Orders for the Emmet Conservation District Spring Tree Sale is under way. The district has a diverse selection of conifer seedlings and transplants, hardwoods, fruit trees, shrubs and seedling packages for sale. Most of the species offered are native to the area and should grow well with proper selection and care. But, the Emmet Conservation District cautions about matching plants with the proper planting sites. When deciding what to plant, keep in mind the phrase, “right plant, right place.” Native trees planted in an appropriate site are usually the best option. Trees planted on unsuitable sites suffer high mortality, poor growth and are more susceptible to disease and pests. To help ensure a successful planting, consider and evaluate the soil composition before trees are purchased and planted. Tree growth is most rapid where soil drainage is good and competing grasses, shrubs and weeds are controlled. Also, a look to see what is already successfully growing at the proposed planting site is helpful. Most conifers, which include pines and spruces, are more commonly planted on drier, coarser-textured and less fertile soils. However, white spruce and the deciduous conifer known as American larch/tamarack will also do well in moist soils. Hardwoods or deciduous trees are usually better suited to loamy and clay/loam soil types where soil moisture and fertility are generally higher…

cherryblossom170227Washington, D.C., Post, February 21, 2017: The warm winter means cherry blossoms will peak early — here’s how soon it could be

We haven’t had much of a “winter” in Washington, and spring is almost here — though I could argue it already arrived. The plants are obviously going to leave their dormancy early (the crocuses are up!), which has us wondering about the cherry blossoms. Last month was the second-warmest January since the year 2000, and the 12th-warmest January since records began in Washington. It didn’t drop below freezing for 19 days in a row, which is not only a record-warm streak for the month, but also just plain strange; January is typically the coldest month in the capital. And the weird continues. Washington is one day short of the longest streak of days at or above 60 degrees in February, and 70s are in the forecast later this week. If you’re trying to make blossom plans, this year might prove to be a challenge. At the Tidal Basin, the cherry trees are already sprouting buds. It’s not obscenely early, but still much earlier than average. It suggests we’re probably going to hit peak bloom well before the average date of April 4…

Longmont, Colorado, Times-Call, February 26, 2017: Cottonwood trees coming down in neighborhood southwest of Longmont

More than 60 cottonwood trees lining entrances to the Lake Valley and North Rim neighborhoods southwest of Longmont will be sent through a wood chipper next week. A quote for the tree removal prepared by Longmont-based Parker Tree Service stated that the trees suffer from structural defects, lack strong root flare and lean toward the roadway, making them a liability to the Homeowners Association. “The probability of one of these trees impacting a moving vehicle is somewhat possible,” the document stated…

prune170227Arlington Heights, Illinois, Daily Herald, February 26, 2017: Pruning makes fruit trees more ‘fruitful’

Avoid working in the rain or walking over the root zone of a tree when the soil is soft and wet. Disinfect your tools with Lysol disinfectant or a solution of nine parts water to one part bleach after completing each tree and after each pruning cut if a tree has diseased branches. A general goal of pruning a fruit tree is to thin the canopy in order to increase sunlight and improve air circulation, which in turn will increase fruit production and help reduce diseases. First, remove all dead or diseased branches. These are easy to spot, since the wood is generally darker than healthy wood. Then thin the canopy by first focusing on pruning out branches that grow toward the center of the tree rather than out away from the center…

Reuters, February 27, 2017: In ‘special message’, Taliban leader urges Afghans to plant more trees

The Taliban group in Afghanistan on Sunday used a rare public statement in the name of its leader, Haibatullah Akhundzada, to call on Afghans to plant more trees for worldly and other-worldly good. Official Taliban outlets released the “special message” under Akhundzada’s name, an uncommon move for the group that has recently published unsigned statements on a range of issues such as civilian casualties, upcoming military operations, and the anniversary of the withdrawal of Soviet troops in the 1980s. Akhundzada, a cleric, is believed to have been in hiding since becoming Taliban leader in May 2016 following the death of his predecessor in a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan. In the statement, he urged Afghan civilians and Taliban fighters to “plant one or several fruit or non-fruit trees for the beautification of Earth and the benefit of almighty Allah’s creations…”

sftreefall170224San Francisco, California, Chronicle, February 23, 2017: 100-foot tree falls on building in San Francisco

A 100-foot tree toppled over in the West Portal neighborhood of San Francisco Wednesday afternoon, hitting a building but causing little damage, officials said. The West Portal building is a residential structure, said to Lt. Jonathan Baxter, a spokesman for the San Francisco Fire Department. The tree fell just before 4 p.m. in the 100 block of Ardenwood Way. There are no injuries or significant structure damage, but the tree did bring down several high voltage power lines. A crew from the Pacific Gas and Electric Company was sent to the scene to repair the downed power lines…

Yahoo.com, February 22, 2017: Hug a tree while you still can: U.S. forests are disappearing

The Amazon rainforest and Indonesia’s peat swamps aren’t the only places suffering from deforestation. On the mainland U.S., swaths of forests are steadily disappearing, too. It’s not just that we’re losing trees. The forests themselves are growing farther and farther apart, researchers say. A new study found that the average distance between forest patches increased by nearly 1,690 feet — or about 14 percent — between 1992 and 2001. That’s bad news for biodiversity. Think of each forest patch as a sanctuary or transit hub for migratory animals and other species. When forests are closely knit together, the wildlife, plants and soil can share nutrients and thrive. When trees are few and far between, these connections break down…

flatree170224University of Florida, February 23, 2017: UF/IFAS researchers work to solve mystery of rare Florida tree

An endangered species of magnolia that only grows in the Florida Panhandle has been named the 2017 plant of the year by the Garden Club of America. The timing couldn’t be better, says Gary Knox, professor of environmental horticulture with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. For the last three years, Knox and a team of researchers at the UF/IFAS North Florida Research and Education Center in Quincy, Florida, have been studying the Ashe magnolia to try to figure out why it’s so rare and how it may be conserved. Ashe magnolias are grown commercially as landscaping plants, and their large flowers and leaves make them popular among gardeners. The white and purple blossoms are the size of dinner plates, and the leaves grow up to two feet long. “This is what we call a ‘charismatic’ plant,” Knox said…

New Orleans, Louisiana, Times-Picayune, February 23, 2017: Naked man in tree in Mississippi said he was looking for dog, sheriff says

A Mississippi sheriff says a naked man has been rescued from a tree, where he was hanging head-down from a cable. Union County Sheriff Jimmy Edwards says Shawn Treadaway told a deputy he’d climbed the tree while looking for a dog, and fell. Edwards says he doesn’t know why Treadaway carried the cable. The sheriff told The Associated Press on Wednesday (Feb. 22) that he believes branches tore off most of Treadaway’s clothes as he fell, and rescuers cut off the remaining rags. New Albany Fire Chief Steve Coker tells WTVA-TV crews had to cut some trees out of the way Tuesday and then rig some rescue ropes to keep Treadaway safe while he was freed from the cable and brought down

maplesap170223Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Post-Gazette, February 22, 2017: Sticky situation: Warm weather has syrup flowing early — and maple farmers concerned

On the rocky Laurel Highlands knob that is Duck’s Maple Farm, long, spaghetti-like strands of blue plastic tubing criss-cross the woods, linking more than 2,200 maple trees to Don and Sherry Hess’ syrup cooker. The maple sap, what Mr. Hess refers to as “sugar water,” or just “water,” started flowing from the maples and through the Rube Goldberg-like configuration of collection tubes in mid-January, a full month earlier than normal, due to an early and extended stretch of warm weather. Getting an early start on sap collection and syrup cooking isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But due to the unseasonably warm weather continuing this month, Mr. Hess and the state’s other 250 maple syrup producers can be added to skiers, sledders and snowman makers on the short list of Pennsylvanians hoping for a return of cold winter weather. Or any winter weather. “For the sap to keep running we need warm days followed by cold nights, below freezing, to drive the sap down and keep the trees from budding,” said Mr. Hess, 58, a retired road construction worker. “If it doesn’t get cold again, I’m done…”

Mobile, Alabama, Press-Register, February 22, 2017: Tree trouble: Mobile halts work at Midtown Publix site

Following complaints about tree and vegetation removal at the site of Mobile’s Midtown Publix shopping center, the city has issued a notice of possible violation and a stop-work order on the project. The issue apparently began on Monday, when some residents of nearby neighborhoods began to raise concerns that contractors had gone too far in removing vegetation, particularly trees on the southeastern portion of the site. The shopping center will occupy land that formerly was the site of the Augusta Evans School, near the intersection of Florida Street and Old Shell Road. Developers succeeded in winning approval of the plan last year, but only after extensive back-and-forth with critics who questioned whether enough was being done to preserve the character of nearby residential neighborhoods and the general aesthetics laid out in the city’s Map for Mobile development plan. The upshot was that the approved site plan included some very specific agreements on fencing and buffer zones, including a wooded area on its southeastern boundary. At Tuesday’s city council meeting, District 6 Councilwoman Bess Rich said she was concerned about the possibility that the agreement had been violated…

bicyclist170223Omaha, Nebraska, World-Herald, February 22, 2017: Bicyclist ‘bruised everywhere’ but escapes serious injury after tree limb crashes down on her on South Omaha Trail

A Papillion woman heard only “a loud cracking sound” a split second before a large tree limb crashed down and hit her Sunday while biking the South Omaha Trail. Judy Black, 70, said she was riding about 12:30 p.m. near 45th and H Streets with a group of 20 cyclists. Emergency medical personnel from the Omaha Fire Department took Black to Bergan Mercy Medical Center, where she was treated and released. Black said she feels lucky to have escaped without any broken bones. She is, however, “bruised everywhere” and her cycling helmet was broken. “When (the branch) came down there was a loud cracking sound. I felt like it broke my back because it hurt so much,” Black said Wednesday. “Other than black and blue marks all over, I’m doing fine.” Omaha Parks and Recreation director Brook Bench said the city’s forester is investigating the incident. The city tries to regularly inspect all its trees, he said…

Toronto, Ontario, Star, February 22, 2017: Tree at centre of neighbour dispute near High Park won’t be cut

A 70-year-old Siberian Elm tree will live on after a clash between neighbours about whether it should be cut down ended with a warning that police would be called if the man who wanted to chop it down was caught trespassing. The 86-centimetre diameter tree is on the boundary of two bordering properties — one on Ellis Park Rd. and the other on Ellis Ave. — by a ravine near High Park. David Sher, whose family has lived in the home on Ellis Park Rd. since the 1970s, filed an application in November to remove the tree after the trunk’s growth started to crush the gutter of his garage. But neighbour JeanAnn Stewart and her husband Eric Poot said the tree has an important esthetic effect on the entire neighbourhood’s tree canopy and is on her side property line…

dc170222Washington, D.C., Post, February 21, 2017: In downtown Washington, progress comes and a tree is marked for death

“C’mon, little tree,” I say every time I walk along 14th Street NW between Pennsylvania Avenue and F Street. “Hang in there.” The tree has become a symbol to me, an inspiration even. I’m pulling for it, just as I’m pulling for a lot of things these days. I’m not even sure what kind of tree it is. A myrtle of some sort? What I do know is that it is growing in what has become one of the most precarious spots in Washington. The tree sits between National Place to the north and 1301 Pennsylvania Ave. NW to the south. It’s on a raised terrace between the two buildings, a story or two up from the sidewalk. National Place, an office building that’s also home to a food court beloved by school tour groups, will stay. But 1301 Pennsylvania is in the process of being demolished — really demolished…

Aberdeen, South Dakota, Farm Forum, February 21, 2017: Tree facts: Healthy roots and healthy trees

Most folks do not think about the important functions performed by tree roots. During the winter, roots provide food reserves to the tree for life functions and in the spring for producing spring foliage. Roots absorb water and minerals from the soil and transport them to the rest of the tree. Roots also serve as an anchor for the tree keeping it in a stable upright position for growth. The root system of a tree takes up a large area, typically extending outward two to four times the diameter of the average tree’s crown. Root systems are made up of large long-lived roots and smaller short-lived feeder roots. The large woody tree roots can grow very large in length and girth. The majority of the long lived roots are in the upper two feet of the soil and normally do not grow deeper than 3 to 7 feet. The feeder roots are small averaging only 1/16 inch in diameter but make up a majority of the surface area of the root system. These roots grow out from the large roots near the soil surface…

utilitytrim170222Bridgeport, Connecticut, Post, February 21, 2017: Eversouce: ‘Extensive’ tree trimming in Fairfield County

Eversource has announced details of its tree-trimming plan for 2017 along hundreds of miles in southwestern Connecticut. In all, Eversource will be trimming trees along more than 4,200 miles of overhead lines around the state. Among the 131 communities where tree trimming will be performed this year, some of the most extensive work will be done in Wilton along 132 miles of electric lines and 111 miles in Stamford. In addition, pruning will be completed in Ridgefield. Eversource notifies customers in advance if trimming is necessary on their property. The extensive trimming work is caused in part by prolonged drought conditions that has significantly weaken trees and branches, especially those that are decaying or diseased. Most of Connecticut remains in a severe drought. A part of northern Fairfield County and nearly all of Litchfield County is under an extreme drought, according to U.S. Drought Monitor…

Salem, Oregon, Capital Press Ag Weekly, February 21, 2017: Forecast models expand to honeybees, tree fruit size

A better model to predict timing of tree fruit blossoms and new models for best honeybee foraging and fruit size will be tested this year by Washington State University. The improved and new models of WSU’s Decision Aid System (DAS) for tree fruit growers will be used for the first time by 13 out of 250 system users. It’s sort of a road test of the models by growers, independent consultants and fieldmen of tree fruit companies, chemical dealers and organizations, said Vince Jones, DAS director and entomologist and behavioral ecologist at the WSU Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center in Wenatchee. Jones, former center director and entomologist Jay Brunner and Gary Grove, WSU plant pathologist, developed DAS and launched it 10 years ago…

forester170221Washington, D.C., Post, February 20, 2017: This gardener is working to preserve George Washington’s last surviving trees

George Washington was supposed to have cut down a cherry tree — that was fake news, folks, because it is well documented that our first president loved trees. In the late 18th century at his Mount Vernon plantation, Washington supervised the planting of hundreds of trees — trees for shade, for beauty, for fruit and for timber. On his travels, he brought trees back to plant at Mount Vernon. When Washington remade his garden and grounds after the Revolutionary War, he took a special interest in developing the bowling green, the expansive, bell-shaped lawn to the west of the mansion, bounded by serpentine paths that he proceeded to line with trees and shrubs. The paths were made of gravel hauled by slaves from the banks of the Potomac River. Today, only four trees survive from Washington’s time — he died at Mount Vernon in 1799. Scattered around the bowling green are two tulip poplars and a hemlock, native plants that grow wild in Virginia. The fourth is a white mulberry, the Chinese tree essential to the silk worm industry. How much longer these trees will live is anybody’s guess. The mulberry, planted on the outside of the Upper Garden, is a sorry-looking specimen. It has two trunks, but they have been beaten back and split, perhaps by lightning…

Jefferson City, Missouri, KMIZ, February 20, 2017: Abnormal warmth leads to early tree budding

Mid-Missourians have enjoyed quite a treat for Mother Nature this month, with the springlike weather. Temperatures have been nearly 20-30 degrees above average tricking many trees into budding earlier than normal. The early budding could come at a cost, as winter is far from over and many forecasting models still hint at the return of arctic air through the next month. “We’re beginning to worry about having an early spring,” state forestry extension specialist Hank Stelzer said. It’s his concern that this early spring tease will likely rival 2007, when trees began to bloom and then winter returned, killing everything. “We just don’t want to see a repeat of 2007, when we had that Easter freeze,” Stelzer said. “It’s one thing for things to break bud now, but then we can’t have any really cold temperatures behind it…”

gasline170221Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, WHYY, February 20, 2017: Sunoco clears trees, builds drill pads for Mariner East 2 pipeline

Preliminary construction work for the Mariner East 2 natural gas liquids pipeline took place in Delaware and Huntingdon Counties on Monday, a week after state officials issued the final permits for the controversial cross-state project. Workers cleared trees and built drill pads in Aston in Delaware County and Raystown Lake in Huntingdon County, the first two sites to see construction activity along the 350-mile route from southwest Pennsylvania to Marcus Hook near Philadelphia, according to Jeff Shields, a spokesman for Sunoco Logistics, which will build and operate the line. Monday’s activities followed some preparatory work last week, Shields said. At the Aston location on Monday afternoon, a backhoe was clearing tree trunks and branches while a mechanical scoop was building a base for a drill pad that will create an underground path for part of the line. A stack of previously cut trees lay nearby…

Billings, Montana, Gazette, February 20, 2017: Billings’ new city forester: ‘I just want people to appreciate trees as much as I do’

His job title — “city forester” — may sound like a contradiction. But Steve McConnell, who’s been on the job for the city of Billings for about six weeks, has a good idea how he can help build on Billings’ long history of caring for and about its estimated 90,000 trees. “Trees are part of the infrastructure of a city, and people take them for granted,” McConnell said Tuesday from his cubicle far from any trees, at the Billings Operations Center. “They are an essential part of our green infrastructure, as opposed to our gray infrastructure,” such as roads, bridges and pipes. McConnell, who has a doctorate in forestry from the University of Idaho, also studied forestry at the University of Washington and Virginia Tech…

treeoncar170217Los Angeles, California, Times, February 15, 2017: Record drought + record rain = toppled trees. How do you know if your tree is in trouble?

At Elysian Park near Dodger Stadium last weekend, hikers walked their dogs along the popular hiking trail, unconcerned by a recently toppled tree. But with more winter storms predicted, and news of a 100-year-old pine tree falling on a house and car in Pasadena on Tuesday, it’s hard for homeowners to be equally nonchalant. Extended drought followed by heavy rains are causing root instability. Trees aren’t just failing, they are falling over. “The ground can become like Jell-o once the soil gets to field capacity,” says Daniel Goyette, principal arborist for the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. “It can no longer hold any more water. That’s where you get movement in the soil. It’s why trees are toppling — the soil does not have the rigidity that it usually does…”

Denver, Colorado, Post, February 16, 2015: Grand County coroner identifies 17-year-old Texas girl killed in Winter Park ski crash with tree

Grand County authorities have identified the 17-year-old Texas girl who died Wednesday after skiing into a tree on an intermediate trail at Winter Park Resort. Alicyn Mitcham, from Colmesneil, Texas, was pronounced dead at Denver Health East Grand ER after efforts to revive her failed, according to county Coroner Brenda Bock.Bock said an autopsy on Alicyn, who lived in a small town outside of Houston near the Texas-Louisiana border, will be completed Thursday. According to Bock, Alicyn was not wearing a helmet. The ski area says the crash happened at about 12:30 p.m. on Forget-Me-Not, a run in the resort’s Parsenn Bowl. Alicyn is the fourth person to die in a ski crash — the third involving a tree — on Colorado’s slopes this season. Three of those have been men who died at Breckenridge Ski Resort…

shadetree170217Bergen, New Jersey, Record, February 16, 2017: Shade Tree drafts maintenance plan to begin this spring

About 40 trees cultivated at the nursery have been dug up in preparation for planting and relocation for the placement of the newly-purchased trees. Greg Goumas, Tree Supervisor for Rutherford’s DPW, explained the trees are in a dormant state. Once the weather permits and snow cover melts, those determined ready for transplant on borough streets and parks will be added to the dead end of Riverview Avenue and in Memorial Park by the Passaic River bank. Last count, 15 residents had requested trees to be planted by their homes, he said. Six trees in the nursery were found to have been planted without root bags during the last round of plantings about three years ago, meaning they cannot be transplanted, Goumas added. When asked how many whips, or younger trees, would be purchased for planting in the nursery this year, Addeo said that they could not commit to a number since the 2017 municipal budget was not finalized. Money for whip purchases would come from within the DPW budget…

Western Farm Press, February 15, 2017: Delayed first irrigation can improve walnut tree health, yield, quality

Walnut tree health, production, and crop quality are closely tied to irrigation management. Bruce Lampinen, integrated orchard management walnut and almond specialist with the University of California, Davis, says delaying irrigation initiation in the spring may provide benefits in water savings, increased rooting depth, and improved tree health. Lampinen has conducted research on deficit irrigation in walnuts, and examined delays in the initial irrigation, basing the decision on pressure chamber readings. The pressure chamber can also help growers avoid overwatering trees which if it occurs can have an adverse impact on tree health. “There are strategies to save water and not impact crop returns,” Lampinen told growers during the Tri-County Walnut Day event held in Visalia, Calif…

seattle170216Seattle, Washington, West Seattle Blog, February 15, 2017: Court challenge, city-fee settlement in tree-or-house case

Three weeks ago, after city Hearing Examiner Sue Tanner ruled against the neighbor-filed appeal in the Admiral tree-vs.-house case, appellant Lisa Parriott was still considering what to do next. Now, she tells WSB she’s taking the case to court. And she revealed she’s reached a settlement with the city regarding the fees they sought to charge related to her appeal. First, the basic backstory if you haven’t been following this: The tree is a 100-ish-foot Ponderosa Pine growing at 3036 39th SW, on what the neighborhood had long seen as the side yard for the house next door. Real-estate investor Cliff Low bought the property – house, tree, and all – in late 2015 and sought a city opinion to confirm that the side with the tree was a buildable lot. The city said it was. He filed for permits to build a two-story house with a two-vehicle garage. Neighbors launched a save-the-tree campaign. When the city formally said OK last October, both Parriott and the Seattle Green Spaces Coalition filed appeals, though ultimately Tanner only allowed Parriott’s case – and only in part – to proceed. A hearing was held on January 12; the ruling came in January 25th . That is considered the city’s final say in the matter, so any challenge has to be taken to Superior Court, and that’s what Parriott has done, filing a Land Use Petition and Complaint. You can read the document in its entirety here; the contentions include the same argument at the heart of the case taken to the Hearing Examiner, that the site doesn’t qualify for a Historic Lot Exception because there is nothing on record suggesting it was considered a separate building lot. Parriott’s action also seeks an injunction to keep the tree from being cut and house from being built while this plays out; city files show the building permit for the house was issued two weeks ago, on February 2nd…

London, UK, BBC, February 15, 2017: Tree surgeon dies of ‘chainsaw injury’ in south London

A tree surgeon has died after reportedly injuring himself with a chainsaw in south London. The man, believed to be in his thirties, suffered neck injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene outside Southwark Park Primary School. One witness tweeted he saw “a lot of blood” in the area after the accident at Banyard Road at around 11:00 GMT. A Met Police spokesman said the incident had been referred to the Health and Safety Executive. Another witness, Charlie Brenland said he saw police cordon off the road, adding: “Witnesses and the police said there had been an accident with a worker on one of the trees. “Someone there said one of the tree surgeons had an accident with a chainsaw.” Emergency services, including a London Air Ambulance attended the scene shortly after 11:00 GMT but were unable to save the man…

rainbow170216Viral Section, February 15, 2017: The World’s most beautiful tree bark called ‘Rainbow Eucalyptus’ can be found in the Philippines!

Our planet is naturally beautiful. From the beautiful northern lights to the Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park in China—the planet has a lot to offer. Today, one of nature’s art is once again revealed to the world. The Rainbow Eucalyptus or Eucalyptus Deglupta, which is often found in the Philippines, sheds its bark annually, revealing a colourful bark—that almost seems like a painting that has come to life. The tree is like a colourful palette, with dozens of colors mixed in the tree’s trunk. Its barks are very delicate, which can be peeled off like paper. And when in its native rainforests in the Philippines, it can even grow up to 250 feet! The beautifully majestic trees are often found in Mindanao in the Philippines, but are now known to have grown in Hawaii, California, Texas, and Florida…

Chicago, Illinois, Tribune, February 25, 2017: Hinsdale man victim of tree-trimming ruse

Hinsdale man reported $150 was missing from his house due to an apparent scam. The resident said a stranger came to his home on the 100 block of North Vine Street at about 2:35 p.m. Feb. 11 and offered to trim trees in his backyard. The stranger asked the resident to accompany him outside so he could show him which trees should be trimmed. When the resident returned to the house, he saw two other men leaving his house. The man went inside where he discovered $150 was missing. It appeared as though the house had been searched, police said…

cherrytree170215Detroit, Michigan, Free Press, February 14, 2017: What kind of cherry tree did Washington fell

Washington’s birthday is a good time to think about cherry trees. But rather than questioning whether George really chopped down the tree and then admitted to it, I find myself wondering what kind of a cherry it could have been. (The story, incidentally, may be apocryphal. It was reported by Mason Locke “Parsons” Weems for his 1802 book, “Life of George Washington: With Curious Anecdotes, Equally Honorable to Himself and Exemplary to his Young Countrymen,” but has never been decisively confirmed.) That cherry tree could well have been something akin to the sweet cherries we can buy or grow today. Sweet cherries (Prunus avium), sometimes called bird cherries or, in their wilder state, mazzard cherries, were among the plants ordered from Europe by the Massachusetts Bay colony in 1629. By 1650, there was a cherry orchard in Yonkers, New York, and before the end of that century, there were plantings in Rhode Island, Maryland and Virginia…

Dallas, Texas, Morning News, February 14, 2017: Can this American elm tree be saved from neglect and disease?

Question: I have property in downtown New Braunfels that is in horrible condition and has a bamboo issue. And there are two beautiful trees that seem really old. Well, I was taking the fifth lesson of your course, Trees #2, and came to the part about woodpeckers knowing where the sugar is concentrated in a sick tree. I have heard a woodpecker on the big tree on this property. Turns out this tree is dramatically sick. And I’m afraid I may be too late. Yet I will do everything I can to try to save it. These are the major problems: 1. It has these huge wounds on it that are wet, and it looks like sugar is coming out. They may have been caused by deer or just from being sick; 2. The bamboo around it has been choking out the roots and growing near the root flare; 3. The property flooded in 1998, and I think this is why the flare may have been covered up by debris and sediment. When I began digging there was a lot of glass, rocks, metal and other trash mixed in with the dirt. One part is pure gray clay and the other is rocky; 4. There was a huge amount of moisture at bottom of tree…

scotland170215London, UK, BBC, February 14, 2017: Tree planting ‘threatening’ Scotland’s grand vistas

Mountaineering Scotland and the Scottish Gamekeepers Association have jointly written to Scotland’s environment secretary. The Scottish government wants woodland cover to go from 17% to 25% by 2050.It said there would be “appropriate consideration of Scotland’s distinctive upland landscapes.” Scottish Natural Heritage said Scotland had a low percentage of woodland cover compared with other European countries. A commitment to plant 10,000 extra hectares of trees between now and 2022 was made in the government’s draft Climate Plan. But, in an unusual alliance, Mountaineering Scotland and the Scottish Gamekeepers Association (SGA), said they were concerned about the impact of the Scottish government’s forestry targets on wild moorland…

Auburn, Alabama, Ledger-Enquirer, February 14, 2017: Auburn committed to making Toomer’s Corner ‘whole again’ with new oak trees

Auburn wants to make the famed entrance to the university at the corner of College Street and Magnolia Avenue “whole again.” The tree on Magnolia Avenue was damaged in September when Jochen Wiest lit it on fire. With work to remove and install new oak trees at Toomer’s Corner starting Saturday at 6 a.m., Auburn professor of horticulture Gary Keever held a press conference from the location to discuss plans for the location, which also includes replacing the tree on College Street. “This (College Street) tree was one of the original replacement trees for the Toomer’s Oaks that was removed in 2013,” Keever said. “It was a very large tree. It’s gone through a gradual decline since it was installed on Valentine’s Day in 2015. There’s very little foliage in the canopy. It’s simply signs that the tree is not doing well…”

redwood170206Eureka, California, Redheaded Blackbelt, February 5, 2017: Giant Tree Closes Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway

The Newton B. Drury Scenic Parkway is closed after a giant redwood crashed across the road. According to the Redwood National and State Park service, there is still “[a]ccess to the visitor center & trails from the south end (exit 753). One commentator wrote “big redwoods are brittle and shatter. That’s why timber fellers lay out a bed for them when they cut them, to minimize shattering…”

Vancouver, British Columbia, February 5, 2017: How the Douglas-fir tree put Vancouver on the map

Long before Vancouver’s Shangri-La and Harbour Centre defined the city’s skyline, giant evergreen trees towered over those who dared step foot inside the rugged wilderness. The Douglas-fir was king. “We grew some of the tallest trees on earth,” said Vancouver’s own “tree guy” David Tracey. In fact, the massive trees are what put Vancouver on the map. Tracey says when the first Europeans arrived in the 18th century, they were astonished by the magnitude of the giant, 1,000-year-old Douglas-fir trees…

dangertree170206Lismore, Australia, Northern Star, February 6, 2017: Dangerous tree to be cut down

Repeated hits from careless drivers have damaged a landmark leaning Norfolk Pine beyond saving at the Byron beachfront. A report from an independent firm of arborists told Council the cause of the tree’s deterioration was likely due to past physical damage from repeated vehicle impacts to the trunk when Bay St was two-way. A 3m sapling will be planted in its place. Situated in Apex Park opposite the Beach Hotel in Bay Street, Byron Bay, the tree will be removed due to deterioration and safety concerns sometime in mid-February, weather permitting. Byron Shire Council’s director of infrastructure services, Phil Holloway, said concerns over the leaning tree had seen a recent independent arborist inspection take place…

Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Lancaster Online, February 5, 2017: This tree law attorney tries to defuse spats between neighbors

If Rachel Roat, a tree law attorney, had her way, power lines would be buried and utilities wouldn’t butcher homeowners’ trees. People who have trees in their yards would revere them for the asset they are. They would responsibly maintain them with care and willingly pick up the occasional fallen branch and rake leaves in the fall without complaining. “I hate to see a tree that’s cut down,” says Roat, 64…

prune170203Chicago, Illinois, Tribune, February 2, 2017: How to properly prune young trees

Every young tree in our communities needs guidance to grow up healthy and resilient. Right now, while the tree is still dormant during the winter, is the time to provide that guiding hand by pruning. “The idea is to create a strong structure that will prevent damage in storms and increase the longevity of the tree,” said Katrina Lewin, horticulturist at The Morton Arboretum in Lisle. Some branches, because of the way they grow or are attached to the trunk, are weak points in the tree. Remove them from a young tree, and they won’t grow into big problems. “You can get away with a lot less pruning when the tree is mature if you catch structural problems early,” Lewin said. Here are her tips for pruning a young tree. She demonstrates the technique in a video at www.mortonarb.org/pruning-trees. Wait for the right time. After you plant the tree, hold off for a year. Then prune some each year until it has grown too tall to prune…

Shreveport, Louisiana, Times, February 2, 2017: St. Mark’s Cathedral cuts down 100-year-old tree

A 100-year-old oak tree on the property of St. Mark’s Cathedral in Shreveport was cut down Thursday afternoon to make leaving its new pre-k facility safer to exit. The tree, located in the northwest part of the church’s property near Fairfield Avenue, was removed after months of working with neighbors to find another solution. “We sincerely regret the necessity of cutting down the tree,” Chris Carter with St. Mark’s said. The removal happened Thursday morning. The tree was situated to the left of a driveway. But, St. Mark’s needed to build an exit driveway to its pre-K facility. Carter said the tree was blocking the view necessary to turn onto Fairfield. “It was exceedingly dangerous because you couldn’t see cars coming from north of the school on Fairfield,” he said…

movetree170203Houston, Texas, Chronicle, February 2, 2017: How a Texas town is moving a historic 425-ton tree

For the most part, trees have been around much longer than most humans have been alive. Unfortunately, under threat of being chopped down for construction, trees don’t get to play the “first come, first serve” card. Breaking from the norm, a small Texas suburb near the state’s capital is undergoing an expensive and complicated effort to save an aging and historical member of the community, according to the Austin American-Statesman. A 260-year-old, 425-ton oak tree is being moved by the residents of Buda, Texas, a small town with a population of roughly 7,300…

Savannah, Georgia, WJCL-TV, February 2, 2017: Falling tree limb kills Beaufort man

A Beaufort man died Wednesday morning in a tree clearing accident on Spring Island. The Beaufort County Coroner said 47-year-old Samuel Whatley died of blunt force trauma to the head, neck and torso. The Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office said Whatley was working for the Spring Island Property Owners Association, clearing debris from a lot. Deputies say he was cutting a dead tree when part of the tree fell on him. The accident occurred at 3 Old Boathouse Lane on Spring Island in Okatie…

winterprune170202Good Fruit Grower, February 1, 2017: Researchers advocate whole tree renewal pruning

With a rev of his chain saw, Antonio Santillan whacked all the limbs of a 13-year-old KGB Chelan cherry tree down to nubs, leaving behind a waist-high clump of branches surrounded by a litter of cuttings in the snow. “Beautiful,” said Oregon State University Extension horticulturist Lynn Long to a chorus of laughter from a crowd of 30 or so growers at his winter pruning workshop Dec. 13, 2016, in John Byers’ orchard in The Dalles, Oregon. Santillan’s hard-core tree trimming demonstration provided attendees a close-up view of whole tree renewal, an experimental method of winter pruning that starts an entire tree over at one time. “This is an option we need to be considering,” Long said…

Energy Harvesting Journal, February 2, 2017: Money doesn’t grow on trees, but electricity might

Money doesn’t grow on trees, but electricity might someday. Iowa State University scientists have built a device that mimics the branches and leaves of a cottonwood tree and generates electricity when its artificial leaves sway in the wind. Michael McCloskey, an associate professor of genetics, development and cell biology who led the design of the device, said the concept won’t replace wind turbines, but the technology could spawn a niche market for small and visually unobtrusive machines that turn wind into electricity. “The possible advantages here are aesthetics and its smaller scale, which may allow off-grid energy harvesting,” McCloskey said recently in his ISU laboratory. “We set out to answer the question of whether you can get useful amounts of electrical power out of something that looks like a plant. The answer is ‘possibly,’ but the idea will require further development…”

prune170201Hutchinson, Kansas, Leader, February 1, 2017:Tree and shrub pruning time has arrived

This winter has been a swing of temperatures and everything from well below 0°F to unseasonably warm weather. Now that February has arrived it is time to consider pruning your trees and shrubs. An old rule of thumb was to prune in winter while the plant was dormant; well for best results we need to be a bit more specific than that. When to prune depends on the species, but for most, late winter into early spring is the best time to prune. Pruning near the end of the dormant season has several advantages, including: 1) Limited time remaining before the tree or shrub will begin its spring growth and healing process, 2) Avoid certain disease and pests, 3) Provides easier sight and access without deciduous foliage. Oak wilt can be a devastating disease and continues to spread throughout Minnesota and therefore oak trees should not be pruned during April, May, or June. If an oak tree is damaged or wounded during this time period it is best to mask the cut with a wound dressing material to help minimize the attraction of pests that may spread the disease…

London, UK, Daily Mail, February 1, 2017: The battle of Bathampton: Woman, 70, ‘who planted 50ft leylandii trees to block her neighbours’ view during 20-year feud’ faces court accused of tearing up GRASS in row over shared gravel path

A pensioner is to face trial for ‘illegally digging up some soil’ in the latest twist of a bitter neighbour dispute in an idyllic village that has lasted nearly 20 years. Valerie Vivian was led away by police in October after she was allegedly spotted digging up soil laid by her neighbours in a jointly-owned communal garden in Bathampton, Somerset. Her neighbours had laid the soil over a gravel path she had allegedly put down in a ‘land-grab’ without planning permission, which harks back to a planning dispute that started in 2001. Vivian’s neighbours previously accused her of planting a ‘barricade’ of 50ft leylandii trees on her land to block their views of Solsbury Hill in ‘an act of revenge’ after they opposed her application to build on the land…

lumberjack170201Three Percenter Nation, January 31, 2017: He is Cutting A Tree Down Then, Quickly Realizes Blue Liquid is Pouring Out

Every pair of parents is different. Some like to know the gender of their child. Others prefer to be surprised when the little one is born. But this lumberjack and his lumberjane are eager to find out what kind of bun they have in the oven. However, instead of a normal gender-reveal video, he decides to spice things up by cutting down a tree. And when he sees what is inside, he couldn’t be happier. Finding out the gender of the child usually happens after the 20th week although it could be a bit sooner or a bit later, depending on the pregnancy. And learning what you’re going to have is a big deal. Check out the unique and creative way this plaid-toting couple figured out how to reveal the gender of their baby. But first…let’s go cut down a tree [watch video]…

Indiana, Pennsylvania, Gazette, January 31, 2017: Area tree farmers set sights on resurgence

You may visit one every year in November or December to find the perfect fit for your Christmas decor, choosing among spruce, fir or pine. In Indiana County, you have ample choice of Christmas tree farms to make your selection. Christmas tree farming is a near $1 million industry in the county, ranking fifth in the state and 36th in the U.S., according to U.S. Department of Agriculture statistics from 2012, the most recent data available. While the industry locally is not as big as it used to be, with as many as 200 members belonging to the Indiana County Christmas Tree Growers’ Association in the 1960s, it’s still alive and doing well, according to Dave Johnston, of Johnston Nurseries in Creekside. “Today there is probably 25. It seems as though the younger people, the next generation, have found something else to do,” Johnston said. “A lot of people were hobby growers in the ’60s even. I’m going to say that those people that like to work don’t exist or they’re doing something else…”

tasmania170201London, UK, The Guardian, January 31, 2017: Tasmanian Tree Projects: an intimate portrait from an impossible perspective

The Tree Projects team spent 67 days documenting one eucalyptus regnans in the Styx valley of Tasmania. Using a combination of tree-climbing and elaborate arboreal rigging techniques, they produced an intimate portrait from an impossible perspective of one of the world’s largest individual flowering trees, which goes by several common names. Their photos document the process that resulted in an extraordinary ultra high-definition photograph. They used special camera rigs that travelled the height of the tree in the free space between them to create an 87-image composite. Wild weather made the process even more difficult. Photographer Steven Pearce says he had to wait 11 days to get the final few images, meeting ‘the mental challenge of being patient and believing it would happen’…

Newark, New Jersey, Star-Ledger, January 31, 2017: Man sues after tripping over discarded Christmas tree

A New Milford man has filed suit against the owners of an apartment building, claiming he suffered serious injuries after tripping over a Christmas tree left for trash collectors. Kyu Taik Chung, 73, claims in court papers he was injured March 12, 2015 on the sidewalk at 501 Linwood Avenue, where a co-op is located. The business owners are listed as 1170 Apartment Corporation, according to the suit filed Jan. 20 in Bergen County Superior Court. The suit accuses the landlord and/or maintenance personnel of “recklessly, carelessly and/or negligently” allowing an unsafe hazard to remain on the premises – the discarded Christmas tree. “The plaintiff suffered severe and permanent injuries; was disabled and disfigured; has suffered and will continue to suffer great pain and torment, both mental and physical,” Chung’s attorney, Albert H. Wunsch III, claims in the suit…

magictree170131San Diego, California, Union-Tribune, January 31, 2017: The case of the missing Heritage Park landmark

The Coral Tree Tea House in Old Town’s Heritage Park is open for business as usual, but the iconic coral tree that inspired its name has disappeared. Former state Sen. Larry Stirling, who lives nearby, calls his discovery of the missing tree like “being hit with a cold bucket of water while sleeping.” He did some sleuthing to learn the fate of the flowering coral, the park’s centerpiece for more than six decades. After his queries to Supervisor Ron Roberts went unanswered, Stirling invoked the public records act to request county documents from county CAO Helen Robbins-Meyer. The mystery is solved, thanks to an enlightening response from county Department of Parks and Recreation Director Brian Albright…

Mansfield, Ohio, News Journal, January 30, 2017: What you may or may not know about trees

Trees are a big subject. The largest trees in the world grow in California. It is the giant Sequoia, growing in the Sequoia National Park at Three Rivers in California. While not the tallest or broadest, this tree is named General Sherman. It has the largest volume. The trunk is wider than three elephants lined up in front. What is the age of General Sherman — only 2,200 years! While Ohio tree planting begins in late March and ends in late October, now is a good time to do some homework for future tree plantings. The more homework completed, the better the outcome of the tree planting. For a small tree, plant multiple trees if space permits. For example, plant three small trees and space 5 to 6 feet apart. Combined, three trees will have a much greater impact…

gin170131London, UK, Independent, January 30, 2017:London, UK, Independent, January 30, 2017: British gin is safe: Essential juniper ingredient conserved in fight against declining tree numbers

The future of gin is safe, according to horticultural experts who have collected juniper seeds from across the country to help conserve the declining tree species. Juniper berries, which take two years to mature slowly on the plant, help give the popular alcoholic drink its distinctive flavour, but the native UK species is in decline. The UK National Tree Seed Project has been set up by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, to collect seeds from juniper and other UK tree species and store them in the Millennium Seed Bank to ensure they do not vanish from the countryside. The project has “banked” 5.8 million seeds from 6,500 UK trees since May 2013, with the aim of collecting seeds from all native woody plants, and juniper is the first species to be fully collected and saved…

Chicago, Illinois, Tribune, January 30, 2017: Want to plant a tree this year? Rev up your research

As this wet winter flows toward spring, it’s already time to ask: What trees can I plant? Start your research now if you want to be ready to plant trees and shrubs starting in April. “Planning is important to make sure you choose the right species or variety for the conditions of your site.” said Sharon Yiesla, plant knowledge specialist at The Morton Arboretum in Lisle. Planting the wrong tree can lead to long-term problems, such as a crowded yard; an unhealthy, unattractive tree; branches that collide with the house or break in storms; or neighborhoods where trees are more vulnerable to disease and insects. Here are some tips from Yiesla for selecting a tree that will bring beauty to your yard and your community for years to come…

trim170130Carlsbad, New Mexico, Current-Argus, January 29, 2017: Tree pruning

We’ve talked about the value of trees and decided it was worth learning how to water and fertilize trees. This week, we are discussing pruning. Why prune a tree? There are some basic reasons on why one must prune a tree: (1)To remove dead and dying branches or branches with disease; (2) To promote growth; (3) To reduce the opportunity for accidents; (4) To make it more pleasing to the eye; or (5) If it was planted in the wrong place to start with and you want to extend its misery. The question I often receive is, “When is the best time to prune?” I asked this of a professor when I was in school. His reply was ‘when your knife is sharp’. He implied that if you have to use a saw, you waited too long. Over the last 30 some odd years, I’ve come to the conclusion that his answer is too simple. There are times you want to let a branch get big enough that you have to use a saw to prune it out. That said, you don’t want to wait too long either. Dead, dying or diseased branches can be pruned anytime of the year and should be as soon as they are noticed…

Manhattan, Kansas, Kansas AgLand, January 28, 2017: Tending to damaged trees affected by the ice storm that hit Kansas

After the ice storm that struck Kansas last weekend, many people – especially in the middle of the state – are dealing with damaged trees. Ward Upham, extension associate for Kansas State University, said tree damage often leaves homeowners with a decision about whether a tree can be saved. For those facing that choice, as well as cleaning up plenty of fallen limbs, the first step is to wait until all the ice has melted. “Slippery ice and chainsaws don’t mix,” said Upham, home horticulture rapid response coordinator for extension agents across Kansas and the state extension Master Gardener coordinator. “Check for downed power lines or hanging branches. Don’t venture under the tree until it is safe. If large limbs are hanging precariously, a certified arborist has the tools, training and knowledge to do the work safely.” The next step is to remove debris to avoid tripping over it…

peach170130Augusta, Georgia, Chronicle, January 28, 2017: Peach tree growers hoping for cooler weather

Despite seeing springlike temperatures for most of January, Jason Rodgers isn’t fretting over the peach crop. “It’s still early,” said Rodgers, vice president of operations at Titan Farms in Ridge Spring, S.C. “Sure, it’s been pretty warm lately, but our trees haven’t been asleep long enough to wake up yet. We’re not too concerned right now.” Between mid-November and late February, peach farms need between 800 and 1,000 hours of temperatures below 45 degrees to maximize potential growth. As of Jan. 25, Titan Farms had around 570 hours of dormancy. “We’re pretty much on schedule with last year,” Rodgers said. “At this point in 2016, we had around 600 hours, so we’re not far off…”

Los Angeles, California, Times, January 28, 2017: What all those dead trees mean for the Sierra Nevada

The ponderosa pine had taken root decades before the Revolutionary War, making a stately stand on this western Sierra Nevada slope for some 300 years, Nate Stephenson figures. Then came the beetle blitzkrieg. Now the tree is a dab in the gray and rusty death stain smeared across the mountain range. At the base of its massive trunk, a piece of bark has been cut off, revealing an etched swirl of insect trails. Higher up, naked branches reach out, as if from a many-armed scarecrow. “This was alive until the drought killed it,” Stephenson says mournfully. The U.S. Forest Service estimates that since 2010, more than 102 million drought-stressed and beetle-ravaged trees have died across 7.7 million acres of California forest. More than half of those died last year alone…

vandal170127Marin, California, Independent Journal, January 26, 2017: Vandalized tree in Marinwood open space to be cut down

An oak tree in Marinwood open space whose trunk was cut almost all the way through is dangerous and must be taken down, an official said. “About 85-90 percent of the trunk is gone, so we’re going to have to cut it down,” said Shane DeMarta, recreation director for the Marinwood Community Services District. “It’s sad because we’ve lost about 10 oak trees in the last month because of storm damage.” The tree, located on Grasshopper Hill above Highway 101 just north of the Lucas Valley exit, was attacked by a vandal with an ax over a period of several weeks, DeMarta said. If it were to fall in the wrong direction, it could slide down the hill and damage residents’ back yards, he said…

Arlington, Virginia, Connection, January 26, 2017: Tree Stewards gather to celebrate new year

For a Tree Steward, having fun while protecting local trees is important. It’s just that for a Tree Steward, fun means something a little different. At their annual potluck celebration of the new year, on Jan. 17, the Tree Stewards of Arlington and Alexandria planned some entertainment: There was wine, mulled cider, food, and speeches: Master Gardener Scott Ford, demonstrated how to use a whetstone to clean and sharpen bypass pruners, loppers, shovels and other gardening tools. Ford harked back to his grandparents’ farm and how tools were sharpened back in the day. He demonstrated on the family shovel which has been in the Ford family for four generations. The Tree Stewards kicked off their First Tree Steward Prognosticator Contest. Participants would predict whether or not the groundhog will see its shadow, and what the last frost date will be at National Airport. Next on the agenda was Matthew Barker, Alexandria city arborist, providing a talk on “Champion and Notable Trees.” Barker is on a mission: to find more champion and notable trees in this area. “Did you know there are 200 species of tree which do not have a champion? Or that 75 percent of champion trees are found on private property (like your back yard)?” he asked. That champion or notable tree is out there waiting for a local resident to find it, he said, and suggested a website on the ways a tree qualifies and an interactive website on where the trees are that have been identified…

rings170127NASA, January 26, 2017: Tree rings provide snapshots of Earth’s past climate

If you look out the window, you can tell if it’s rainy or sunny right now, but that doesn’t say very much about your region’s climate—the area’s average weather conditions over a long period of time (30 years or more). However, that big tree in your backyard has been keeping a detailed climate record for decades. Trees can live for hundreds—and sometimes even thousands—of years. Over this long lifetime, a tree can experience a variety of environmental conditions: wet years, dry years, cold years, hot years, early frosts, forest fires and more. If you’ve ever seen a tree stump, you’ve probably noticed that the top of a stump has a series of concentric rings. These rings can tell us how old the tree is, and what the weather was like during each year of the tree’s life. The light-colored rings represent wood that grew in the spring and early summer, while the dark rings represent wood that grew in the late summer and fall. One light ring plus one dark ring equals one year of the tree’s life. But how do trees keep track of this information?

Palm Beach, Florida, Post, January 26, 2017: Delray’s famous 100-foot Christmas tree must be replaced, but will it?

It towers above downtown Delray’s tallest buildings, glows with holiday lights and draws thousands of visitors during Christmastime. But Delray’s iconic 100-foot Christmas tree is also not safe enough to to go up next year, city leaders learned this week. Now Delray Beach is faced with costly options to replace the tree in time to keep the 20-plus year tradition alive this coming Christmas. Structural engineers hired to sign off on the tree’s structural integrity would not give the OK, city officials said Tuesday. “That means that we have been very lucky in putting up a tree that is structurally unsound … ” Mayor Cary Glickstein said. “We all feel that the tree is certainly iconic, the tradition is important, but we’ve got public safety issues…”

dogwood170126Camden, New Jersey, South Jersey Times, Jan. 25, 2017: This tree is on fire: Meet Rutgers’ newest plant

Imagine having to wait five years to see what color your child’s eyes would be. That was the situation faced by Rutgers University plant biologists who were intent on breeding a deep pink dogwood tree in time for the university’s 250th anniversary. For years they’d been meticulously cross-breeding dogwoods with the goal of producing a hardy, fast-growing plant with blossoms of deep pink – a shade of pink that wouldn’t exist in nature without man’s help. Young dogwood trees usually take five years to produce blossoms, which means the average horticulturalist will see only a handful of “generations” during a career. They are planted and monitored in one of Cook College’s nurseries…

New Orleans, Louisiana, Times-Picayune, Jan. 25, 2017: Christmas tree project is popular way to rebuild Louisiana’s coast

Jason Montagino has seen coastal erosion displace his neighbors and hurt the fishing business in the Jean Lafitte area for as long as he can remember. “The land means a lot. You don’t want to see it erode away,” Montagino said. “When the land erodes away, then the people don’t have a place to live.” Louisiana’s coastline has lost an area the size of Delaware, about 1,900 square miles, since the 1930s, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. That’s a rate of a football field’s worth of land every 38 minutes. One popular and seasonal state project, however, is not only stopping erosion but rebuilding the coast. The Christmas tree marsh restoration project takes Christmas trees that Jefferson Parish residents leave curbside and builds them into barriers to break the waves caused by tides and boats, limiting how much the water erodes the land…

chestnut170126Science Line, Jan. 25, 2017: The American chestnut tree has a good shot at making a comeback

Henry David Thoreau’s description of a hike in the woods near Walden Pond includes a tribute to “boundless chestnut woods” and the pleasure he takes in harvesting a bushel of chestnuts, which he calls a “good substitute for bread.” But this delight is scarcely available to hikers in the Massachusetts towns of Lincoln and Concord today. Few mature American chestnut trees remain in this region and across the whole of eastern North America. The tree species, part of the beech family of trees, fell victim to a fungal disease introduced by a foreign chestnut species in the early 20th century. Although many stumps remain in the wild and send up new shoots of green, they can only re-sprout so many times before they completely succumb to the Cryphonectria parasitica fungus and die away. When Europeans first settled the eastern United States 200 years ago, the American chestnut covered 25 percent of the surrounding forests and served as an important food source for animals such as bears and birds. The trees also yield a highly rot-resistant wood that settlers fashioned into furniture, housewares and boxes ranging “from cradle to grave,” says Brian McCarthy, a forest ecologist at Ohio University…

NPR, Jan. 25, 2017: If these trees don’t get time to chill, farmers will be out on a limb

Tom Coleman is busy pruning branches off pistachio trees that aren’t budding at an orchard just north of Fresno, Calif. He farms and manages more than 8,000 acres of pistachios across the state. “Here’s an example of some hanging down nuts from last year that just wouldn’t come off because of the position on the tree, so we want to remove that,” says Coleman. Coleman worries these trees won’t get enough sleep this winter. Crops like pistachios, peaches and almonds need a certain amount of cold weather every year. This is what the agricultural industry refers to as chill hours…

mailbox170125Washington, D.C., Post, January 24, 2017: In a community of million-dollar homes, a fight over a $500 mailbox ends in court

The $35 wooden mailbox Keith Strong bought in 2009 seemed charming and functional for the home he shared with his wife in a posh golf community in the suburbs of Washington. It was a newer version of the mailbox the homeowners association previously approved and had sat at the end of their driveway since the couple moved to their Bowie-area home four years earlier. But no more than two months after Strong installed his new mailbox, he received an order to dump it — for a $500 mailbox upgrade. The board of the homeowners association voted to require all residents in the Woodmore golf community to buy metal mailboxes, monogrammed with the letter “W” and mounted on a decorative post. The $500 mailbox mandate angered Strong and others in the community, launching him into a seven-year fight that finally ended this month when a Prince George’s County judge signed, sealed and delivered a ruling that the board of the Pleasant Prospect Home Owners’ Association overstepped its bounds with its postal pronouncements…

San Diego, California, Union-Tribune, January 24, 2017: San Diego adopts urban forestry plan to boost tree canopy, slow climate change

Neighborhoods in San Diego, especially those in low-income and urban areas, would get significantly more trees under a five-year “urban forestry” plan the City Council unanimously approved on Tuesday. The proposal aims to help the city meet the goals of its ambitious climate action plan, which calls for increasing the percentage of San Diego covered by trees from 13 percent to 35 percent over the next two decades. Supporters said the 32-page plan would also boost property values, improve air quality, enhance wildlife habitat and shrink energy costs by reducing the need for air conditioning. Increasing a city’s tree canopy has also been shown to reduce storm water runoff, lower crime rates, boost public health and strengthen communities, city officials said…

birdsnest170125Dallas, Texas, Morning News, January 24, 2017: What to do with ‘bird’s nest’ or ‘spaghetti’ roots around your tree

Question: I have a 15-year-old live oak that appears to be planted incorrectly and with the wire mesh still wrapped around it. I have carefully started to expose the root flare. However, I am uncovering a mess of roots and I think it could be due to the wire mesh. The roots have seemed to mushroom upward due to this. The tree has always appeared in good health but I know root flare exposure is important for the long haul. Have you ever encountered a planted tree where the wire mesh was still wrapped around it? How aggressive can I be at removing the mangled roots? They are almost like wood blocks grown together. Please note, I have used a hand blower and broom to great success with other trees, but this one just seems so odd and I want to do the right thing.

Answer: Sounds like you are doing a great job. Those “bird’s nest” or “spaghetti” roots are artificially trying to grow up to get air. All of that should be cut off. Don’t worry that it will hurt the tree. Go ahead and be aggressive. Also remove as much of the wire and burlap as you can. This is the perfect time to do the work…

San Francisco, California, Chronicle, January 24, 2017: Ukiah woman feared tree that crushed her to death

Investigators were still trying to figure out on Tuesday why a 70-foot-tall oak tree toppled on a quiet street in east Ukiah, smashing through the roof of a single-story home and crushing to death a 35-year old woman who was lying asleep in bed. Erika Tyler was killed in the predawn hours on Saturday when the enormous tree, about 7 feet in diameter, plunged to earth. Tyler’s mother, Connie Tyler, told reporters that her daughter and her daughter’s boyfriend, Kyle Jones, feared the tree would fall and had asked their landlord to remove it. “They were scared of that tree all the time,” Connie Tyler told the Santa Rosa Press Democrat. Jones, who had been sleeping in the same bed beside Tyler, escaped unharmed…

nola170124New Orleans, Louisiana, January 23, 2017: 7 essential things to consider before picking a tree to plant in your yard

Last Friday (Jan. 20) was Arbor Day in Louisiana, the traditional time to celebrate trees by planting them. And plant them we should. Trees provide a wide variety of benefits to our outdoor environment. Before you head out to the nursery, though, there are some important things you need to consider. Selecting the right trees requires careful deliberation. There is a common mistake people make in selecting trees. They try to pick a tree without considering the purpose it will serve or the growing conditions where it will be planted. In all earnestness, people often ask me to recommend “a good shade tree.” Asking a horticulturist to recommend a good shade tree is like walking into a shoe store and asking the salesperson to recommend a good pair of shoes. Without knowing your shoe size, your taste, your budget and a variety of other factors, the salesperson won’t have a clue how to help you…

New York, N.Y., January 23, 2017: Man dies after getting head stuck between car and tree in Brooklyn

A 52-year-old man driving in reverse on a Brooklyn street was killed Monday morning when he accidentally wedged his head between his car and a tree, police sources said. The bizarre incident happened on W. 7th St., near Kings Highway, at about 9:45 a.m. Sources said Xin Xheng Lin had moments earlier stuck his head out the window but did not see the tree as he reversed his 2004 Toyota minivan.

boston170124Boston, Massachusetts, Globe, January 19, 2017: When trees fall, no one listens

A week after taking ownership of 637 Hale St. in Beverly last August, David Hayes brought in a tree service to remove multiple trees on his property and 14 more on a right of way shared with a neighbor. “I went out to Rockport and 4½ hours later, I returned to find 14 trees, including a 75-year-old maple, on my [side of the] right of way cut down,” said Nathalie Majorek, the abutter. “There was no warning, no permit, just devastation. I could not believe my eyes. I cried.” According to Majorek, her story should be a warning to other homeowners that cities and towns across the region offer little protection for trees. To make the situation more frustrating, “The consequences for builders or developers that remove them without permits are so minimal, many just figure it as part of the cost of doing business,” Majorek said. Philip Klimowicz, Beverly’s forestry and grounds foreman, backed up Majorek’s perception. “We rarely pursue fines because it is too expensive to take the builders to court,” he said…

Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, Star, January 23, 2017: ‘Reserve’ plan OK’d with trees

Following nearly two hours of public input and official discussion, the Sun Prairie City Council on Tuesday Jan. 17 gave conditional approval to The Reserve, a 313-unit single family neighborhood on the city’s northwest side that includes a site for a new elementary school and a new city park site. Among the conditions placed on developer Matt Elsing were that the developer plant five evergreens — either white cedar or arbor vitae — per lot. The trees will be planted as close to the northern edge of the property utility easement — provided all utility easement users agree — in each lot backing up to current homes along Stonehaven Drive in the Shonas Highlands, Hickory Grove and Ridge Crest neighborhoods as far east as one lot east of Broadway Drive. Trees will not be planted in drainage easements as determined by city staff, according to the condition. Like last week’s Sun Prairie Plan Commission meeting, this week, neighbors also showed up to oppose the plan. Most of those opposed said the developer did not work with neighbors to come up with his proposal to plant pine trees along the property lines of Shonas Highlands homeowners. The owners of eight homes in Shonas complained about the loss of greenspace north of their homes and requested the commission require additional greenspace…

forestmap170123Woodworking Network, January 22, 2017: Forest Service counts 96.6 billion trees in latest tally of U.S. forests

Trees outnumber people 300 to 1 in the United States, with woodlands covering one-third of the country in the U.S. Forest Service’s latest census. Only trees at least 5 inches in diameter are counted in the U.S. Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis National Program, which has continuously counted the forest population since 1930. An acre with at least 10 percent tree canopy qualifies are a forest for purposes of the census, reports Jo Craven McGinty in the Wall St. Journal. Dennis May, a U.S. Forest Service program manager, tells McGinty the census was established to answer the question, “Are we wisely using the forest without impacting its health, condition and stature.” The U.S. exported $8.7 billion in forest products in 2016 – lumber, paper, logs, veneer, pulp, wood pellets, casegoods and other items – putting the sector right up there with soy beans and corn…

Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Sun-Sentinel, January 20, 2017: How a Delray Beach neighborhood worked together for the sake of one tree

At the edge of a short dead-end street, at the bottom of a hill in the city of Delray Beach, a sausage tree grows 30 feet high, with red blossoms, green leaves and thick, sturdy vines. It’s African in origin, ornamental to boot, a home for birds and iguanas, growing long oval fruit. Michael Sebastian owns more than an acre and has plans to build homes. So he needed the street to continue, right through the tree. But all of the eight homeowners who live on the block want to see the tree live, preferably in the same spot. “The tree should never have been there in the first place,” Sebastian said. It sits on top of sewer lines and in the path of the road. It was improperly planted and the city planned for the street “years and years ago,” he said. But Sebastian isn’t the “big, bad developer” some residents see, he said. He’s an avid nature photographer and at first didn’t want the through-street, he said…

ukvandal170123London, UK, The Sun, January 22, 2017: Mystery tree chopper fells 200 ancient beeches leaving environment chiefs ‘devastated’

A MYSTERY tree feller chopped down around 200 ancient beeches – leaving horrified environment bosses stumped. The hedgerow beeches are thought to be around 150-200 years old and their felling has been called “devastating”. Inspectors were visiting countryside in Blackwood, near Caerphilly, South Wales, when they came across a field of the stumps. Natural Resources Wales have launched an investigation into the felling, and have said anyone wanting to chop down so many veteran trees would need a license…

Elyria, Ohio, Chronicle-Telegram, January 22, 2017: Lorain Council, residents view tree conditions at park

A small crowd walked through Oakwood Park on Saturday afternoon to see and hear about the condition of the trees that are slated to be removed. Safety-Service Director Dan Given said he called the meeting as a way for City Council and residents to see that many of the remaining trees are past their useful life as they get closer to 100 years of age. Parks and Recreation Crew Leader and city arborist Mark McIlwaine said the pin oaks throughout the park have a similar lifespan to that of a human — anywhere from 70 to 100 years — but there’s no way to tell when the end will actually come. “Just because you don’t necessarily see rot in the trunk when you cut a tree down, doesn’t mean it’s not getting ready to die,” he said. “If the tree is leaning or if you can see rot in the branches, that’s a pretty good indication that the process has already begun though…”

advocate170120San Jose, California, Mercury-News, January 19, 2017: Landmark old-growth Advocate Tree felled by storms

The Advocate Tree, a 1,000-year-old landmark redwood tree in the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park, was toppled by last week’s storms. On Monday, hikers clambered over a slick log jam in Aptos Creek to pay their respects to the 260-foot goliath, which lay broken into several monumental pieces. A bouquet of red roses rested on the tree’s 40-foot-tall root ball. “This was my favorite tree. I used to come here all the time,” said Eric Chitwood of Aptos, who had brought his children and their friends out to see the fallen redwood. The Advocate Tree grew at the bottom of a steep slope on the Old Growth Trail, roughly half a mile from the state park’s entrance station parking lot…

Green Bay, Wisconsin, WGBA-TV, January 19, 2017: Family won’t take down Christmas Tree while the Packers are winning

A Green Bay family is keeping their Christmas Tree up while the packers are winning. Tyler and Hilary Krueger put the tree up the weekend the Packers beat the Eagles on November 28th. Since then team has won eight straight games. “We’re as confident as we were last week. This a magical season and as long as the magic tree is up, the packers will keep it up,” said Tyler Kueger…

pecan170120Austin, Texas, Monitor, January 19, 2017: Developer, city arborist agree on heritage tree removal

In a rare exception to the city’s 95 percent preservation rate for heritage trees, the Planning Commission approved staff’s recommendation of a variance during its Jan. 10 meeting that would permit applicant Stantec Inc. to remove two heritage trees in order to construct a new hotel at 400 Josephine St. In fact, the applicant plans to remove a total of five heritage trees, but the other three do not have any stems greater than 30 inches in diameter, so their removal can be approved administratively by the city. The other two heritage trees, pecan trees #908 and #919, are large enough that a variance was required. Zach Hunter, the landscape architect on the project, said that multiple building layouts were drafted to determine which design would have the least harmful effect. “The layout that we have affects the two trees that we found to be in the least healthy condition,” he said at the meeting…

Angus, Scotland, BBC, January 19, 2017: Man killed felling tree was ‘a genuine tragic accident’

The death of a man killed when he was crushed by a tree he was cutting down has been ruled “a genuine tragic accident” by a sheriff. John Phillips died aged 29 on land in Angus owned by the family of his life-long friend, David Cochrane. The two men were felling trees beside a road at Auchindorie Farm, near Kirriemuir, on 14 March, 2013 when the incident happened. Sheriff Gregor Murray said that the accident “could not have been avoided.” In a written judgement following a fatal accident inquiry last December, Sheriff Murray said: “Self-evidently, tree felling is an inherently dangerous process…

bugs170119St. Paul, Minnesota, Pioneer Press, January 17, 2017: Cabin-owner alert: Chinese-made log furniture has bugs

Rustic log furniture imported from China into Minnesota and Wisconsin has been found to be infested with invasive insects that could damage native trees. Both states’ agriculture departments on Tuesday confirmed multiple incidents of two different species of Chinese bugs hitchhiking on rustic, whole-log furniture in 2016. The brown fir beetle was found in rustic pine log furniture imported from China, while the velvet longhorned beetle was discovered in rustic walnut log furniture, wrongly described as hickory, also from China. “We’ve had invasive insects imported into the state in other material, but this is pretty much a first with furniture,” said Mark Abrahamson, an entomologist with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture…

Oxford, Mississippi, Eagle, January 18, 2017: Tree farmers center of landscape ordinance discussion

As the city of Oxford continues to eye land further out in Lafayette County for annexation, city leaders are being met with obstacles on how much to require large landowners to meet current city ordinances dealing with tree removal and mitigation. Before the Oxford Board of Aldermen voted on approving an amendment to the city’s Landscaping and Tree Preservation code during Tuesday’s regular board meeting, Mayor Pat Patterson brought up a concern shared by himself and Alderman John Morgan in regards to tree farmers, who are currently outside of city limits, and the kind of hardships they could encounter if annexed into the city…

pawpaw170119Appalachian Magazine, January 18, 2017: America’s forgotten fruit tree: The Appalachian Banana

It’s difficult to even begin to comprehend the amount of mountain knowledge that has been lost over the past half-century in the hills of Appalachia — so many of the basic skills for simply surviving have vanished with the dying off of our region’s old timers and many fear we have lost basic skill sets that will take generations to re-learn. Today, very few people living in the mountains of Appalachia even know how to identify sassafras, let alone make it into a tea. Same thing goes for a dozen other effective home remedies that are now ancient history, tucked away in some dusty book one seldom reads. One of the greatest losses of mountain knowledge over the past generation is, in my opinion, how our country simply forgot about what was once upon a time its favorite fruit tree: The Paw Paw. The largest edible fruit to grow in the United States, the paw paw was often referred to as “the poor man’s banana” and is native to 26 different states…

Chattanooga, Tennessee, Times-Free Press, January 17, 2017: Tree trimmer falls to his death off Signal Mountain bluff

Emergency responders on Wednesday afternoon recovered the body of a man who fell to his death while trimming trees off the side of Signal Mountain earlier in the day. Shortly before 3 p.m., a team of firefighters and rescue personnel could be seen from the road near the east-facing bluff, working together to hoist the body with a rope system at the scene in the on Forest Park Drive. Four men heaved solemnly on the rope between the trees, walking several yards back through the woods until the body had been pulled high enough to carry it to a nearby ambulance. Recovery efforts were underway by early afternoon after an employee of Big Woody’s Tree Service reported at 11:22 a.m. the man had fallen about 150 feet while working on private property, according to a news release…

bermuda170118Hamilton, Bermuda, Royal Gazette, January 17, 2017: Look after your tree, it will grow on you

Trees: we often take them for granted, without any thought of their value and usefulness. They are found on the coastline, along roads in woodlands and, of course, our gardens, and yet do we ever stop to think how and why they got there and what is their purpose? Trees improve spaces by bringing aesthetic value, especially in areas of hard landscaping; they delineate spaces of differing use. They can assist in circulation and guide movement in both vehicular and pedestrian areas, to inform direction and destination. In Bermuda, they are ideal for giving shade. The main factors to consider when selecting trees are location, reason for planting and type of tree. Most properties do not have the area of land for planting medium or large trees; only larger properties and open spaces have the capacity to accommodate such species. Trees around buildings are likely to cause problems, especially from the extensive root zones found on trees. The “rule of thumb” is that they equal the top growth at the drip line of foliage. Pruning back branches does nothing in prohibiting root growth, so the exercise is a waste of time…

Greenville, S.C., News, January 17, 2017: Outdated landscape practices

Landscape practices and techniques evolve over time. I remember back in the Dark Ages when I first got my feet wet in the glorious world of landscaping, old timers were full of advice for me about the best way to do things. Some of these ancient practices are tried and true, and are some of the best methods ever devised for successful gardening. However, time has proven that other of these practices have turned out to be somewhat less than desirable. Take pruning paint, for instance. Apparently, sometime back in the forties, it was the rage to paint all your pruning cuts with a black tar-like sealer. I’m only guessing this ancient practice began in the forties. Believe it or not, I wasn’t even born then. I suppose this practice began in the forties because in the seventies literature began to appear in scientific publications that pruning paint provided no benefit. However, to a young twenty-something way back then, old timers who learned their techniques in the forties thought that it was sacrilegious to make a pruning cut without applying a liberal dose of tar to the wound. The argument was that pruning paint would seal the cut and keep insects at bay…

tree170118Lincoln, Nebraska, Daily Nebraskan, January 17, 2017: UNL creates strategy for tree infestation

UNL’s City and East campuses have a combination of 9,000 trees—368 of which are ash trees. That population is in danger of the Emerald Ash Borer, a beetle that has infested ash trees across the country since 2002 and now poses a threat to ash trees in Nebraska. “It’s a discreet little insect; it’s not something that you’ll see everywhere,” said Jeff Culbertson, assistant director of operations in Landscape Services. “The damage done to the trees takes some time, it doesn’t happen overnight. It’s kind of a slow death for the ash. In preparation for that, we’ve come up with a plan.” Culbertson has aided the university in developing a strategy to deal with this issue. Initially, the university plans on using insecticide on 10 percent of the ash trees on campus, Culbertson said. After that comes taking a look at the remaining population…

Discover Wildlife, January 17, 2017: Does tree sap freeze?

When water freezes it expands, so ice formation within the confines of a tree trunk is potentially lethal. Tree heartwood, formed from annual rings of water-transporting xylem, is made of dead cells, and water can freeze within these without fatal damage (though in extreme conditions ice expansion has been known to split trunks). The real hazard comes from water freezing in the narrow zone of living cells that lie just below the bark, and are essential for the tree’s survival and regrowth in the spring. Each of these cells has a rigid, dead wall enclosing a bag of living sap that’s confined within a delicate membrane…xmastreedump170117St. Louis, Missouri, Post-Dispatch, January 16, 2017: Man illegally cut thousands of tree tops from national forest land in Minnesota

A Grand Rapids man has pleaded guilty to cutting thousands of tree tops from black spruce in the Chippewa National Forest. Seventy-year-old Joseph Edminster pleaded guilty Friday in U.S. District Court to one count of theft of government property. Prosecutors say he admitted to cutting more than 2,700 tree tops from the forest from October 2008 to October 2014. He then admitted to selling the tree tops to wholesalers for use as Christmas decorations. The wholesalers then sold them to retailers in Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois. It’s estimated Edminster stole more than $24,000 worth of spruce tops from federal land since 2008…

Hartford, Connecticut, WFSB-TV, January 16, 2017: Tree crews perform work ahead of Tuesday night’s wintry mix

With the wintry mix headed our way, many people are preparing for the worst. When we hear ice storm, we think rock salt and potential power loss, but something that can really be damaging is heavy or falling trees. “You could have a whole tree failure, which would be terrible,” said Laura Mele, certified arborist for Arbortech. With only a day to spare before a storm drops a wintry mix on western Massachusetts, Arbortech Tree Services is fitting in some last minute service…

indianabat170117Middletown, New York, Times-Record, January 15, 2017: Tree-clearing regulation pits tiny bats against developers

The Lorax would not be happy about this. The furry creature spoke vigorously on behalf of the trees that humans were mowing down in the 1971 Dr. Suess book bearing his name, and he’d have plenty to say about the log pile and stumps on a cleared site next to Route 17M. A group of would-be beer-makers who planned to build the Kikkerfrosch brewery there stripped the property clean a year ago to race a deadline for tree removal, but then abandoned the project seven months later without starting construction. Today, a for-sale sign for the 83 acres sits next to the road again, with a lunar landscape behind it. Each year around this time, the buzzsaws and excavators get busy, clear-cutting land for development to meet a March 31 deadline. The reason? For the next six or seven months, builders are barred from removing trees to avoid disturbing the habitat of the Indiana bat, a little animal that nestles itself under bark and in crannies and enjoys protected status as an endangered species…

Cleveland, Ohio, WEWS-TV, January 14, 2017: Dead trees lining Cleveland city streets pose a safety hazard — but residents can’t cut them down

Some Cleveland residents have growing safety concerns about dead trees lining city streets, trees that they aren’t allowed to take down or trim according to city law. Kate Marks told News 5 a 50-foot dead tree on her tree lawn had been threatening her home for more than three years.
Marks said she has called Cleveland’s Division of Urban Forestry numerous times time to have them take it down, but so far she’s been given nothing but promises. “I think it’s unsafe,” said Marks. “I’m waiting for someone to walk by with a stroller and get hit right on the head with a branch. This is a big tree…”

treecom170113Los Angeles, California, Times, January 12, 2017: Who keeps Huntington Beach green? The Tree Society

Jean Nagy loves trees. Take a drive through Huntington Beach and many of the trees you’ll see are there because of her efforts. Nagy, a Huntington Beach resident for about 30 years, has spent decades bustling about at City Council meetings and otherwise mobilizing the community for beautification efforts. She started the nonprofit Huntington Beach Tree Society in 1998 to take the lead in those efforts. Relying on public donations and state grants, the tree society has worked with local government to develop parkland and other city properties, particularly Central Park. Nagy, 76, said the group has taken on so many projects over the years that she can’t even remember the number…

London, UK, Telegraph, January 12, 2017: James Bond star Daniel Craig in row with neighbors over 50ft tree

James Bond star Daniel Craig and his actress wife Rachel Weisz are at the centre of a row with their neighbours over a 50ft-tall tree. The couple, who live in a multi-million pound home in north London, face chopping the large plane tree down after its roots were blamed for causing subsidence to a neighbouring property. But despite them not challenging an application to fell it, other longstanding neighbours have described the move to destroy the tree as “unforgivable”. Margaret Crowther has lived opposite the property for more than five decades. She has opposed the application to fell it…

canopy170113American Forests, January 12, 2017: Why we no longer recommend a 40 percent urban tree canopy goal

One of the most frequent questions I receive, as American Forests’ Director of Urban Forest Programs, comes from individuals developing tree canopy goals for their jurisdiction or region. They have come across numerous references to American Forests’ recommended 40 percent tree canopy goal but cannot find a source citation to include in planning documents. The reason for that is simple: research no longer supports a universal 40 percent tree canopy recommendation, and neither does American Forests. That benchmark was established in a 1997 American Forests article “after analyzing the tree canopy in dozens of cities over the [prior] five years and working closely with the research community.” While incredibly valuable and groundbreaking at the time, technology and research have significantly evolved over the past 20 years, leading to a consensus that more nuanced approaches are necessary…

Portland, Oregon, The Oregonian, January 12, 2017: Who to call when a tree’s blocking your way

The weight of heavy snow is causing trees, branches and limbs to crash to the ground, blocking Portland streets and sidewalks. If you see a downed power line, call 9-1-1 immediately. If you encounter a fallen tree or branch on City of Portland streets, parks and properties, and it’s not near a downed power line, call Portland Parks & Recreation Urban Forestry at 503-823-TREE (503-823-8733) or email Trees@portlandoregon.gov. Dave Schamp, of Operations and Maintenance, a division of Washington County’s Department of Land Use & Transportation, says his crew is overwhelmed by calls about roads now, but “we will help anyone sort out if a tree is in a street managed by the city or county…”

osha170112Beverly Hills, California, Patch, January 11, 2017: Cal/OSHA launches safety awareness campaign after recent fatal tree-trimming accidents

In the wake of four recent tree-trimming fatalities, including one in Los Angeles County, Cal/OSHA Wednesday launched a statewide safety awareness campaign for tree service companies, landscapers and other similar businesses. The four recent cases: (1) on Jan. 6, a worker in Los Angeles County fell about 60 feet to his death when the branch to which he was tethered broke; (2) on Dec. 1 in Mariposa County, a worker was struck by a branch and killed; (3) on Dec. 4, a worker in San Bernardino County suffocated when dry palm fronds collapsed and trapped him; and (4) on Jan. 9, a worker in Siskiyou County was struck by the tree he was cutting to clear power lines.”Cal/OSHA’s safety awareness campaign aims to protect the lives of tree service workers,” said Cal/OSHA Chief Juliann Sum. “Employers in this high-risk industry need to be aware of, and take steps to minimize, the hazards to their workers. We will cite employers that are not in compliance with safety requirements…”

Seattle, Washington, West Seattle Blog, January 11, 2017: It’s about more than a tree, say West Seattle neighbors whose challenge gets a hearing tomorrow

It started with a tree. It’s grown into something more. Tomorrow, the city Hearing Examiner will hear arguments in the fight over whether a house will replace a 100+-foot tree at 3036 39th SW. We first wrote about it seven months ago, in early June, when a neighborhood 9-year-old was going door to door to let people know that the Ponderosa Pine’s days might be numbered. Its fate was seemingly sealed by this preliminary city opinion, sought right after the sale of the site, including an existing house at 3038 39th SW, was finalized in November 2015. Allowing a new house on a site smaller than 3,200 square feet – this one is measured at 3,166 sf – requires a “special exception.” The city announced in October that it would grant one…

bristlecone170112Paonia, Colorado, High Country News, January 11, 2017: Why a scientist cut down the oldest living tree

Great Basin National Park in eastern Nevada is one of the most remote and least visited of our national parks, with Wheeler Peak as its central feature at 13,063 feet. On the mountain’s flanks are ancient bristlecone pines, among the oldest living trees on earth, and it was an incident that occurred in this grove — the cutting down of a bristlecone called the Prometheus Tree — that brought the species to the world’s attention in 1965. The tree’s death sparked a worldwide reaction and was instrumental in the creation of Great Basin National Park. It also haunted the life of the scientist who had asked the Forest Service to cut the tree down. Only after the bristlecone had been felled did the scientist and Forest Service discover that what they had killed was then the world’s oldest known living thing. And we still haven’t forgiven them…

Princton, New Jersey, Princeton University, January 11, 2017: Tree-bark thickness indicates fire-resistance in a hotter future

A new study has found that trees worldwide develop thicker bark when they live in fire-prone areas. The findings suggest that bark thickness could help predict which forests and savannas will survive a warmer climate in which wildfires are expected to increase in frequency. Trees in regions where fire is common, such as savannas and the forests of western North America, tend to have thicker bark, while trees in tropical rainforests have thinner bark, researchers at Princeton University and collaborating institutions reported Jan. 9 in the journal Ecology Letters. Bark protects the inside of the trunk from overheating and is one of a handful of adaptations that trees use to survive fire. “We found large-scale evidence that bark thickness is a fire-tolerance trait, and we showed this is the case not just in a particular biome such as a savanna, but across different types of forests, across regions and across continents,” said first author Adam Pellegrini, a NOAA Climate and Global Change Postdoctoral Fellow at Stanford University who led the study while a graduate student in Princeton’s Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology…

rockefe170111Boston, Massachusetts, Christian Science Monitor, January 10, 2017: Storm topples California drive-thru tree. Can we save the remaining sequoias?

No one knows when exactly the northern California sequoia named Pioneer Cabin first put down roots. But when a storm toppled the ancient tree Sunday night, nature fans around the world mourned its death. After the Calaveras Big Tree Association announced, “The Pioneer Cabin Tree has fallen!”, Facebook users posted more than 2,700 messages with condolences on the group’s page. Pioneer Cabin belonged to the species Sequoiadendron giganteum, better known as “giant sequoias.” Though not as tall as their relatives, the Coast Redwoods, giant sequoias are more massive. In 1880, tourism promoters cut a tunnel through Pioneer Cabin’s base. Three other drive-through trees remain in California, but don’t expect any more. Most of the state’s redwoods and sequoias are now under state or federal protection. “Tunnel trees had their time and place in the early history of our national parks,” the National Parks Service writes on its website. “But today sequoias which are standing healthy and whole are worth far more…”

AP, January 10, 2017: Weakened by drought, trees are falling in rainy California

Drenching winter rains combined with the punishing effects of six years of drought are causing trees to topple across California, in some cases with deadly results. At least two people have been killed in the past month. Seemingly sturdy oaks, palm trees in Southern California and giant sequoias farther north have been collapsing. Experts say that in some instances, the dry spell had weakened or killed the roots or trunks, and the soggy soil and wind caused the trees to tip over. One woman who struck and killed by a tree while walking on a Northern California golf course Saturday. A woman posing for photographs as part of a wedding party was killed and five others were injured by a falling eucalyptus tree in Southern California last month. A towering conifer in front of Joe Lauri’s home in Fresno came crashing down during the weekend storm, giving in to shallow roots and the weight of rain-soaked pine needles. Lauri said he was relieved the damage wasn’t worse…

sequoia170111New York City, New York Times, January 10, 2017: New York today: What’s next for the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree?

What goes up must come down. The city said goodbye this weekend to the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. But even though the holidays are over, the 94-foot-tall Norway spruce will continue adding light to New Yorkers’ lives. For the 10th straight year, the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree has been donated to Habitat for Humanity and will be used in the building of homes for struggling families that need affordable housing, or for people who lost their homes in natural disasters. The wood has gone to places such as upstate New York and Pascagoula, Mississippi…

Popular Mechanics, January 10, 2017: How NATO uses trees to stop tanks

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization has produced a video showing how NATO troops would stop tanks using nothing more than handful of well-placed explosives. The resulting obstacles, known since ancient times as abatis, are capable of slowing armored columns in dense terrain. Taken during NATO exercise Iron Sword last year in Lithuania, the video follows Canadian combat engineers as they attempt to slow down simulated enemy tanks. The engineers used explosives to fell trees across forest roads, creating an area difficult for armored vehicles to cross. Ideally the trees are felled in a web-like pattern, so that an attempt to push through them just piles up more trees to create a more difficult obstacle. The technique actually dates back to Roman times, when it was used to slow down foot soldiers and stop horse-driven vehicles, including chariots and wagons. Back then, tree branches were used instead of whole trees. While the weight of enemy vehicles has increased by a factor of about 30, it’s also easier to fell trees due to explosives and—if you watch the NATO video closely—Stihl chainsaws…treeinwinery170110San Francisco, California, KNTV, January 9, 2017: Winery owners ‘fortunate’ to avoid disaster after large oak tree falls onto guest house

A Napa County family dodged a disaster when a giant oak tree came crashing down their home during this past weekend’s powerful storm. The heritage oak, which was hundreds of years old, came down on the side of a guest house at White Hall Winery in Saint Helena. The damage to the home included a large hole in the ceiling of the kitchen. The home’s bedroom caught the brunt of the impact. “We’re fortunate nobody lives here full time,” White Hall Winery owner Katie Leonardini said. “We will do the best we can to make it right again…”

Los Angeles, California, Daily News, January 9, 2017: Mother, daughter ‘escape with their lives’ from burning Christmas tree

A dried out Christmas tree was the source of a fire Monday inside of an apartment in Valley Village, but a working fire alarm saved a mother and her daughter before serious injuries, authorities said. The blaze was reported just after 11 a.m. at 4717 Ben Avenue in Valley Village, said Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman Brian Humphrey. It was doused 15 minutes later. “They saw the tree burning,” Humphrey said, adding he had no further information about the pair. “They were amazingly able to escape with their lives…”

treeonhouse170110Los Angeles, California, Daily News, January 9, 2017: Large, leaning tree threatens Lake Balboa apartment building

A large tree is leaning precariously close to an apartment building today in the 6900 block of De Celis Place in the Lake Balboa area, the Los Angeles Fire Department is reporting. Residents were asked to remain outside the structure until the city Department of Building & Safety arrives on scene, said LAFD spokesman Brian Humphrey. Humphrey wouldn’t speculate on what was making the tree lean but noted that the area has been hit with “considerable rain.” The area is north of Vanowen Street and west of Hayvenhurst Avenue and the Van Nuys Airport…

Europa Wire, January 9, 2017: Research: Ash trees which can resist the killer dieback fungus may be more vulnerable to attacks by insects

Ash trees which can resist the killer dieback fungus may be more vulnerable to attacks by insects, according to new research. Scientists from the universities of Exeter and Warwick examined trees which are resistant to ash dieback and – unexpectedly – found they had very low levels of chemicals which defend against insects. With efforts under way to protect ash trees from dieback, the scientists warn that selecting trees for fungal resistance could put them at risk from insects. Aside from ash dieback, the other major threat to European ash trees is the Emerald Ash Borer beetle, which has already devastated vast tracts of ash in the USA and is currently spreading westwards across Europe…

treeonhouse170109San Francisco, California, KTVU-TV, January 8, 2016: Tree crashes into San Francisco home

A tree has crashed into a San Francisco home displacing two families totaling seven people. It occurred at 166 Brookdale and San Francisco Fire reports that there are not any injuries. At around 7:30 a.m., officials with the San Francisco Fire Department reported that a tree fell onto a Visitacion Valley apartment building, located at 166 Brookdale Ave. The displaced residents included two families, according to fire officials. They’re being assisted by the American Red Cross. In anther incident, a tree reportedly fell on a man near Beach Chalet, located at 1000 Great Highway, fire officials said at around 9:40 a.m. The man appeared to be ok, however he was taken to San Francisco General Hospital with minor injuries, according to fire officials…

San Francisco, California, Chronicle, January 8, 2017: Woman killed by falling tree on stormy San Ramon golf course

A woman taking a walk on an East Bay golf course Saturday morning was struck and killed by a falling tree in what authorities say may be the first casualty of the weekend storm. Emergency crews responded to the Canyon Lakes Golf Course in San Ramon just before 11 a.m. where they found a woman knocked unconscious by a downed tree, according to the San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District. The woman, who was not identified, was taken to the San Ramon Regional Medical Center where she died…

sequoia170109Washington, D.C., Post, January 8, 2017: Winter storm fells one of California’s iconic drive-through tunnel trees, carved in the 1880s

One hundred and thirty-seven years ago, well before the Calaveras North Grove was purchased by the California State Park System and renamed the Calaveras Big Trees State Park, the land’s owners carved an enormous hole in the base of one of its sequoia trees. On Sunday, that tree fell. This particular, 150-foot tall tree boasted a wide base — about 33 feet in diameter — which featured a large fire scar, an attribute that makes it easier to tunnel through. And that’s exactly what the owners created, a tunnel wide enough for an automobile to drive through. The idea of passing through an enormous tree immediately proved to be a hit. Named the Pioneer’s Cabin Tree because the created chamber exposed the trunk’s hollowness, giving it a chimney-like appearance and calling to mind the image of an old log cabin, the tree quickly became one of the park’s most popular features…

Seeker, January 7, 2017: Sound Waves Give Tropical Trees a Checkup

Like a book and a cover, you can’t always judge a tree by how it looks. Fungus can rot a living tree from the inside, leaving behind a healthy-looking but hollow trunk. Typically the rot is only seen when the tree is cut down. When a tree decays, it releases carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere, contributing to climate change. And the tropics are home to 96 percent of the world’s tree diversity, according to researchers, and those trees store a quarter of the world’s terrestrial carbon. To get a better read on the health of tropical forests, researchers are now using sound to measure decay in trees. The research, published in the journal Applications in Plant Sciences, was conducted collectively by a group of college professors, grad students and high school teachers and students, who used a new way to examine 1,800 live trees in the Republic of Panama…

inoculate170106Tallahassee, Florida, Democrat, January 5, 2017: Tips for hiring a tree contractor

In my role as a municipal arborist, I receive requests from homeowners wanting advice on how to handle contracting out tree work. Similar to taking your car to a mechanic, it is an area that intimidates people. Tree work is expensive, but it is a specialized field that most people do not have a great deal of knowledge about. Attempting the work yourself can create a safety hazard. Therefore, I have put together some tips to help homeowners navigate the leafy world of contractual tree service.
Tip #1 – Budget money: As a property owner, you have a responsibility to maintain your trees for the safety and aesthetics of your residence as well as your neighbors. Regular budgeting for tree maintenance, whether it is every year or every three years, should ensure that you stay on top of trimming and corrective pruning. Pruning in a timely manner will usually prevent an unplanned tree emergency at a later date and costs far less. Keep in mind that the budgeted amount needs to be realistic to the quantity and complexity of your tree needs…

Sacramento, California, KTXL-TV, January 4, 2017: Tree service companies busy following storms

This week’s storm knocked down many trees across Northern California, keeping tree services busy. The rain water has turned soil into mud, causing some roots to cut through it like a knife through warm butter. “We have a lot of them on fences, light poles, parking lots,” said Terry Stevens, the owner of Tree Tech in South Sacramento. Stevens said far too many of his clients waited too long to take care of dead trees around their property. “You want to do maintenance on trees two to three years, depending on the type of tree… People save a lot of money if they just take care of it early,” Stevens said…

trim170106Winter Park, Florida, Observer, January 5, 2017: Tree trimmers threaten Winter Parkers with fines

A healthy tree canopy has long been a symbol of Winter Park, but one alleged tree-trimming company might be using that fact to take advantage of residents. Winter Park warned residents in a press release last week that a tree trimming company is going door-to-door and claiming work must be done on their trees, or they risk facing a fine for violating city code. The tree trimmers have reportedly claimed that the city doesn’t have its own urban forestry department, and that residents should hire them on the spot to trim their trees. Winter Park Urban Forestry Manager Dru Dennison said that the city has received about a dozen calls from residents who’ve witnessed the tree trimming scam over the past two months…

Nursery Management, January 5, 2017: Society of Municipal Arborists names chestnut oak 2017 Urban Tree of the Year

The Society of Municipal Arborists has announced its 2017 Urban Tree of the Year: the chestnut oak (Quercus montana) (syn. Q. Prinus). The 2017 SMA Urban Tree of the Year is native to much of the Eastern United States. Hikers from New York to Tennessee who ascend to dry ridges will often see the deeply furrowed, blocky barked trunks of chestnut oak (Quercus montana) (syn. Q. prinus). The bark is so distinctive, it may be the only ID feature one needs. There’s growing interest in using chestnut oak in the urban environment because it is pH-adaptable, handles dry soils and periods of drought, has a beautiful mature form, requires minimal pruning, and tends to be free of major pests and diseases…

bradford170105Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, MV Times, January 4, 2017: Pear tree removal on Clough Lane delayed

Town administrator Jay Grande told Tisbury selectmen on Tuesday that the removal of two Bradford pear trees on a property on Clough Lane in Vineyard Haven has been delayed. Mr. Grande spoke with the building contractor, and the town now has more time to find out if the trees, a variety of the Callery pear, are considered public shade trees, which would bar the property owner from cutting them down. Residents have expressed concerns about their possible removal. The public was alerted after the building contractor, who is building a guest house, requested on behalf of the property owner that the trees be cut down. “They’re going to allow us some additional time for due diligence with our town files, in terms of if there’s anything that would point us in the direction that these trees are under the shade tree jurisdiction of the tree warden,” Mr. Grande said…

Seattle, Washington, Times, January 4, 2017: Girl, 8, killed when tree crashes into Oregon home

High winds toppled a towering evergreen tree onto a house near the Oregon coast, killing an 8-year-old girl who was inside, authorities said Wednesday. Zaylee Schlect was taken to a hospital, but could not be saved. The girl’s father, a volunteer firefighter, was working Tuesday and responded to the 11:15 p.m. call with other responders in the town of Otis that a girl was trapped. Others were inside the home, and no one else was hurt. Capt. Jim Kusz of North Lincoln Fire and Rescue, which is a volunteer department, said he estimated the tree to be around 70 feet high and 42 inches across. He said it was downed by high winds that also brought down power lines and other smaller trees in the area. “We had very high winds here last night, and snow on the coast, which is a very rare event,” Kusz said over the phone…

stump170105Bernardsville, New Jersey, The Progress, January 4, 2017: Commemorative tree cut down in Roseland

A commemorative tree in honor of Armella S. Kent, who taught school in Roseland from 1919 until retiring in 1961 with 42 years of service, was cut down in Roseland without the K-6 Noecker school board’s knowledge. Kent received the honor of having a copper beech tree planted in her name in front of 19 Harrison Ave. along with a commemorative plaque affixed to a granite block in front of the tree; at that time the building was the home of Harrison School, and like the preK-6 Lester C. Noecker School today located on Passaic Avenue, it was the only school in town. Kent died in 1988 at age 93, and she is remembered also at Noecker School by an interior wall plaque announcing that the Armella S. Kent Library is located through the doors to the right of where it is mounted; Noecker replaced the Harrison School in 1968. When it was noticed recently that the copper beech had been cut down and the plaque removed from the granite block, members of the school board were unaware of it when notified at their meeting Thursday, Dec. 8…

Defund.com, January 4, 2017: Need to remove a tree stump? Use this incredible formula to get it done!

The following tips mostly assist homesteaders, but if you’re clearing a lot with the intention to construct a bug out or survival shelter this formula will also help in that situation as well. One of the most difficult parts of managing land is to make sure it’s cleared for habitation. Habitation can include clearing it for gardening, shelter, or to create a line of sight that’ll allow you to see when visitors are approaching. When it comes to the aspects of clearing land, removing tree stumps is considered one of the most time consuming and labor intensive. Especially if the tree is of any substantial size, it can be difficult work that often leads the person attempting to remove it frustrated and sore…

childkilledtree170104Olympic Nat’l Park, Washington, Washington Post, January 3, 2017: Child killed when evergreen tree falls, strikes SUV in Washington state

A child was killed and four people were injured when a tree crashed and struck a vehicle in Olympic National Park on New Year’s Day, authorities said. Calling the fatal incident in Washington state an “unusual accident,” Clallam 2 Fire-Rescue wrote on Facebook that responders were called to the crash site on Sunday afternoon. A “large evergreen tree” fell and struck an SUV traveling to Federal Way, Wash., according to the post. The department noted on Facebook that details were “still sketchy” but said in the Sunday night post that park rangers at the scene told firefighters that two “pediatric patients” were out of the SUV, as well as one person identified as a grandparent. A second person, also identified as a grandparent in the social media post, remained trapped in the SUV…

Rehobeth, Alabama, KTLA-TV, January 2, 2017: 4 Killed When Tree Falls on Rural Alabama Home During Tornado

Four people were killed when a tree fell on a home as a tornado swept through a rural Alabama community on Monday evening, authorities said. The four were in a residence in the unincorporated community of Rehobeth when the storm struck. Crews were still working late Monday to remove the bodies from the structure, said Kris Ware, spokesman for the Houston County Emergency Management Agency. The National Weather Service reported that a tornado was in the area at the time of the incident. Its size and strength will be determined when survey crews have examined the extent of the damage. Houston County Sheriff Donald Valenza said seven people were inside the home when the storm hit…

dogdies170104Wichita, Kansas, KAKE-TV, January 3, 2017: Tree service responds to mystery surrounding dog’s death

A tree service has issued a statement after a Wichita’s family’s dog was found dead following the company’s service. Westar Energy sub-contracted Wright Tree Service, based in Iowa, to clear off limbs near power lines. The Caldwells said the tree service employees entered their backyard despite a “no trespassing” and “beware of dog” sign. The Caldwells returned home to find their dog dead. Wright Tree Service issued the following statement on Friday: After a thorough investigation, Wright Tree Service has determined that our crew members played no role in causing the death of Jennifer and Tony Caldwell’s dog. All information gathered indicates that the dog was deceased prior to Wright Tree Service arriving to work in the area. Our thoughts are with the Caldwells as they mourn the loss of their dog…

New York City, New York Post, January 3, 2017: Why Christmas tree sales are still booming after the holiday

The Big Apple’s ever-present Christmas tree vendors don’t go home on Dec. 26, they just head south — south Brooklyn, that is. Yuletide capitalism booms after Christmas Day in Brighton Beach because members of the Russian Orthodox church believe Jesus’ birth was Jan. 7, according to tree dealers, who hawk their post-season saplings from vans and even bodegas in the “Little Odessa” section of the neighborhood. “We’re not even here before Christmas, we sell mostly in Manhattan. Most of what we are doing here is selling off our surplus. We’ve been busy every day,” one vendor told the Brooklyn Paper, which first reported the story. To earn the last-chance cash, the self-proclaimed Tree Men stake out spots on major thoroughfares, such as Coney Island Avenue, and offer bargain-basement prices for the sometimes dried-out evergreens, vendors said…

treeinspace170103Madison, Wisconsin, January 2, 2017: Blue Sky Science: How long does it take for a tree to grow in space?

Q: How long does it take for a tree to grow in space?
A: It’s a complicated question because, while researchers have grown spruce seedlings on the International Space Station, they haven’t grown full-size trees. Using knowledge of how trees operate on Earth, scientists can guess what’s going to happen when they’re grown in space. The tallest trees on Earth are the giant redwoods that are about 300 to 400 feet tall. Gravity is the main reason those trees are not any taller. For a tree to get that massively tall, it has to be strong. Tree height is also limited because trees must draw water from the ground up to their leaves. As the water is pulled up through the plant, at some point the water column gets so long that it’ll break because of gravity. In space that problem doesn’t exist. Without gravity, plants growing on the space station grow long and thin and don’t need to lay down a lot of supportive tissue. Plants can draw water more easily — because there’s no gravity pulling on the water column — and get large without weighing anything…

Phoenix, Arizona, KNXV-TV, January 2, 2017: Child taken to hospital for burns after Christmas tree fire ignites Phoenix home

The Phoenix Fire Department says a 6-year-old girl suffered burns to her hands and body after a Christmas tree fire ignited in a Phoenix home Monday. The fire was first reported around 9 a.m. at the home near Peoria and 19th avenues. Firefighters say the girl was transported to the hospital for her burns but she is expected to be OK. Two other children and two adults were also in the home but made it out without injury. Phoenix fire said the girl’s father recently passed away and the family had a remembrance candle near the Christmas tree…

tacoma170103Tacoma, Washington, News-Tribune, January 3, 2017: Saving Tacoma’s tree canopy — an impossible dream?

In 2011, an analysis using 2009 data indicated Tacoma’s urban tree canopy stood at 19 percent — covering 9.38 square miles of the city. That wasn’t good enough. For one, the number was below the national average for cities the size of Tacoma. Trees are important, after all, reducing greenhouse gases, cooling the air, producing oxygen, filtering storm water and increasing property values. A city’s tree canopy “is used as a proxy for environmental health,” explained Mike Carey, Tacoma’s urban forest program manager. More needed to be done to expand the City of Destiny’s urban canopy, especially since the city adopted a goal in 2010 — 30 percent canopy coverage by 2030. Goals are good. But asked this week how Tacoma will meet its vegetation aspirations, Carey begins by laughing somewhat skeptically and then details the long list of challenges…

Somerset, UK, January 2, 2017: Christmas tree meets premature end after fears it was on the verge of falling over

A Christmas tree in Somerset has met a premature end after fears it was on the verge of falling over. The 20-foot tree in Wellington Square in Minehead was chopped down by fire crews after reports it was unstable. Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service said it had cut down and made the tree safe after the council had disconnected the tree’s lights…

moontree161230Cincinnati, Ohio, Enquirer, December 29, 2016: A tree from seeds that went to the moon is set to be cut down

There is a tree, nearly a quarter century old, hidden among boarded up buildings and freshly razed lots in South Fairmount. The tree is one of only 90 surviving trees like it documented in the world. And it slated to be cut down sometime in the next two years. Thousands drive by the sycamore every day at the foot of the Western Hills Viaduct. Most have probably never noticed the 30-foot tall tree, but NASA has. It’s a moon tree, specifically a second-generation moon tree, a tree whose seeds have taken the long way to find home. The journey of the tree, and others like it, started in 1971 when Apollo 14 launched from Kennedy Space Center. Alan Shepard, Edgar Mitchell and Stuart Roosa were making mankind’s third trip to the moon. Roosa was a former U.S. Forest Service smoke jumper, a firefighter that parachutes into remote forest fires. His former employer asked him to conduct an experiment and take a batch of tree seeds into space…

Yahoo News, December 29, 2016: Your unwatered Christmas Tree is a massive fire hazard

Christmas is over, and that means it’s time to take down your tree. While some people throw their tree out as soon as the holiday is over, others like to leave it up a little longer. Whatever your preference, you should know that as long as your tree remains in your house, you should water it daily. If you don’t, that tree becomes a massive fire hazard. The National Fire Protection Association has a video that demonstrates just how dangerous an unwatered tree can be. If you let your tree dry out, all those needles become potential fuel. In a matter of seconds your tree could become a raging inferno. And all it takes is one short on your massive string of lights. The NFPA estimates that over 200 fires are started each year from Christmas trees, resulting in an average of ten deaths and over $17 million in property damage…

coptree161230Atlanta, Georgia, WXIA-TV, December 29, 2016: Tree falls on Atlanta police cars

A tree crashed down on three Atlanta Police patrol cars Thursday morning. 11Alive’s Neima Abdulahi reports that the tree fell on the vehicles around 8:30 a.m on Lakewood Way. No one was in the vehicles when it happened. It was not immediately known how much damage the cars sustained. “At first glance, the damage seems pretty heave,” Atlanta Police Officer Donald Hannah said. No one was injured. “Had someone been in any of these cars, they could have been hurt,” Hannah said. “We’re very glad the cars were empty at the time it happened.” A cold front brought some strong storms into north Georgia in the early morning hours… Officials said weather likely played a role in the downed tree…

Albany, New York, Associated Press, December 29, 2016: Oak tree-killing fungus spreads to more places in New York

A devastating fungus disease that kills oak trees has been found in more places in New York state. Oak wilt made its first appearance in New York in 2008 in the Schenectady County town of Glenville. The Department of Environmental Conservation and U.S. Forest Service removed about 100 trees from a suburban neighborhood to keep the disease from spreading. On Thursday, the DEC announced that the disease has been detected in Brooklyn and the Suffolk County towns of Babylon, Islip, Riverhead and Southold. It was also found in Canandaigua in Ontario County earlier this year. There is no known treatment for oak wilt fungus other than to remove the infected trees, as well as any surrounding host oak trees to prevent its spread…

bark161229Austin, Texas, Pam Penick, December 28, 2016: Losing a tree diseased by hypoxylon canker

A few days before Christmas, the front garden endured a major change: a fatally diseased live oak near our front door had to be removed. I’d had an arborist out the week before to give me a bid on general tree trimming, and he immediately spotted the sloughed-off bark and telltale whitening of hypoxylon canker affecting this tree. I’d been concerned about the tree myself for the past year, and consulted with another arborist last spring, but he dismissed the sloughed-off bark as just a normal process. I had my doubts, and my fears were confirmed with the diagnosis of late-stage hypoxylon canker, a fungal disease I’d never heard of. Oak wilt, a live-oak killer here in Texas, was the only tree disease on my radar. Hypoxylon, I learned, lurks in most healthy trees, waiting for an opportunity — a tree weakened by drought or other stress — to attack…

Lifehacker.com, December 28, 2016: Your neglected Christmas tree is a huge fire hazard

If you haven’t watered your Christmas tree since you forgot about it on the 26th, now is the time to get it out of your house. Unwatered Christmas trees are a huge fire hazard, as this video from the National Fire Protection Association clearly shows. Fires that start with a Christmas tree are also deadlier than the average house fire, according to a report by the same group. If you like keeping your tree around, though, keep it watered from the start. The second tree in the video was re-cut immediately before being put into its tree stand, and was watered routinely. It can still catch fire, but it’s a slow burn rather than an instant conflagration…

deadtree161229Sonora, California, KVML Radio, December 28, 2016: Possible help for costly tree removal

With more than 29 million dead trees estimated across California due to drought and the bark beetle infestation, finding money to help private property owners remove trees can be hard to find, unless you know where to look. The funds are limited, according to the Calaveras County Tree Mortality Task Force, which acknowledges that dollars available through State and Federal Grant programs only address state and federal lands, local roads and infrastructure. For most property owners, taking down the dead and dying trees on their property is a daunting task not only physically and financially. The county provides this list of possible grants available to property owners…

Street Insider, December 28, 2016: The Forest Foundation gives 15 ways to repurpose a Christmas Tree

Christmas is over, but you hate to throw away your tree. The Forest Foundation releases 15 ways to repurpose your tree.
“Knowing that every year 77 million Christmas trees are planted and then tossed out a few weeks later, made me cringe,” said Lindsay VanLaningham, Executive Director of the local nonprofit. “Trees are biodegradable and serve many functions in nature. So before you throw it to the curb, try some of these fun and easy ways to repurpose your tree…”

elm161228New London, Connecticut, The Day, December 27, 2016: Huge elm tree to be cut down in Mystic

A massive elm tree located in a triangular traffic island at Broadway and Willow Street will be removed in the coming days. Town of Stonington Tree Warden Dan Oliverio said Tuesday that the tree is being removed because it is dead and poses a hazard. In addition, he said Eversource would like it taken as down because its large branches loom over power lines. Oliverio said he has notified residents who live near the tree of its planned removal and has posted a notice on the tree. He said no one has opposed its removal but neighbors have requested that a new tree be planted in its place. Oliverio, a highway department employee who also serves as vice chairman of the town’s Beautification Committee, said he plans to propose to the Board of Selectmen that a new tree be planted there and the mulch be replaced with grass. He said he is researching the appropriate type of tree to plant there and said any new tree would be maintained to avoid future problems with power lines…

Springfield, Missouri, KYTV, December 28, 2016: Businesses team up to clean up shoddy tree trim mess

Nixa Tree trimmers left a huge mess in a woman’s yard. Many saw the story and wanted to help. Ryan Lawn and Tree and Pinegar Construction teamed up to make a wrong a right. Riki Lipe hired Show-Me Tree Service. They didn’t finish the job. Show-Me Tree Service has an F rating with the Better Business Bureau. The company does not have a business license to work in Springfield. Crews went door-to-door. Folks with Pinegar Construction and Ryan Lawn and Tree donated their services. “It’s not necessarily the time of year. it’s being able to help out the community and help someone who was taken advantage of,” said Sean Pinegar with Pinegar Construction…

trimscam161228Orlando, Florida, WFTV, December 27, 2016: Tree-trimming scammer steals nearly $400 from 85-year-old Osceola woman

The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a pair of burglaries involving a duo who distract their victims by offering tree trimming services. The sheriff’s office had already released information on one burglary involving an 85-year-old woman, but announced Tuesday that a second burglary the same day is believed to be connected. Both burglaries were reported Monday. The 85-year-old victim told deputies that a man showed up at her home claiming to be a tree trimmer, but instead stole nearly $400. The woman, who asked not to be identified, said she opened the door to a man who said he was cutting tree limbs for her neighbors and needed to take a look at her trees too…

Dallas, Texas, Morning News, December 27, 2016: How to hang a tree swing without damaging the tree

Question: How does the Dirt Doctor feel about attaching swings to trees? I considered getting one for the grandkids but was afraid it might damage the tree.

Answer: I have no problem with swings in trees if done correctly. Wrapping anything around limbs is bad and will definitely damage those limbs. On the other hand, connecting the swing lines, ropes or chains to bolts or large screws connected to single points does no more damage than pruning cuts. The penetrations will callus over and be compartmentalized as the tree grows. The safest thing for people is using stainless steel bolts that go all the way through the limb, but large eye screws or hooks can be good if installed properly. Note: The points of attachment need to be at exactly the same height for the swing to swing straight. If the limb is growing at an angle, a longer bolt can be used at the higher part of the limb…

genome161227BBC, December 26, 2016: Ash tree genome sequenced for first time

The genome of the common ash (Fraxinus excelsior) has been sequenced for the first time – an important step in the battle against ash dieback disease. Researchers, writing in Nature, found UK ash trees seemed to have more tolerance than Danish trees, which were devastated by the fungal pathogen. The disease reached the UK’s wider environment in October 2012. However, the scientists warned that the species faced another serious threat – the emerald ash borer insect. “We sequenced an ash genome for the first time and… compared it to other plant genomes and we found that a quarter of the genes were unique,” explained co-author Richard Buggs from the School of Biological and Chemical Sciences at the Queen Mary University of London…

Montrose, Colorado, Press, December 23, 2016: Walnut trees may not be best choice

The possibility of growing a nut tree that will produce nuts in our area is not a straight yes or no answer. After the incredible fruit-producing year that we experienced this past season, I think we’re all excited to pick produce right from our own back yard tree, but our weather and soil conditions limit the number of nut trees that can grow here. Walnut trees have always done fairly well in our area, and I know of some fantastic, big, mature walnut trees that are doing very well up on Spring Creek. English walnuts are a bit more cold hardy than Black walnuts, but they should both do well. Here comes the “however.” Walnut trees take about 10 years to produce. That’s not all bad though. The foliage and trunk make a pretty shade tree. With that said, another drawback is a disease known as “Thousand Canker Disease”, and yes, it is as bad as it sounds! The disease is devastating, causing the death of thousands of walnut trees, all because a small Walnut Twig Beetle carries the fungus that causes the disease. So far it hasn’t been a significant problem in our area, but it has the potential of killing all of the walnut trees if it ever gets ramped up here. So I don’t think I would recommend planting a walnut tree at this time…

recycle161227Reno, Nevada, KOLO-TV, December 26, 2016: The morning after, Christmas tree recycling underway

The morning after, Christmas 2016 is barely yet a memory, but some apparently are eager to move on. Their trees are coming down and showing up at a recycling center. “I think it’s cool,” says Tierra Smithson, a Girl Scout volunteer manning a recycling site. “I mean it’s nothing I would probably do. I like to look at my tree, but it’s cool they bring it here.” Here–in this case–is a parking lot at Shadow Mountain Park in Sparks, one of six collection sites set up each year by Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful. It’s one of a few post-holiday fates for a Christmas tree. Some send them to the landfill, others unfortunately dump them in the desert. This is the back-to-the-environment responsible destination. “They get turned into wood chips and used throughout Reno, Sparks and Washoe County Parks and the leftovers are available to any property owner in the area to use in their yards,” says Matthew Salazar of Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful…

Harlan, Kentucky, Daily Enterprise, December 26, 2016: Make an outside resolution

Modern living can make us too busy to relax, and I’m not the first to tell you that’s not healthy. Humans of whatever age need to play and let those stress generated hormones that make the heart race and adrenaline flow get out of our system. To many this may involve some form of exercise through various sports, but another way is to just get outside and become more attuned to what’s going on around you. It focuses you to live in the now, with no thought of past or future concerns. A connection with nature is proven to be healthy and therapeutic, yet severely lacking these days, especially with kids. So let me encourage you to resolve in 2017 to get outside a little more, to be still a little more, and enjoy and learn more about this wonderful place we live in. Here are some possibilities. Take a walk in the woods and look closer at the bark of trees. Notice that each species is different; some are smooth, some are rough with discernible patterns. With practice you can identify trees just by the bark…

london161223New York City, New York Times, December 22, 2016: London Plane: A tree with gritty roots

The London plane tree is able to withstand the many assaults of urban life. It is often found squeezed tightly into tree pits surrounded by impermeable asphalt and concrete, making rain absorption difficult. Despite their potential size when fully grown, the trees adapt remarkably to cramped quarters, even while overshadowed by buildings and other structures. Often, they are pruned to within an inch of their lives to fit under phone lines or to avoid streetlights. They survive not only runoff from salted roads but also a consistent barrage of raw fertilizer by neighborhood cats and dogs. And yet the London plane is everywhere throughout New York City. In fact, the last Street Tree census conducted by the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation found that more than 15 percent of all street trees were London planes. They are far more than just pretty plants; these trees provide energy savings and measurably improved air quality — to say nothing of the acres of valuable habitat they provide for people and animals alike. It is interesting to note that the London plane tree is actually a hybrid between two tree species, the American sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) and the Oriental plane tree (Platanus orientalis). The tree looks enough like its American parent that it is frequently mistaken for a sycamore, as both have smooth grayish brown bark, which exfoliates to reveal a tan or pale green trunk beneath. The basic explanation for this unusual adaptation is the bark’s lack of elasticity; it cannot expand as rapidly as the tree inside it does. But this peeling bark is a useful adaptation, which helps to eliminate harmful insects and parasites. Though the tree may look as if it suffers from a bad sunburn, the patchy, peeling bark actually works in its favor…

Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Eagle, December 22, 2016: Lancaster creates tree cost-share program

A new cost-share program through the Lancaster Tree Commission is expected to double the number of trees planted in the city next year, replacing landscapes devastated by the emerald ash borer. Lancaster Parks and Recreation Superintendent Mike Tharp Jr. said it’s become increasingly important to find ways to plant more trees since hundreds of ash trees were removed during the last few years because of the beetles. Tharp also is a member of the Tree Commission. In 2014, it was estimated there are about 9,000 trees in city parks and rights of way, with 250 to 300 of them ash trees in need of removal. “Once the beetle gets in them, it’s done,” Tharp said. “River Valley Highlands was just chock-full of them. We’ve literally taken out 100 ash trees from River Valley Highlands. Probably more…”

lodgepole161223Earth-Sky.org, December 22, 2016: Why pine trees smell so good

I have never met a person that did not enjoy the smell of a pine, spruce, or fir tree. Be it the Christmas tree in your home or a grove of conifer trees in the forest, they smell sharp, sweet, and refreshing. What gives conifer trees their scent? Well, most of that piney odor is due to chemical compounds called terpenes. Terpenes are composed of carbon (C) and hydrogen (H) atoms, and they are built from different numbers of isoprene molecules, which have a chemical formula of C5H8. Small terpenes, known as monoterpenes, contain two isoprene units and have a chemical formula of C10H16. Pinene, which has a piney odor, is a monoterpene. Limonene, which has citrusy odor, is also a monoterpene. These two molecules, among others, give conifer trees their distinctive scent. Larger terpenes are known as diterpenes, triterpenes, and so forth, and they can take the shape of long chains or rings. Many diverse types of organisms produce terpenes besides conifers, including insects, marine algae, and sea slugs…

Madison, Wisconsin, WISC-TV, December 22, 2016: Which trees are best, worst when selling your house

Believe it or not, the types of trees in your yard can impact your ability to sell your home. According to Realtor.org and NAR’s 2013 Profile of Buyers’ Home Feature Preferences, a home’s curb appeal was important. Of those surveyed, 17 percent said it was important to have a wooded lot with a lot of trees. Twenty-nine percent said they were willing to pay more money to have trees added to lots that seemed too bare. So what trees are buyers looking for? Find out what trees are most desirable to home buyers, and which can hinder them from buying your home, according to HouseLogic and Realtor.org. Home owners are looking for low-maintenance trees that make their lot look fuller. HouseLogic ranks these trees amongst your best options: Crape Myrtle Sugar Maple Smoke Tree Saucer Magnolia Japanese Flowering Cherry Northern Red Oak Eastern Red Cedar Fig…

jack161221San Jose, California, Mercury-News, December 21, 2016: Oakland: Lawsuit over teen’s tree-climbing death seeks to prevent such tragedies

Jack Lewis was known for his exuberance and adventurous spirit. The Oakland Technical High School junior was always the first to jump in the water or climb the tree, his loved ones say. Just over a year since the 16-year-old Oakland resident died in a tree-climbing accident at Lake Merritt, his family and friends on Tuesday gathered near the site of his fatal fall to talk about a lawsuit they hope will prevent similar tragedies. “The goal of the lawsuit really is to make this area safer, to change the city of Oakland’s apparent priorities,” said attorney John Winer, who filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the city of Oakland on Monday on behalf of the Lewis family…

Mobile official: Giant Christmas tree was not requested by President-Elect Donald Trump’s team

President-Elect Donald Trump’s campaign team “did not specifically demand anything” related to a Christmas tree displayed during Saturday’s rally, Chief of Staff Colby Cooper said late Tuesday. “During the stadium preparations, we discussed the President-elect’s theme and message,” said Cooper. “It was very much Christmas themed and future of America focused. I suggested the Christmas tree as a possible backdrop to coincide with his messaging and podium sign that said ‘Merry Christmas’ and ‘Thank you.'” He added, “I did this based on my professional experience supporting event preparations for a President, Secretary of State and National Security Advisor. The world was watching and we needed to do better than the aged and worn out scoreboard behind the President-Elect.” Cooper’s comments come after City Attorney Ricardo Woods, following Tuesday’s Tree Commission meeting, said it was his understanding that the Trump campaign team requested the large Christmas tree that served as a back drop to the rally…

falltree161221Chicago, Illinois, Tribune, December 21, 2016: Be thankful for trees — they’re more beneficial than you think

Some gifts are bright and beautiful. Some gifts are deep and lasting. We get both kinds from trees. Their beauty is obvious: The lacework of tree branches dusted with snow, the green shade they bring to summer streets and yards, the bright explosion of fall color, the grace they add to our landscape, the sense of continuity and richness they bring to our lives. Yet trees give us much more that is harder to see, says Jessica Turner-Skoff, whose role as treeologist at The Morton Arboretum is outreach about science and trees. “Countless, countless scientific studies have shown the gifts trees give to us,” she says. These aren’t abstractions; they have been studied and measured…

Los Angeles, California, Daily News, December 21, Gardening: Go barking up a tree for the answer to this third-grade question

It happened that a certain student, full of philosophical curiosity, went to a sage, someone steeped in ancient wisdom, and complained, “I don’t understand. Why did God create a world where money is a necessity of life?” The sage paused for a moment. “The real question,” he finally answered, “is ‘Why did God create a world where food is a necessity of life?’ ” Unlike the angels, I think the sage was saying, we are not purely spiritual creatures, but have an inescapably physical side as well. I thought of this exchange between student and sage the other day when my wife, who teaches third grade, brought me a research topic from her class worksheet on trees. “Very few trees have smooth bark,” I read. “Find out why most bark is rough and has scales or cracks.” But perhaps the real question that should be asked is why bark, whether rough or smooth, is a necessity of arboreal life in the first place?

californiapark161221San Jose, California, Mercury News, December 20, 2016: Park was inspected before wedding-party tree collapse that killed California woman

Whittier city employees surveyed Penn Park for leaning trees and broken branches, but found no safety issues, hours before a massive eucalyptus tree toppled onto a wedding party, killing a 61-year-old grandmother from San Pedro and injuring seven others. “We have been a Tree City USA for more than 30 years, and take care to manage our urban forest,” Whittier City Manager Jeff Collier said Monday following a press conference at the park. “It’s very rare that this would happen.” Witnesses reported the group was taking pictures beneath the 80- to 90-foot-tall tree at the park on Penn Street, around 4:30 p.m. Saturday when it suddenly uprooted and fell, trapping about 20 people. On Monday, arborists were inspecting the tree to determine what caused it to fall. Collier said they were checking for disease or rot, soil stability and the health of the roots. The tree was more than 50 years old and was last pruned two years ago, said Collier, who called the incident a “freakish situation…”

Seattle, Washington, Times, December 20, 2016: Family sues California city after falling tree crushes teen

At least four people in California have been killed when decaying trees have snapped over the past 16 months, including an Oakland teen whose family is suing the city over his death last December while he was climbing a tree. The lawsuit filed Monday by the parents of 16-year-old Jack Lewis alleges that the tree was marked for removal because it was dead or dying, but city officials failed to remove it until after the boy’s death. The boy’s father, Michael Lewis, said it’s “terribly difficult” to get through Christmas without their son. The family’s attorney, John Winer, said shortly after the incident that Oakland city officials told the Lewis family that the tree could have been cut earlier, but arborists have many trees to monitor…

montrealtree161221NPR, December 20, 2016: Montreal’s tall, scrawny Christmas tree evoking Charlie Brown comparisons

Montreal wanted a nice Christmas tree. A nice, tall Christmas tree. Something people would be proud to compare to the behemoth at Rockefeller Center in New York City. What they got is more than 85 feet tall, so it’s got that going for it, which is nice. But otherwise … well, it’s been described as “skinny and lopsided.” As “a pretty sad excuse for a Christmas tree.” As “scraggly,” “battered” and “dishevelled-looking.” As “not beautiful.” As — let’s not beat around the bush here — ugly. It’s even been voted the ugliest Christmas tree in Canada…

Springfield, Missouri, KYTV, December 20, 2016: Cut and run: Tree trim service leaves Springfield homeowners with brush piles

They walked away with thousands of dollars and the job still isn’t done. For decades… Riki Lipe has lived in a central Springfield home. Her late husband planted trees in their yard. “Since my husband died in July, I have been doing everything so right and keeping ahead of all the problems that could happen. I’ve been a bodacious old broad. Now I feel like a stupid old lady … a stupid old lady,” she said. She … along with her neighbors wanted honest work for honest pay. Instead, she’s left with brush piles. She was approached by Show-Me Tree Service. Riki says the man had a branch. “Supposedly that was from my tree. Which I know it wasn’t. He was showing me where there’s problems and this was going to go through my tree and get into my house … the termites,” she said…

latreefall161220Los Angeles, California, Times, December 19, 2016: Expert: Doubtful that drought felled eucalyptus tree at Whittier wedding party

Whittier city officials have tapped a third-party arborist to inspect the trees in Penn Park, where an 80-foot eucalyptus toppled onto a wedding party Saturday afternoon, killing the mother of the bride. The victim was identified as Margarita Mojarro, 61, of San Pedro, a coroner official said. The family identified her as the mother of the bride, according to According to state data and Los Angeles-based expert Ruben Green, who runs Evergreen Arborists Consultants, eucalyptus trees are the third-most common failing tree in California, though there are still relatively few incidents compared with the millions of trees across the state. Failing trees aren’t usual considering the countless trees in California’s cities, parks and forests. That said, there have been 5,902 tree or tree branch “fails” since 2010 in California, according to the University of California’s Tree Failure Report Program…

Mobile, Alabama, WKRG-TV, December 19, 2016: Mayor responds to Donald Trump rally tree controversy

While President-Elect Donald Trump took the stage in Mobile, for some, the large Christmas tree behind him stole the spotlight. A 50 ft. tall cedar chopped down from Public Safety Memorial Park at the request of the Mayor’s Chief of Staff Colby Cooper. “In preparing for this event, I worked closely with the advance team. In an effort to make sure every detail was covered and the expectations of the President-Elect’s team were exceeded, I became overzealous,” Cooper said in a statement. “I now know there are citizens who are upset and offended that a tree from a City park was used as part of the decorations for the event. I accept full responsibility for having this done…”

macarthur161220San Francisco, California, Chronicle, December 19, 2016: Gigantic tree blocks all lanes near MacArthur Tunnel

A gigantic tree fell near the Gen. Douglas MacArthur Tunnel in San Francisco’s Presidio Monday, temporarily blocking all lanes of Veterans Boulevard during the afternoon commute, officials said. Traffic came to a halt during the afternoon commute while crews brushed away branches and attempted moved the fallen tree, officials said. The tree blocked northbound and southbound lanes Veterans Boulevard in that area, according to the California Highway Patrol…

Eugene, Oregon, Register-Guard, December 19, 2016: Storm’s damage to fruit trees and hazelnuts doesn’t seem as bad as 2014 deep freeze, growers say

Unlike the upwards of 20,000 EWEB customers who lost power since Wednesday, several local growers of orchard fruits and hazelnuts are assessing the ice storm’s impact and figure the damage isn’t as bad as the ­February 2014 freeze. “This doesn’t appear to be as bad as a few years ago,” said Dwayne Bush, a third-generation hazelnut grower. He has a total of 430 acres of hazelnut trees at three farms: one on ­Territorial Road in Junction City, one on River Road in ­Eugene and one near Coburg. The freezing-rain storm was very localized, the worst of it ­apparently hitting much of south, east and west Eugene, and the River Road area. Many other areas of the south Willamette Valley in Lane County, for example Cottage Grove or the McKenzie River areas, escaped largely unscathed from the freezing rain. Even though the damage to orchards seems less severe than in 2014, some trees have broken limbs and a few trees are split in half, Bush said…

weddingtree161219Los Angeles, California, Times, December 17, 2016: One dead, five injured after tree falls on wedding party at Whittier park

A large eucalyptus tree fell on a wedding party at a Whittier park Saturday, killing one woman and injuring five other people, authorities said. More than 100 firefighters responded to an emergency call about 5 p.m. at Penn Park, said Inspector Joey Marron of the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Whittier police also rushed to the scene. Several of the injured were transported to hospitals, Marron said. Among them was a 4-year-old girl in critical condition due to head trauma. Witnesses told KTLA Channel 5 and ABC7 that they saw people from the wedding party taking photos when the tree suddenly toppled. One person said the tree broke in half, landing on a number of the victims. The tree “was very old,” Marron said, adding that officials have asked an arborist to help determine what caused it to fall…

Macon, Georgia, WMAZ-TV, December 17, 2016: Bradford pear – the next worst thing since kudzu

There are two times a year when the public can really see the full extent of the Callery pear infestation of our fallow fields. And, make no mistake about this. Today’s fallow fields are tomorrow’s forests. The times when this infestation is most obvious is in the spring when these pears can be seen blooming by the millions, and in the fall when Callery pears show their red color on waxy leaves that don’t decompose. The picture of this fallow field located between two subdivisions sadly misplanted with Bradford pears illustrates this point. The wild pears depicted here are the progeny of Bradford pears. They are Callery pears, a reversion to the ancient pear trees found wild in the mountains of China. In 1918, in an effort to crossbreed wild Callery pears with fruit producing Bartlett pears, seeds were gathered by scientists from the USDA. It was hoped that cross breeding would lessen the problem desirable fruiting pears were having with the dreaded disease of fire blight…

icestorm161219Eugene, Oregon, Register-Guard, December 17, 2016: Local tree service companies overwhelmed with work from ice storm

Lane Tree Doctor, a Eugene tree service, has been making house calls in this ice storm, removing fallen trees from roofs and limbs blocking driveways. “I’m a stay-at-home mom, and I’ve become a secretary,” Julie Grecian said on Friday, in between taking phone calls from customers. “It just hasn’t stopped,” she said. “I just answer calls all day long, constantly entering addresses and phone numbers. “We’re prioritizing by emergency first and the elderly first,” she said. “My husband said this is the worst (ice storm) he’s ever seen,” Grecian added…

Forbes, December 18, 2016: Rockin’ around the tree – geological applications of tree ring research

Archaeologists, climatologists, historians and geologists can learn a lot about the past studying trees. Already Italian artist and naturalist Leonardo da Vinci (1542-1519) noted that rings in a tree cut down near the city of Ravenna reflected the climate around the Italian town. A wet year caused the tree to grow well and form a broad ring. During a dry year the tree grows less forming only a thin ring. Swedish naturalist Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778) showed that temperature also can control tree growth and so thickness of single tree rings. The mathematician and astronomer Andrew Ellicott Douglass (1867-1962) was wondering in 1904 if climate is controlled by solar activity. Unfortunately at the time no climate record was long and precise enough to answer his question, as solar cycles occur slowly, over centuries or even thousands of years. But Douglass recognized the potential of trees as archives of past climate change. As every tree ring represents one year and the thickness reflects the climate in that specific year, Douglass was able to reconstruct the climate in great detail over a long time interval by measuring thousands of rings. Some trees, like the American bristlecone pine, can live for more than 4,600 years and many common European species, like pine, fir and oak, in rare case can live for 1,000 years…

diseasetree161216Riverside, California, Press-Enterprise, December 15, 2016: Can these tree ‘shots’ save urban park trees from deadly beetles and disease?

UC Riverside’s Akif Eskalen pointed to a pattern of small holes in the bark of a majestic California sycamore tree growing in a Riverside park and lamented that it will be dead in about two years. The holes are the work of invaders from Southeast Asia, beetles smaller than a sesame seed that probably hitched a ride to the Golden State in packing wood. First discovered but misidentified in 2003 in Los Angels County, the beetles have since infested at least 49 species of trees in seven Southern California counties, said Eskalen, a plant pathology professor. They also have infested avocado groves, where they don’t kill the trees but cause branches to die back…

Columbia, South Carolina, The State, December 15, 2016: A fire sparked under the dry Christmas tree. A minute later, flames licked the ceiling


It took mere minutes for a Christmas tree, decked with ornaments and colored lights in a makeshift living room, to become engulfed in flames outside the No. 3 Myrtle Beach Fire Station Thursday. “Today we’re doing our Christmas tree burn to kind of show people how dangerous dry Christmas trees can be,” said Lt. Jonathan Evans, a public education officer with the Myrtle Beach Fire Department. He said they wanted to show “how quickly a room can get consumed by fire” and the demonstration proved it. The flames danced up the branches and trunk of the dry Christmas tree then lapped at the ceiling of the steel cargo container converted to a burn building for training at the station as journalists in full turnout gear watched on bended knee…

treetruck161216Garden Rant, December 15, 2016: A plea for trees

A friend of mine, pissed off with the continuing loss of Louisville’s trees, emailed me yesterday, after reading the front page of Louisville’s Courier-Journal. She stripped off the bark. “You know what I say to myself every time I step outdoors? I sure wish they would mow down a bunch more trees so that more motherfucking planes could fly over.” Some people in Louisville are annoyed or even unnerved by air traffic, but it’s part of the deal. Louisville is not Atlanta or Chicago, but there are a lot of United Parcel Service (UPS) transport planes coming and going, rumbling over Louisville, headed to or taking off from the huge UPS worldwide distribution Center adjacent to the Louisville International Airport. Surrounding the airport is a tree-less and blistering hot landscape with hundreds of warehouses supporting businesses that rely on easy access to UPS. And then there is the smaller historic Bowman Field, a barren 426 acres surrounded by the beautiful Olmsted firm-designed Seneca Park and adjacent neighborhoods with mature trees…

The Economist, December 15, 2016: In California’s forests, removing small trees leaves water for bigger ones and for dwindling reservoirs

In the early 1900s, an average forested acre in California supported fewer than 50 or so trees. After a century of efforts to fight wildfires, the average has risen to more than 300 (albeit mostly smaller) trees. Some might reckon such growth wonderful, but it is a problem far more serious than, say, the fact that horses can no longer trot through areas where they once could. The extra fuel turns today’s wildfires into infernos hot enough to devastate the landscape, torching even the big older trees that typically survived fires in the old days. Beyond this, the extra trees are worsening California’s driest ever drought. “Like too many straws in a drink,” trees suck up groundwater before it can seep into streams that feed reservoirs, says David Edelson of The Nature Conservancy. The project director for the Sierra Nevada range, source of 60% of California’s consumed water, notes that as a warmer climate lengthens the growing season, trees’ thirst will only increase. This has led to a push for large numbers of trees to be cut or burned down. Overgrown forests catch more snow and rain on leaves and needles, where wind and sunlight increase the amount of moisture lost to evaporation…

vandals161215Anaheim, California, Orange County Register, December 14, 2016: Laguna Beach mayor offers $5,000 reward for arrest of vandals who cut Montage Resort trees

While police are asking for help in their investigation into the vandalism that left five eucalyptus trees with deep gashes at the base of their trunks at the Montage Resort, the mayor is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest. The 40- 45-year-old trees, at South Coast Highway and Montage Resort Drive, are valued at $100,000 each, police Chief Laura Farinella said. An arborist is monitoring the trees to see if they can survive the 2-inch-deep cuts. “The cuts to the trees were deep so it must have taken someone a good amount of time,” Farinella told the City Council on Tuesday. “If they used a motorized saw, it would have made noise. If someone witnessed it, they could have dismissed it as gardeners working…”

Yahoo Finance, December 14, 2016: Tree nut and dried fruit productions to increase by over 4% in 2016-17 season

World tree nut production forecast for 2016/17 is expected to reach 4.02 million MT, representing a 5.77% crop growth. These data refer to figures on a kernel basis, except for pistachios, which are in-shell basis. Pistachios appear to be the crop which will experience the biggest increment this season, by 34%, up to 703,700 MT. World peanut production has been forecast at 41.26 million MT, up 1.83% from the 2015/16 season (in-shell basis). World production excluding crushing for oil is expected to account for approximately 24 million MT. The estimated world production of dried fruit in 2015/16 reached more than 2.7 million MT. A 4.41% production growth has been forecasted for the 2016/17 season, up to 2.9 MT. In relative terms, dried apricots and sweetened dried cranberries are expected to register the greatest growth (12% each). The top three producers of tree nuts and dried fruits are the US, Turkey and China. As California, the world’s leading almond producer, faced fourth consecutive years of historic drought, superior economics of almonds attracted new plantings…

nzrights161215Wellington, New Zealand, Stuff, December 14, 2016: What are your rights when it comes to the neighbor’s trees?

They help protect our privacy, provide homes for our feathered friends, and they’re perfect possies for kids’ huts. Many of us don’t give trees much thought until they’re someone else’s – and impacting on your property. Roots dislodging your foundations. Leaves blocking your gutters. Your million-dollar view turning into a leafy hundred-dollar view, lowering the value of your home while raising the blood pressure. Trees can cause neighbours considerable distress, particularly when they belong to the friendly folk over the fence, so what are your rights when it comes to the neighbour’s trees? To address any kind of tree-related tension, talk to your neighbours first. As frustrating as their trees might be, they may have no idea that they’re even an issue. So give them an opportunity to fix the problem themselves. It’s your right as a landowner to enjoy your property. However, your neighbours have this right too. Therefore, no property owner is allowed to take matters into their own hands unless the tree is on their property…

Weather Channel, December 14, 2016: Christmas Tree industry hard hit by East Coast drought

The historic drought continuing in parts of the East Coast has damaged the Christmas tree industry, but you shouldn’t have a problem getting an evergreen this season. While the trees this year may be a little shorter due to the dearth of rain, it’s the Christmases a couple years down the road that could see an evergreen deficit. “After the first shearing we only got 2-3 inches of growth instead of a foot, so we couldn’t capture that foot, so every tree out here is 8-12 inches shorter,” George Brown, owner of Valley Christmas Tree Plantation in Alabama told WHNT-TV. It’s not just the southeast that has been hard hit by drought. While the wildfires raging in the southern Appalachians has gotten most of the media attention, parts of New England have been parched as well. Over half of the counties in Massachusetts are in the midst of an “extreme drought,” according to the U.S. Drought Monitor Index. The situation is so dire in the Bay State that some tree farms are actually closed for business this holiday season because they did not get enough precipitation, reports the Huffington Post. Christmas trees, typically spruce, pine and firs, are most vulnerable during their first couple of years in the ground. Unlike older, more mature trees, their root systems are not well established and wither quickly when rains fail. Older trees, around 8-10 years of age – the ones sold as Christmas trees – are able to withstand drought better. Most of these have withstood the epic drought…

realfake161214Metro, December 13, 2016: Real or fake? Christmas tree debate heats up

“The smell.” That’s the main difference between real and artificial Christmas trees, according to Floyd Singletary, who sells Christmas trees during the holidays out of his auto shop at 27th and Poplar streets. “People walking by here always say, ‘I love the smell,'” Singletary said as he showed off his stock of Fraser Firs from North Carolina and Grand Firs from California. “They say an artificial tree will last 10 years. But people say it’s just not the same. I hear that a lot.” Nonetheless, artificial Christmas tree retailers say getting a fake tree has a wide range of benefits, and that the vast majority of Americans now get fake trees. “Artificial Christmas trees are an investment. A high quality Christmas tree can easily last for more than 20 years. This means that spending a few extra dollars can end up saving you money,” claims the American Christmas Tree Association (ACTA), a nonprofit that says it is dedicated to helping families choose the right Christmas tree. According to a 2016 survey conducted by ACTA, out of 100 million households in the U.S. with Christmas trees, 81 percent are getting artificial trees, and only 19 percent are getting real trees. But advocates for the authentic Christmas tree industry say ACTA’s is using fake stats to push artificial trees…

Sunbury, Pennsylvania, Daily Item, December 13, 2016: Police on the hunt for real life Grinch after reports of stolen Christmas trees

Troopers from the Stonington State Police Barracks are searching for a Grinch after two reports of stolen Christmas trees in the last two weeks. Trooper Jason Drumheller and Trooper Raymond Snarski III reported that the holiday conifers were taken from Campbell’s Christmas Trees on Route 61 between 8 p.m. Nov. 11 and 8:30 a.m. Nov. 30 and five were stolen from Snyder’s By the Creek on Market Street outside Sunbury between Dec. 6 and Dec. 7. The number of trees taken from Campbell’s was not specified in the police report…

soundtree161213San Francisco, California, Chronicle, December 13, 2016: Nature’s remedy for blocking noise? Trees

Landscape designers in cities are creating quieter living spaces by using trees to mute loud noises like sirens and air brakes. It’s called “soundscaping,” and it aims to restore peaceful, natural sounds like wind whispering through leaves, birds chirping or rain dripping from branches. “Massive walls are often installed to quiet freeway noise in major cities, but there are more aesthetic ways to handle it,” said Tim Moloney, who teaches landscape design at the University of Missouri. “Use vegetation for minimizing the background clatter.”The denser a tree’s lower branches, the better it masks or deflects bothersome noise, Moloney said.Evergreens are the preferred vegetative sound barriers because they are densely branched and are attractive year-round. Ideally, shrubs would be a major component of any green muting mix. “The thing with shrubs is you don’t have the height of a tree but they grow more quickly,” Moloney said. “Along with density, choose vegetation having desirable landscape qualities — fruit, flowers, canopy shapes, fragrance and fall colors. And for best results, plant them on an earthen berm…”

Dallas, Texas, KXAS-TV, December 13, 2016: Keeping Christmas Trees Fresh Longer

Real Christmas trees seem to be rebounding in popularity in North Texas. “We’ve had so many people come up and say, ‘We’ve had an artificial tree for 10 years and we just decided we want a real tree,’” Flower Mound Christmas Trees owner Jan Balekain said. The challenge for those families is finding ways to keep their Christmas trees healthy and hydrated. “The key to anything, keeping it alive is just water,” Balekain said. The internet is filled with ideas and home remedies promising to prolong the tree. From putting a penny in the water to adding vodka, there are no lack of ideas. “Aspirin, sugar, syrup anything like that. The problem with adding anything other than water or something with a preservative in it is that it actually covers the bottom of the tree,” Balekain warned. Where trees are placed in the home and what is put on them could also cause the tree to die faster…

treestats161213Forbes, December 12, 2016: Pine Versus Plastic: The Numbers Behind U.S. Christmas Tree Sales

For many American families, the ritual of going out to buy the perfect Christmas tree is an essential part of the holiday season. Even though the experience of purchasing a large tree and stuffing it into the trunk of a station wagon may prove stressful, some people feel that Christmas wouldn’t be the same without it. Once that glorious smell wafts through the house from that beautifully adorned tree, surely everyone would agree that the real deal is worth the effort? … Even though real trees consistently outsell fake ones every year, many consumers consider the latter a more long-term investment. Last year, 25.9 million real trees were sold in the U.S. compared to 12.5 million fakes, according to the National Christmas Tree Association. Sales of both variations reached their peak in 2013 when 33 million real trees were sold, along with 14.7 million fakes…

Phoenix, Arizona, Desert Sun, December 12, 2016: Christmas tree shortage means higher prices this year

Getting into the holiday spirit could come with a side of sticker shock for valley residents looking to purchase a real Christmas tree. Tree prices have risen steadily over the past decade, and a shortage of Christmas trees has exacerbated the problem. According to a survey by the USDA, fewer trees are being planted in major Christmas tree-producing states like Oregon, yielding a small harvest for sale come December…

Flixxy.com, December 12, 2016: Skilled helicopter pilot hauling Christmas Trees

A fascinating video of a skilled Oregon helicopter pilot hauling Christmas trees with incredible precision (click on link above) …

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Portland, Oregon, The Oregonian, December 12, 2016: 5 worthy trees for small gardens

As cities get bigger, gardens get smaller and large trees no longer make the cut. No worries. The plant world teems with appropriately sized trees. The best place to start a search is in your own backyard. As the saying goes: “Right plant, right place.” Decide where you want a tree first and then find one that fits the site, said Chris Rusch, president of the Douglas County chapter of the Oregon State University Extension Service Master Gardener program. “You can’t just go buy a tree and then find a spot for it,” she said. “You have to get a tree that’s suitable for the site.” Take into account the amount of sun the space gets, the type of soil and whether it’s under power lines or close to a fence, patio, foundation or structure. Then do some research online, check books or ask someone at a reputable garden center to narrow down a few options that fit the criteria. And don’t forget to think about the characteristics you want. Perhaps fall color is No. 1 on your list. Or, a full-fledged display of spring flowers. Colorful, interesting bark or shapely form offer another season of enjoyment. Want it all? There are trees that fit the bill…

greenwich161212Greenwich, Connecticut, Time, December 11, 2016: Next New Lebanon project concern: trees

The newest roadblock to building a new New Lebanon School might very well be trees. After planners were told that as many as 250 trees could be cut down during construction, the Greenwich Tree Conservancy requested a hearing to allow for public comment. The hearing, held last week, included a tour of the property by Bruce Spaman, the Greenwich tree warden. His report, expected Monday, should map out which trees should be cut, which saved and how developers will replace whatever greenery is needed. “I’m not going to shut down a school, but I do want to work to get the best deal for the townspeople,” Spaman, said. “There are some big trees in there…

Farms.com, December 13, 2016: Finding The Perfect Christmas Tree

Finding the perfect Christmas tree doesn’t have to be difficult. Christmastime, and the holiday season in general, can be a stressful time for many people. There are so many holiday parties to attend, presents to buy, meals to make and decorations to set out. Out of all the decorations this holiday season, finding the perfect Christmas tree for your home should not be as stressful as some make it out to be. Norman Haley of the Alabama Cooperative Extension System has some great advice for finding the perfect tree. “I know for me and my family, we buy a precut tree every year. Yet, there are many families that cut down their own trees. Common Christmas species grown in the south and are available at ‘cut your own’ farms are: Leyland cypress, Virginia pine, Arizona cypress, eastern red cedar and white pine. The trees often found at ‘precut’ vendors include: Fraser Fur, Douglas Fur and Blue spruce. Haley said the best time to get your tree depends on if you want to buy a precut tree, or cut down your own. If you cut your own tree, Haley said to plan ahead on when to cut it. “Expect most trees to last a maximum of 3 weeks after cutting. After that, the needles begin to shed and the fragrance is gone…

scald161212Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Gazette, December 11, 2016: Prevent sunscald on susceptible trees this winter

Winter weather has arrived and young trees need a little TLC to avoid a common malady called sunscald. Sunscald is a common problem found in young thin barked trees, such as maples, beech, dogwood, honey locust and fruit trees. But what causes sunscald? What does sunscald look like? There are a couple schools of thought as to what causes sunscald. Dehydration may be a factor due to the direct sun or reflected sunlight from snow exposure, which could cause the bark tissue to die. Another theory suggests that when bark heats during the day, the tissues break dormancy, and the freezing temperatures at night kill the tissue, which creates an area of dead bark. Damage occurs in late winter or early spring. The bark may show as an elongated canker (areas of dead bark) that appears sunken or discolored, followed by cracking and peeling of the bark. You’ll find the damage on the south or southwest side of a tree…

New Orleans, Louisiana, Times-Picayune, December 11, 2016: Do cypress needles make good mulch? Can I cut my cypress tree’s knees?

QUESTION: We have a cypress tree, and, as we were raking up our lawn, we were wondering if the needles from the tree would be good mulch. We know oak leaves are good mulch, but are maple leaves also suitable? Also, is there anything you can suggest regarding the cypress knees that keep popping up all over the lawn? We’ve considered cutting the tree down, but I would like to keep it as it is very pretty. Is there any way we can trim or saw the knees?

ANSWER: Virtually all leaves are excellent for mulching or composting, including the cypress, oak and maple that you mention. Feel free to put the cypress needles in beds of shrubs, flowers or vegetables. As to the problem with knees, most cypress trees planted in well-drained landscapes do not produce knees. But once a tree starts, there is no way to make it stop. Fortunately, you can safely remove the knees without hurting the tree. Simply dig down around a knee a few inches deep, and cut the knee off horizontally below the soil surface…

fire161209Fox News, December 8, 2016: Remote towns in fear of flames for lack of help from California and the feds

It was Sept. 11, 2015, when 31-year-old Tony Gonzalez, while sitting in a feeding class at a “goat academy” three hours from his Middletown-area ranch in Northern California, got the feeling that something was very wrong. His wife, Jenna, had just texted him a photograph of a small fire some distance from the ranch. At home a couple of hours later, he checked Facebook and saw images on friends’ pages of hundreds of acres of land burning and embers flying, sparking new fires that hatched even more embers and uncanny winds propelling the flames towards his home…

Crawfordsville, Indiana, Journal Review, December 8, 2016: Expert offers tips for live tree care

Shoppers are out in droves preparing for Christmas, and one large item on the list is a live Christmas tree. Evergreen Nursery and Landscape manager Jim Frees said after a tree is selected, the buyer needs to take proper care of it so it stays fresh during the holiday season. “The first thing I would advise people is to ask the vendor where and when the tree was harvested,” Frees said. “Freshness is the key and if the tree was recently cut and shipped, then there is a better chance that the tree will last as long as it needs to.” Knowing where the tree came from is sometimes difficult to learn at a retail store. However, small business owners will know the answer since they are the ones who placed and received the greenery order…

potter161209Huffington Post, December 8, 2016: This famous Harry Potter tree is getting surgery

We can’t leaf this tree alone! A historic tree featured in the fifth “Harry Potter” film, “Harry Potter and the Order of The Phoenix,” is in danger of toppling over. The aged cedar of Lebanon tree, located in the grounds of Blenheim Palace, is 55 feet tall and has a massive hole in the trunk. The hole makes it so that the tree could tip over at any moment. But a rescue plan is in the works. Tree surgeons ― yes, this is a thing ― are using “climbers and a cherry picker to fix cables to its larger upper branches and attach them to nearby trees” to reduce the chances of collapse…

Tallahassee, Florida, December 8, 2016: Watch for signs of citrus greening on your trees

By now, most Floridians have heard about citrus greening, but many may not totally understand what it actually is and what it means for Florida’s iconic citrus industry. Since many local residents are enjoying their citrus trees these days, I thought I should share the latest update on this disease and what citrus growers in north Florida can do to monitor for its presence. First of all, citrus greening is a bacterial disease, believed to be caused by the bacterium Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus. Citrus greening goes by the official name Huanglongbing, or HLB, since it was first reported in southern China in 1919 (Huanglongbing translates to “yellow dragon disease”). Until 1956, when a Chinese researcher concluded it was an infectious disease, many folks thought it was associated with nutrient deficiencies or other citrus diseases. In 2005, it was discovered in south Florida and is now present in most commercial groves throughout central and south Florida. The bacterium is spread from tree to tree by a small insect, known as the Asian citrus psyllid (Diaphorina citri). The adult psyllids are about an eighth inch long and feed on the leaves with their backsides sticking up at a 30-degree angle. They spread the disease by feeding on an infected tree and moving on to a non-infected tree…

treecost161208Los Angeles, California, Times, December 7, 2016: Why your Christmas tree may cost more this year

Christmas tree shortage could have many Southern California shoppers feeling the holiday blues. Some local sellers have increased prices 10% or more on certain varieties, especially the popular Noble fir, because they have become scarce. Some buyers have returned to their usual holiday tree lots this year only to find that the sellers weren’t there. Industry experts say an oversupply of Christmas trees nearly a decade ago brought low returns, prompting many growers to stop planting trees in favor of other crops, such as hazelnuts. That has led to a shortage this year among Southern California sellers, who get trees primarily from Oregon, Washington and North Carolina…

London, UK, iNews, December 7, 2016: Christmas tree thieves make priceless error

Thieves have ripped out a rare collection of spruces at a Scottish conservation project to cash in on the Christmas tree market. It is thought the plants, native to the forests of Serbia and neighbouring Bosnia, were taken to be sold on as Christmas trees. But staff at the Perth and Kinross Countryside Trust (PKCT) say the coniferous trees have no commercial value although their genetic material is irreplaceable. Endangered spruce trees taken from collection Listed as an endangered species by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, the five Serbian Spruces were planted as part of the Kinnoull Hill Woodland Park’s Big Tree Conifer Conservation Programme. Tom Christian, PKCT project officer, said:”Until these trees were stolen, we probably had the greatest concentration of these trees outside of their native range.” Tom Christian, PKCT project officer, told STV: “The climate and landscape of Perthshire are ideal for growing conifers and the area provides a very important safe haven for rare and endangered species from around the world…

drought161208Live Science, December 7, 2016: California’s Long Drought Has Killed 100 Million Trees

The lingering drought in California has killed more than 100 million trees, according to the U.S. Forest Service’s latest aerial survey. The recent death count found that 62 million trees have died just this year in California, bringing the six-year total to more than 102 million. More than five years of drought are to blame for the tree deaths, scientists said, adding that tree “fatalities” increased by 100 percent in 2016. While die-off is expected under drought conditions, the rate of the forests’ death is faster than scientists expected, according to U.S. Forest Service (USFS) officials. The agency said that millions of additional trees are expected to die in the coming months and years. California’s drought has affected 7.7 million acres of forests, putting the region’s whole ecology at risk, the scientists said…

PJ Media, December 7, 2016: Now Even TREES Are Blamed For Pollution

That’s right, according to a British health watchdog, trees can actually increase pollution in a city, worsening the air people breath. According to Britain’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (with the Orwellian acronym NICE, as in C.S. Lewis’ That Hideous Strength), streets with leafy trees could actually contribute to pollution, rather than decreasing it. “Street trees were unlikely to reduce air pollution in most street designs and could worsen it in some cases,” NICE reported in a 60-page document issued last week. “Leaves and branches slow air currents, causing pollutants to settle out,” rather than dispersing into the general atmosphere. These findings are not unique to Britain, however. In 2012, Belgian researchers modeled a variety of real-life roadside urban vegetation to see whether the addition of greenery improved air quality. Their study concluded that trees on city streets could reduce ventilation, increasing dangerous pollution…

realorfake161207Cranford, New Jersey, Patch, December 6, 2016: Real or fake: Which tree poses a greater danger?

One of the great debates of the holiday season has always been whether to invest in a fake tree or annually purchase a real tree. Let’s take a look at the safety concerns surrounding both types of trees:
The North Carolina Consumers Council, an entity that focuses on consumer awareness and support, states that real trees tend to pose the highest number of hazards to homeowners. This includes not only fires, but also pests and messes. However, the council noted that proper care for real trees, such as only purchasing those that are still alive and fresh cut, as well as keeping them adequately watered, can reduce the risk of fires.
ZME Science, a website devoted to science, argued that artificial trees have actually been found to be more hazardous to the environment both because of the pollution they create, as well as the chemicals they contain. These trees do not pose as many risks to homeowners as real ones, and are far less likely to go up in flames, but can be hazardous when manufactured in dangerous fashions. When purchasing a fake tree, read the label to ensure it will not be dangerous for kids and pets to be around…

Yahoo.com, December 6, 2016: Real Christmas trees might soon be a tradition of the past

To many, the holidays wouldn’t be the same without going out to the farm and cutting down a Christmas tree, then standing it up in your home and getting whiffs of pine for weeks to come. But since dry weather and droughts have ravaged the country this past year, it might cost way more than usual to buy these trees in upcoming seasons. “This year’s drought will have a long-lasting effect,” a farmer from Alabama named Roger Schwerman told The Huffington Post. “It might drive many farms out of the tree business.” But why? Well, the biggest problem is seedlings and young trees can’t survive in dry conditions. In fact, Massachusetts saw a 100% failure rate for growing tree seedings this year and other states saw similar numbers…

adirondacks161207Albany, New York, AP, December 6, 2016: Lawyer: NY’s proposed snowmobile trails would cut down 31,000 trees

New snowmobile trails being carved through the Adirondacks violate the “forever wild” clause of the state’s constitution because tens of thousands of trees are being cut and the forest’s character is being altered, an environmental group argued before a trial level state Supreme Court judge on Monday. In a case that could clarify how much tree-cutting and land disturbance is acceptable when the Department of Environmental Conservation builds trails in the state-owned Forest Preserve, Protect the Adirondacks lawyer John Caffry said the 9-to-12-foot-wide “community connector” trails are more like roads than typical snowmobile trails and will destroy more than 31,000 trees. Under the State Land Master Plan law, snowmobile trails are supposed to be similar to foot trails. Assistant Attorney General Loretta Simon, representing the state agency, said the number of trees cut is far less because the agency counts only trees at least 3 inches in diameter. Simon also said the snowmobile trails are only a foot wider than new hiking trails…

Quartz.com, December 6, 2016: Trees could make urban pollution even worse

Contrary to common belief, city trees may actually worsen the air we breathe, a UK-based health watchdog warns. According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), air quality on leafy avenues can actually worsen at street level, where vehicle sources emit pollutants and ventilation is restricted due to the overhead canopy. “Street trees were unlikely to reduce air pollution in most street designs and could worsen it in some cases,” said NICE in the 60-page draft issued on Dec. 1. “Leaves and branches slow air currents, causing pollutants to settle out.” A 2012 study by Belgian researchers also modeled a variety of real-life examples of roadside urban vegetation to see whether or not they improved air quality or increased pollution concentrations. They also concluded trees on city streets could reduce ventilation. The UK is desperately trying to improve its air quality, which causes an estimated 40,000 premature deaths a year in the country. The country’s high court held the government liable for being complacent about tackling air pollution in November this year: the case revealed that the Treasury blocked plans to charge diesel cars a fee for entering towns and cities plagued by air pollution to avoid irking motorists…

pinecone161206Gardening Know How, December 5, 2016: Slash Pine Tree facts: tips on planting Slash Pine Trees

What is a slash pine tree? This attractive evergreen tree, a type of yellow pine native to the southeastern United States, produces sturdy, strong wood, which makes it valuable for the area’s timber plantations and reforestation projects. Slash pine (Pinus elliottii) is known by a number of alternative names, including swamp pine, Cuban pine, yellow slash pine, southern pine and pitch pine. Read on for more slash pine tree information. Slash Pine Tree Facts Slash pine tree is suitable for growing in USDA plant hardiness zones 8 through 10. It grows at a relatively fast rate, attaining about 14 to 24 inches of growth per year. This is a good-sized tree that reaches heights of 75 to 100 feet at maturity. Slash pine is an attractive tree with a pyramidal, somewhat oval shape. The shiny, deep green needles, which are arranged in bunches that look a little like brooms, can reach lengths of up to 11 inches. The seeds, hidden in glossy brown cones, provide sustenance for a variety of wildlife, including wild turkeys and squirrels…

Springfield, Massachusetts, Republican, December 5, 2016: UMass students accused of stealing Christmas tree from Boy Scout sale

Two 21-year-old women will be back in court next month after allegedly stealing a Christmas tree early Friday morning from the Boy Scouts of America tree stand at Kendrick Park. Officers observed three women stealing a tree just after 1 a.m. Friday, according to police.Arrested were Lindsay I. Zappolo of Scituate and Miranda Murphy of North Attleboro. The third woman fled, police said. Zappolo and Murphy were charged with larceny under $250. Both pleaded not guilty Friday in Eastern Hampshire District Court in Belchertown. They are listed as University of Massachusetts students…

fallleaves161206Bridgewater, New Jersey, Courier-News, December 5, 2016: The story of trees, and why some drop their leavesDid you ever wonder why some trees and shrubs stay green all year? Or, conversely, why other trees shed their leaves before winter?

You might think deciduous trees lose their leaves because they’re trying to avoid freezing weather. But they’re actually coping with the drought conditions of winter. According to Dr. Emile DeVito, New Jersey Conservation Foundation’s staff biologist, the best clue comes from tropical forests with extended dry seasons. When the rainy season ends, soil moisture drops to near zero. Broad leaves typically evaporate lots of water, so even in the warm tropics deciduous trees shed their leaves to prevent tissue death due to drying out. New Jersey’s deciduous forests do the same thing: becoming leafless during winter for self-protection. Even during wet winters in New Jersey, water becomes nearly unavailable to tree roots when the soil freezes. Our deciduous oak, maple and birch trees shed their leaves each fall to prepare for drought…

Australian Broadcasting Corporation, December 5, 2016: Christmas tree farmer braces for the silly season and offers tips to make your tree last

“I’m giving them a nip and tuck.” That is how Ron Junghans described his pruning technique on this year’s Christmas tree harvest. Surrounded by some 4,000 trees on his farm at Duffy’s Forest in Terry Hills, there is no masking the pine-fresh scent of the festive season. Mr Junghans, a retired school teacher, planted his first pine radiata in 1979. The trees that will decorate people’s homes this year range from one to three metres with the smallest having taken just under five years to grow. Each tree grows about one foot (30 centimetres) a year in its early stages then grows at a faster rate as it matures. “They take quite a while to establish themselves,” Mr Junghans said. “I don’t water so they go at a smaller rate, but it makes for a better tree I think — looks a bit more natural…”

treefire161205Albany, New York, WWLP-TV, December 4, 2016: Prevent Christmas tree fires with these tips

Bringing a Christmas tree into your home may be a fun holiday tradition, but can be dangerous if correct precautions aren’t taken. At Paul Bunyan’s Farm and Nursery in Chicopee, everyone who buys a tree goes home with a list of safety tips. A very important tip, they say, is to make sure the tree is watered often. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, Christmas tree fires have become more rare in recent years. The most common cases of Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems and by putting a tree too close to a heat source. State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey is offering holiday decorating tips this year as well: Choose from freshest trees possible – needles shouldn’t fall off or break easily; Take care of your tree – consider cutting off an inch or two off the bottom before placing it in the stand, water a live tree every day; Choose best location – use wide-legged stands to avoid tipping, keep far away from heaters, fireplaces, and candles; and decorate wisely – consider LED lights, but inspect old lights for frayed wires…

Watertown, New York, Daily Times, December 4, 2016: Pierrepont man killed when pinned by tree

A 60-year-old Pierrepont man was killed Friday when he became pinned by a tree while he was in the woods to cut firewood and hunt, according to the St. Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department. Police said a 911 call was received at 5:11 p.m. that Stanley P. Tarbox, 432 Butternut Ridge Road, had not returned home after going into the woods. With the assistance of a Border Patrol K-9 unit, deputies and personnel from other agencies found Mr. Tarbox dead at 7:14 p.m. The investigation revealed Mr. Tarbox had attempted to fell a tree that had become lodged in another tree. “While cutting another tree to free it, the first tree fell on him causing him to be pinned,” police said in a prepared statement…

sign161205Hagerstown, Maryland, Herald-Mail, December 3, 2016: Ringgold business owner’s tree fight may lead to legislation

A tree might inspire a lovely poem, but the state’s plan to plant them in front of a Ringgold Pike business could inspire new legislation in the Maryland General Assembly. William A. “Tad” Tweed approached the Washington County Board of Commissioners earlier this year with concerns about the State Highway Administration’s plan to plant trees along the state’s right of way on Ringgold Pike, or Md. 418. The planting is part of the state’s Chesapeake Bay Restoration Program that treats highway runoff before it gets back into the waterway’s tributaries. The trouble is that the SHA confirmed in September that the section of Ringgold Pike right in front of Tweed’s business, Mace Energy Supply Inc., had been chosen for planting. And that, he told the commissioners Tuesday, means his business will eventually be hidden from the road…

New Orleans, Louisiana, Times-Picayune, December 4, 2016: Why won’t my citrus tree produce fruit?

QUESTION: In Metairie, I have a grapefruit tree that produces wonderful fruit every year. I have grown lots of little trees from the seeds I’ve gotten out of the fruit of that tree. I planted the seedling trees in Covington several years ago, and some of them are at least 10 feet tall. None of them have ever made grapefruits. What is wrong?
ANSWER: We don’t grow citrus trees from seeds for two reasons. As you have discovered, it takes a seedling tree a long time to begin to bloom and produce. You would expect it to take seven to nine years for fruiting to begin, and it may well take more than 10 years. When a grafted tree is purchased at the nursery, we expect it to begin producing within three to five years after planting if not sooner…

bigxmastree61202Reno, Nevada, Gazette-Journal, December 1, 2016: Los Angeles outlet mall defeats Sparks Nugget Casino’s ‘tallest Christmas tree in America’

“Nugget Casino Resort, we humbly accept your congratulations and the kind words have us aglow,” according to a statement from Citadel Outlets. “We love that this festive rivalry helped spread holiday joy far and wide. If you eat your Wheaties, we’ll have quite the competition next season!” While Citadel Outlets claims to be the tallest fresh-cut Christmas tree in the world, it’s possible another one will pop up somewhere else to contend for the title. But for now, it is theirs. Most other “trees” taller than 115 feet are in fact, constructed out of thousands of smaller trees or made of metal and not an actual tree at all. A 278-foot metal Christmas “tree” in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, was awarded the tallest floating Christmas tree in the world as it drifted around Rodrigo de Freitas lagoon in 2007 and continues that tradition each year. Citadel Outlets director of public relations also noted that their tree is adorned with 10,000 ornaments and bows and 18,000 lights, compared to the Nugget’s 3,000 LED lights. Both trees are White Firs but the Nugget’s tree came from Oregon while the Citadel’s tree came from northern California’s Shasta-Trinity National Forest…

Cedar Rapids, Iowa, KCRG-TV, December 1, 2016: Historic oak tree in Waverly coming down Friday

The bur oak located next to the civic center in Waverly actually pre-dates the community. It’s estimated to be at least 217 years old. Last summer, the city decided because the tree was dying and in danger of toppling it had to come down. On Friday, workers will begin cutting down the historic bur oak with the job expected to take two days.
The city plans to close off part of a parking lot and a walkway to accommodate the work…

treeonhouse161201Youngstown, Ohio, WFMJ-TV, December 1, 2016: Tree topples on Youngstown home

It may have been wind, the rain or a combination of both, but a woman living on Youngstown’s West Side felt the effects of the weather on Thursday. A large tree toppled over on Cranbrook Court, damaging the roof and siding of a home. No one was injured. In spite of the high winds, FirstEnergy only reports a handful of power outages in Mahoning and Columbiana Counties…

Hilton Head, South Carolina, The Island Packet, December 2, 2016: No, do not level the trees of Beaufort County

Lowcountry trees need champions more than ever on Arbor Day this Friday. Hurricane Matthew knocked over more trees than we can count when it crossed Beaufort County as a Category 2 storm on Oct. 8. Since then, some people have been saying we had too many trees. They say county, municipal and private regulations to preserve trees need to be whittled down to the size of a No. 2 pencil so our naked fortresses can be unscathed the next time we get hit by a hurricane. These people are wrong. We are not Manhattan. Manhattan still has plenty of housing available for those who want that. But we are trying to be Central Park. Today, more than ever, we must understand our heritage and fight this new assault on it. From the beginning of recorded history, people who have discovered Beaufort County have remarked lovingly on its trees…

treeshot161201San Gabriel Valley, California, Tribune, November 29, 2016: Can these tree ‘shots’ save urban park trees from deadly beetles and disease?

Don Grosman hooks tiny needles into the bark of a 50-foot-tall sycamore tree, injecting the tree with a medicinal cocktail to ward off Fusarium Dieback, a plague killing urban street and park trees. “We equate it to giving someone a shot for the prevention of a disease,” said Grosman, technology advancement manager and entomologist with Arborjet, Inc., a Massachusetts company that patented the combination of pesticide and fungicide that’s directly shot into a tree’s vascular system like a shot is injected into a person’s bloodstream to prevent measles or the flu. Grosman returned Tuesday to the Pomona Fairplex grounds to complete a three-year trial started in January 2014 in cooperation with researchers at UC Riverside. So far, results are promising, he said: Ninety percent of trees that received an injection of a combination of two chemicals, Propizol (propiconazole), a systemic fungicide; and TREE-age (emamectin benzoate), a general use pesticide; showed no signs of the disease…

Accuweather, November 30, 2016: Holiday hacks to keep your real Christmas tree fresh all season

Now that Thanksgiving has passed, families who decorate for Christmas might be thinking about selecting that perfect live tree for their homes. If you are choosing the real thing this year, here are some tips to keep your Christmas tree as healthy as possible this holiday season. Two simple things to keep in mind when you are preparing your tree for the indoors: Ask for a fresh cut on the trunk and make sure the tree gets water right away…

vandal161201Los Angeles, California, Times, November 30, 2016: Vandals damage six eucalyptus trees in Laguna Beach, police say

Laguna Beach police are treating cuts to the trunks of six eucalyptus trees as vandalism. On Saturday, a pedestrian in the Aliso Creek Shopping Center reported that a eucalyptus tree had a 1- to 2-inch-deep cut near its base, Sgt. Tim Kleiser said. Across South Coast Highway at the Montage Laguna Beach, five eucalyptus trees had sustained 1- to 2-inch cuts at the bases of their trunks, police said. A security guard reported the cuts to authorities on Nov. 21. Police said the damaged trees at the Montage, a luxury hotel, were located next to a walkway near the highway…

San Bernardino, California, Sun, November 30, 2016: Can Joshua trees survive global warming? Scientists have differing thoughts

It started with a 2011 study that indicated by the turn of the century there would be no more Joshua trees in the national park named after the iconic desert plant. And likely none in California. “I was shocked when the study came out. I wanted to look at the details and change the scale,” said Cameron Barrows, a research ecologist for the UC Riverside Center for Conservation Biology in Palm Desert. The large scale of the study by Kenneth Cole, a climate scientist for the federal government’s Colorado Plateau Research Station in Flagstaff, Arizona, missed many of the geological nuances of Joshua Tree National Park and elsewhere, according to Barrows, which could ultimately mean survival for the Joshua tree species…

lawsuittree161130San Francisco, California, Chronicle, November 28, 2016: Woman paralyzed by falling tree limb sues SF

A San Francisco woman who was paralyzed when she was hit by a falling tree limb in Washington Square Park filed a lawsuit against the city for negligence on Monday. The Canary Island pine tree off of which a 100-pound branch splintered off and struck Emma Zhou, 36, on Aug. 12 had been “negligently pruned” in a method that “causes the rapid growth of large, heavy, and weakly attached branches that can fall and injure or kill people,” the lawsuit filed in San Francisco Superior Court stated. Zhou had been watching her young daughters play in the park’s playground before a dental appointment when the branch fractured her skull and severed her spinal cord, leaving her paralyzed below the waist. “We haven’t been served with the lawsuit, so we can’t comment on specifics about something we haven’t seen,” said John Cote, a spokesman for the city attorney. “Generally speaking, we evaluate every case we receive and decide on the best way to proceed. What happened to Ms. Zhou is heartbreaking, and our thoughts go out to her and her family…”

London, UK, BBC, November 29, 2016: Oxford tree surgeon’s chainsaw death ‘bad luck’

The death of a tree surgeon who sliced his neck open with a chainsaw was just “bad luck”, an inquest has heard. Alexander Kirkley, 32, was cutting branches from a hoist on an ash tree in Oxford on 12 February when his tool “kicked back” and hit his neck. Oxford Coroner’s Court was told he held his neck before falling unconscious. One of his colleagues tried to stop the bleeding and an ambulance was called but the arborist later died in the John Radcliffe Hospital. The Oxford-born outdoorsman had spent three years living in New Zealand where he perfected his trade. At the jury-led inquest, coroner Darren Salter read evidence from one of Mr Kirkley’s trainers Josh Paice who wrote: “To this day [Alex] was one of the most safety-conscious tree surgeons…

treefall161130Atlanta, Georgia, Journal-Constitution, November 29, 2016: How to know whether your tree will fall in a Georgia storm

Trees provide many benefits, but during Georgia storms, they can fall and create a dangerous situation. The following guide will help you keep your trees from falling (when possible) and know what to do if it happens. Trees can fall during storms for a variety of reasons, including: Winds: Winds can uproot a tree, with the tree trunk acting as a lever. This is a greater problem for tall trees, because the force that’s applied to the roots and trunk is greater as the tree’s height increases, according to Scientific American. This can also happen if a tree was previously in a more forested area, protected by other trees that have since been cut down (to create a new housing lot, for example). Rain: When the ground becomes saturated from large amounts of rain, trees can topple more easily. The more wet the ground is, the less wind it will take to make it fall. Ice: During an ice storm, the weight of ice can increase the weight of branches by 30 times…

Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, Public Opinion, November 29, 2016: Christmas tree growers see brisk sales

Warm weather is helping to boost Christmas tree sales, according to area growers, making business this year so far as good or better than last year. “We have seen that more people and their families are coming out to because it’s been warmer than usual,” said Doug Elliot, son of owner Bill Elliott of Elliott’s Christmas Trees, Willow Hill. “It’s great to not have cold weather because the trees will last longer.” Dennis Kauffman, co-owner of Kauffman Family Christmas Tree Farm in Waynesboro, believes this year could be his best year ever. “Currently we are equal to or better than last year, which was our best year ever,” he said. “So this season could definitely be as good as we have ever done…”

xmastreecut161128Davenport, Iowa, The Quad Cities Times, November 28, 2016: Christmas tree farmers ready for rush

Apparently, people don’t cut down their own Christmas trees in Texas. So, Moline native Tyggenn White, who now lives in Dallas, decided to reunite with her family this month in the Quad-Cities to share the experience with her young daughter. “It’s just not something people do there,” said White, who traveled back to the chilly Midwest with her mother, husband and daughter. “It’s a harsh homecoming weather-wise.” Handed a saw and measuring stick, the family of nine, including three little ones, battled chilling winds to find the “greatest tree” the old-fashioned way at Wyffels Tree Farm in Moline…

West Lafayette, Indiana, Purdue University Ag News, November 28, 2016: Christmas tree supply looks strong for 2016 holiday season

People ready for some holiday cheer can celebrate a healthy 2016 Christmas tree supply with plenty of choices in size and species, said Daniel Cassens, a Purdue University professor of forestry and natural resources and Purdue Extension wood products specialist. A dry summer and wet autumn initially caused some worries, said Cassens, who has grown and sold Christmas trees for 38 years at his farm at 5038 Morehouse Road, West Lafayette. “Conifers don’t like wet feet and we had a wet August,” he said. “And the dry June and July were a bit scary, especially for seedlings. But we’ve seen no lasting effects from weather and no significant insect or fungal problems either. The trees look very healthy.” Cassens, a member of the National Christmas Tree Association and the Indiana Christmas Tree Growers Association, said that while most tree shopping typically happens after Thanksgiving, some consumers had already started purchasing their trees by mid-November. Prices for Christmas trees typically vary according to the species, quality and size of the tree, with smaller trees selling for less than larger or more exotic ones…

giffordforest161128Portland, Oregon, KOIN-TV, November 28, 2016: ‘Big Tree’ in Gifford Pinchot Forest dies

One of the oldest and tallest ponderosa pines in the Pacific Northwest has died with little fanfare after hundreds of years. The Columbian says the so-called “Big Tree” was a well-known attraction for tourists driving through the Columbia River Gorge. The 213-foot-tall ponderosa near Trout Lake in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in southwest Washington died last year but its demise was not made public. The Big Tree contained about 22,000 board feet of lumber – enough wood to frame almost one and a half 2,400-square-foot homes. No one knows exactly how old it was, but guesses range from 370 years old to more than 500 years old…

Realtor.com, November 28, 2016: Did Christmas Tree bugs hitch a ride into your house?

Picking the perfect live Christmas tree from a farm or lot is a tradition many people love—there’s nothing like the scent of a freshly cut pine tree to usher in the holiday spirit. Still, with a live tree comes the possibility of bringing home some unwelcome guests: namely Christmas tree bugs hitching a ride into your house. These tree-dwelling insects tend to go dormant during the cold months, but as soon as you bring your tree indoors and the bugs warm up, they can spring right back to life. That means that in addition to cleaning up pine needles, you might also have to deal with a whole party of crawly critters, too. Christmas chaos! Don’t worry, though—it’s relatively easy to kick ’em out. The best way to rid your Christmas tree of bugs is to shake it off—with a mechanical tree shaker, that is. Many lots and farms have a shaking service…xmastree161128Toledo, Ohio, Blade, November 27, 2016: Oh, Christmas tree! Tips to keep your fir fit for the holidays

The Thanksgiving dishes are back in the cupboard, and the long table has been stowed away for another month. Now, it is time to get serious about decorating for Christmas. The tree is the typical focal point. Let’s cut through some of the facts and fiction when it comes to your tree. Fact: If you are a faux tree fan, invest in a tree that is pre-lit to save on the frustration of stringing it with lights. Fiction: Drilling holes at the base of your real tree will help it take up water. (In fact, the tree’s trunk has millions of tiny straw-like cavities that take up water and drilling one hole doesn’t open them back up again once they have been clogged.) Fact: Always give your real tree a fresh cut at the bottom, then immediately put it in water so it will keep taking up water for weeks to come. Fiction: You should give your tree hot water. (Actually, scientists say the water can be any temperature. Warmer water doesn’t go up any faster than cold)…

Mason City, Iowa, KIMT-TV, November 27, 2016: Tree limb-cutting leads to fire response

Firefighters responded to what was thought to be a house fire in Clear Lake Sunday afternoon, only to find that the smoke was coming from a wood-clearing project. According to a statement from the Clear Lake Fire Department, the report was called in at around 4 p.m., when smoke was seen coming from 1605 1st Avenue North. Two pumper trumps, one rescue unit, and 13 firefighters converged on the home, where they found the smoke was coming from an “occupant cutting down tree limbs.” Firefighters say limbs knocked down power lines in front of the home, which led to current shooting back into the house. That produced smoke in the basement. Firefighters used a fan to pull smoke from the basement level of the home. No injuries were reported…

hammersch161128New York City, Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2016: The hardest thing about Hammerschlagen is scoring a tree stump

Tyler Wilbricht was driving on the rural outskirts of Madison, Wis., last spring when he spotted the perfect gift for his brother’s wedding: a soggy maple tree lying in massive sections on the side of the road near a dairy farm. Mr. Wilbricht’s brother, Nick, is a devotee of Hammerschlagen—or Stump, as some call it—a game that is increasingly popular at tailgate parties, outdoor concerts, beer festivals and family barbecues. The game is simple: players compete to hammer nails into a circular wood surface. In Stump, players typically must flip the hammer in the air before striking their opponents’ nails; the player with the last nail standing wins. In Hammerschlagen (German for hammer strike, a nod to its supposed Bavarian origins), each player strikes his own nail. The task demands strength, dexterity, focus and, often, a lot of beer. Above all, it requires a tree stump. And good stumps aren’t easy to come by…

Newton, New Jersey, New Jersey Herald, November 27, 2016: How to choose a fresh Christmas tree

Selecting a fresh Christmas tree is a beloved tradition for many of us. Sadly, all trees, including evergreens, have been severely stressed by this year’s drought. Here are some tips for choosing a tree that will hold onto its needles and look its best for the holidays. Choose a tree that has been grown locally. Many local Christmas tree farms will have precut trees ready on the weekends and generally cut their trees just a day or too before. Precut trees trucked in from New England, New York, or Pennsylvania — where they also suffered a drought — have been cut and drying out for a week or more and will not last as long. Look carefully at the needles on the tree. Avoid any trees with needles tipped with yellow or brown. The American Christmas Tree Association advises these methods for assessing a tree’s freshness: “Grasp a branch in your hand, about a foot from the end, and pull your hand back, letting the branch slip through your fingers. The needles should stay attached to the branch, and not come off in your hand. You can also grasp the tree by the trunk and tap the base of it against the ground. If a cloud of needles falls to the ground, then the tree is well on its way to being dead. The needles and branches should also be flexible when bent. If they break or don’t spring back into shape, the tree is drying out. Another way to tell if a tree is still fresh and lively is by smelling the branches and trunk. If it still has that sappy, earthy smell, then the tree will probably last for several more weeks. If it’s odorless, then you should give it a pass…”

xmastree161125Willoughby, Ohio, News Herald, November 23, 2016: Christmas tree farm in Painesville Township blends business, pleasure for owner

Rob Kennedy, owner of Kennedy Tree Farm in Painesville Township, said his business offers a festive Christmas tree-hunting experience, with carols playing, a fire going, and hot chocolate and goodies for patrons. But he suspects that something else may keep some customers coming back: Braylee. “She’s a 5-year-old yellow Lab,” said Kennedy, who bought the spot at 320 Bowhall Road a few years back. “She’s a huge hit and people literally come here to see her. “Last year a woman told me, ‘We ask the kids where they wanted to go get a tree and they said the place with the doggie…’ “

Sunbury, Pennsylvania, Daily Item, November 23, 2016: From turkey to tinsel: Tree farms get ready for Christmas tree sales

As area residents wrap up their Thanksgiving Day festivities, farms across the Valley are ready to sell thousands of Christmas trees. Alan Ard, the co-owner of Ard’s Farm in Lewisburg, said they sell 800 to 900 trees each season.
Kirk Decker, of the Decker Tree Farm in Middleburg, said his farm usually sells 3,000 trees wholesale at auction and 300 trees to retail customers at the farm. Stan Kohl, the owner of Kohls Stony Hill Tree Farm in Milton, said they will sell 2,000 to 3,000 trees. Kohl said his farm attracts customers from Maryland and New Jersey. “It impresses me that they pass countless tree lots on the way up and they still choose mine,” he said. Kohl recalls many out-of-state families seeking him out to tell him they’ve returned to get their tree from his farm. He said when it comes to the Christmas tree business, customer service always matters…

millfiredamage161125San Andreas, California, Calaveras Enterprise, November 23, 2016: Beauty hewn from disaster: Butte fire and Bark Beetle-ravaged trees feed new industry

Trees in Sierra Nevada forests are dying in large numbers due to fires such as the Rim and Butte fires, drought and the ravages of bark beetles. Some of those millions of trees are even now being cut down because the trees threaten homes, power lines or roads. The number of logs far outstrips the capacity of area mills. And in some cases, conventional mill owners don’t even want the material due to insect damage or the wood’s rapid decay after the trees die. Ultimately, most of it may be chipped or burned. Yet some area artisans are finding ways to make use of that timber, including the so-called “blue stained” wood from trees that have been standing dead for a year or more. Diane Winsby of Calaveras Lumber in Angels Camp said she has seen an increase in orders for blue stained wood that she believes it will increase as more people become aware of its uses. Right now, she said, Calaveras Lumber does not stock blue stained wood but the company will take special orders…

Gwinnett, Georgia, Daily Post, November 23, 2016: How to manage trees in distress in the home landscape

Why does a tree suddenly begin to wilt and die? What could cause one tree to suffer while others nearby remain healthy? In recent years, trees in our area have been under high-stress levels as a result of droughts, construction activities, storms, insects, and diseases. Often the symptoms do not become apparent until months or even years after the affliction has begun. If any trees on your property are of concern, consider hiring a Certified Arborist to do a thorough assessment of the tree. Certified Arborists are professionals who have passed a special licensing exam and have met certain requirements through the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA). Arborists are well trained in many facets of tree care including tree health, pest management, soil fertility, assessing storm damage, and proper pruning techniques. An arborist can examine and identify the potential risks of trees on your property and recommend specific treatments, such as pruning, to maintain their health and vigor…

treefarm161123Chicago, Illinois, Tribune, November 22, 2016: Skip Black Friday shopping; spend the day at the Christmas tree farm

Chris Czarnowski is hoping that more people skip Black Friday shopping trips in favor of a morning spent at his family’s Christmas tree farm. They own Ben’s Tree Farm in Harvard, and he said that thanks to the rain and warm weather, they have a great looking crop of trees this year. The late Ben Czarnowski opened the tree farm in 1986. Today, it’s run by his three sons. There are also two grandsons named Ben, so the future of the farm looks bright. “We have customers who are second generation — they came as kids and now they’re married and are bringing their kids,” he said. “Especially during that retail season of Christmas, you picture all those crazy Black Friday shoppers, but it’s like a totally different thing to do that weekend. It’s a good alternative..”

New York City, New York Times, November 22, 2016: Statehouse workers deem Christmas tree too puny, replace it

A Christmas tree selected for the Rhode Island Statehouse rotunda has been removed after staff decided it was too puny. The 14-foot-tall Fraser fir was donated by a tree farm. Workers put it up Tuesday but then realized it was too small and didn’t fill the rotunda. The governor’s office says the little tree was moved outside to the statehouse steps and will be decorated and displayed there. The office has gotten a 20-foot-tall Balsam to replace it…

cuttrees161123Washington, D.C., Post, November 22, 2016: These activists paid to protect trees that were later cut down

Tree crews working along the George Washington Memorial Parkway have removed about 70 trees from the Dyke Marsh Wildlife Preserve, upsetting activists who had raised money to protect some of those trees. National Park Service officials say the move is part of a broader effort to eliminate trees killed by the emerald ash borer, an exotic beetle, and to reduce the risk of branches or trees falling on passersby. Trees also are being removed along the parkway in Arlington, near Spout Run, as they were in the Great Falls area a year or two ago, said Aaron LaRocca, chief of staff for the superintendent of the parkway. Some diseased oak trees in the median of the parkway near Daingerfield Island in Alexandria also will be taken out soon…

Wake Forest, North Carolina, The Creole, November 22, 2016: Here are some tips for selecting, planting trees

October to March is the prime season for planting hardy trees in Louisiana, and November through early December is an especially good time. The soil is still warm, which encourages vigorous root growth, and trees will have several months to get established before next summer’s heat. At the same time, the weather is cool and the trees are going dormant, which reduce stress. Generous rainfall during winter makes constant attention to watering unnecessary. Planting at this time is especially beneficial for balled-and-burlapped trees because they lose so much of their root system when they are dug. The trees you plant eventually will grow much larger than the saplings you purchase and bring home from the nursery. Although it is tempting to plant more trees than you really need, years later you will realize you made a terrible mistake. No one tree is perfect tree for Louisiana. All trees have advantages and disadvantages, depending on the planting location and desired characteristics. Here are some points you need to consider…

grandchildren161122Louisville, Kentucky, Courier-Journal, November 21, 2016: Tree ordinance to follow $1M trees donation

TreesLouisville will receive a $1 million matching grant, allowing the nonprofit group formed last year to enter a new phase in its effort to help rebuild the city’s depleted tree canopy. And Metro Councilman Bill Hollander said Monday that he will introduce a long-anticipated tree protection ordinance by Dec. 5. The ordinance will regulate the protection of trees on public rights-of-ways while offering owners of private property voluntary methods of protecting their trees. Both announcements were made Monday at a news conference at Gilmore Lane Elementary School, where private donors working with TreesLouisville and Jefferson County Public Schools have already planted more than 60 news trees. Susan Barry, president & CEO of the Community Foundation of Louisville, said the foundation received $1 million to be used as a challenge for other donations to its TreesLouisville Fund. The immediate goal is to double the $1 million, which officials said came from an anonymous donor…

CNBC, November 21, 2016: Get the best Christmas tree money can buy. Here’s why

When it comes to buying a long-lasting, low-maintenance holiday tree, go with the fir and avoid the spruce. That’s the recommendation from Christmas tree experts, including the self-proclaimed “Chuck Norris of Forestry” Les Werner, a forestry professor at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. “Firs will be the longest-lasting trees, and they’re the ones with the fragrance you associate with Christmas,” he said. Oscar Sloterbeck, senior managing director at investment banking firm Evercore and author of the company’s annual Christmas tree sales survey, agrees. “I’m a fan of the Douglas fir,” he said. “It holds the needles and color longer.” But don’t take their word for it. Science is on the side of the fir…

maple161122Morganton, North Carolina, News-Herald, November 21, 2016: The mystery of the missing maple tree – Burke County Notebook

Every Tuesday when I go to the Collett Street Recreation Center for our writing group, I round the corner at the Financial Building across the street and am once again dismayed at the large gaping hole staring at me where a beautiful, healthy, maple tree once stood. My friends, Ian and Terri Robins and I tried to count the rings on the stump to see how old the tree was. Some of the rings were about an inch apart indicating fast growth because of good weather conditions, the right amount of rain, maybe a long summer like this past one. Other rings were closer together, showing the summer had been too dry for much growth. We never did get the rings counted, so we started estimating the age of the tree by its size. I think Ian came to the conclusion that the tree was about 60 years old. I thought it might be closer to 75…

Staunton, Virginia, Augusta Free Press, November 21, 2016: Virginia Christmas tree growers deliver on this year’s harvest

It’s not quite Thanksgiving, but the Christmas tree harvest is in full swing and Virginia growers are experiencing a good one. The state’s Christmas tree industry includes thousands of growers, according to the Virginia Christmas Tree Growers Association. It is estimated that they have more than 7 million trees planted. VCTGA Vice President John Carroll grows several varieties of Christmas trees at Claybrooke Christmas Tree Farm, a choose-and-cut operation in Louisa County. “The crop is good this year,” Carroll said. “Most choose-and-cut growers are selling most of their inventory every year, and this year won’t be any exception. Seventy-five percent of sales are derived from the experience of finding the perfect tree in the field.” Most growers are sensitive to keeping their product affordable. “There will most likely be a modest increase in tree prices this season to help recoup some of the recent increases in production costs,” Carroll said…

copperwood161121Stamford, Connecticut, Advocate, November 20, 2016: Greenwich resident fights to save majestic copper beech tree

When a fire destroyed a home she owned in town last year, Old Greenwich resident Chris Katsigiannis had no doubt she would rebuild. But while new home construction often means making changes, Katsigiannis was adamant one thing would not change. A beloved copper beech tree on the property, estimated by arborists to be at least 150 years old and 65 feet high, was pegged for removal by professionals planning the new house. “The architect is not a tree lover like me and she just kept saying, ‘The tree has to go’ and I kept saying, ‘No the tree stays. Make the house smaller instead,’” Katsigiannis said. “And here we are. The tree has stayed and while we had to trim one limb the rest is intact.” Three arborists have looked at the tree and said it has a more than 50 percent chance of survival, despite some serious challenges over the past year, she said…

New York City, Fox News, November 20, 2016: City eyed $41G in fines from Trump supporter over tree fliers

WABC-TV reports that Mike Ricatto, 59, plastered trees in his Kew Gardens, Queens, neighborhood with “wanted” fliers after Donald Trump campaign signs in his front yard were stolen. Ricatto’s surveillance cameras captured a grainy picture of the thief which he put on the fliers. The Parks Department claims the staples Ricatto used to post the fliers caused damage to the trees, though the department’s own lawyer said staples don’t damage trees, according to the station. “Weeks and week later, I got visited by some Parks Department personnel and they handed me 22 summonses,” Ricatto told the station…

cutwood161121London, Ontario, Free Press, November 20, 2016: Tree rules were passed for developers, not the devout

The city beefed up its tree-protection bylaw to preserve vast stands of trees from being cut down by developers without a permit, a city councillor says. The bylaw is in the spotlight after St. Peter’s seminary cut down 100 trees without a permit last week. “It used to be that if you had trees on private property and not on protected land, you could cut down trees,” Coun, Phil Squire said. “That led to a lot of issues where developers cut down trees and citizens were rightly upset.” Residents of Old North are upset that trees, including some stately pines and black walnuts about 100 years old, were cut down last week on the seminary property on Waterloo Street…

Norwalk, Ohio, Reflector, November 19, 2016: Tree trimmer dies from injuries in crash

A Bucyus man has died from injuries sustained in Thursday’s crash on Ohio 13 near Fitchville. Zachary T. Warner, 34, died Saturday morning at St. Vincent Medical Center in Toledo. The crash remains under investigation and charges are still pending, said troopers with the Norwalk post of the state Highway Patrol. Warner, 34, of Bucyrus, was one of three men working for Oberlander’s Tree and Landscaping of Bucyrus who were hurt in the accident. Troopers said two vehicles belonging to Oberlander’s — a 2004 International bucket truck and a 2012 Dodge pickup — were parked in the northbound lanes of Ohio 13 just north of U.S. 224 and a flagger was in place behind the vehicles just before 11 a.m. Warner and two workmates — Calvin J. Hoover, 50, of Tiffin, and Ryan A. Niedermeier, 28, of Bucyrus — were standing near the vehicles, getting ready to trim evergreens along the power lines for Firelands Cooperative Electric Co., when a northbound commercial semi-tractor failed to stop and struck both tree company vehicles and the three men, troopers said…

bambooz161118New Jersey Advance, November 17, 2016: Bamboozled: After a tree fell in the driveway…

We didn’t see it coming. Or hear it happen. During a windy day last month, a 40-foot tree landed in our driveway. Right on top of the glorious Bamboozled minivan. We went outside to look, and boy, we were lucky. Only the very top branches grazed the minivan, leaving one small dent on the bumper and a couple of minor scratches. But we had a 40-foot tree laying across the driveway. The plan was to get estimates to remove the tree, but also to have someone assess the health of two trees that seemed to share their fallen brother’s root ball, and a fourth tree, some 65 feet tall, in the same planter bed. We didn’t want to see any of the trees go. Year after year, the trees were the backdrop for many family photos. They provided shade, and copious piles of leaves for the kids to play in. This quartet of trees even had an interesting survival story. During the construction of our development in the 1980s, the home’s original owner said, the builder wanted to remove the trees. It was a big fight, but the homeowner prevailed and the trees remained. But alas, it was probably time for the trees to come down before one landed on the house…

Roslyn Harbor, New York, The Island Now, November 17, 2016: Tree removal splits Harbor Board

Members of the Roslyn Harbor Board of Trustees aired disagreements last Thursday over a possible limit on a resident’s capacity to cut down trees. The difference of opinion centered on the mayor’s proposal that next-door neighbors be notified if a resident requests a permit to remove a tree that provides significant screening, or protection from outside view, for the neighbor’s property. “If the Tree Committee makes the determination that a tree removal will have a significant adverse effect on screening then it will let the neighbor know,” Mayor Louis Badolato said…

protest161118London, UK, The Sun, November 17, 2016: Two OAPs arrested after coming to blows with council workers over secret tree-cutting plans

TWO gutsy pensioners were arrested by cops yesterday after council killjoys ordered the felling of eight 100-year-old trees in a dawn raid. Retired uni lecturer Jenny Hockey, 70, and ex- teacher Freda Brayshaw, 71, were seized after they raced out into the street to protest at the secret 5am operation. The pair refused to budge from one of the targeted trees to thwart council workmen armed with chainsaws but were carted away for a breach of the peace. Jenny’s husband Bob, 72, fumed: “All the neighbours were woken up at around 5am and asked to move their cars. “Jenny was straight out and said the residents had not been told that the trees would be taken down…

Springfield, Missouri, News=Leader, November 17, 2016: Trees provide numerous benefits to landownersTrees can provide a multitude of benefits to your acreage.

Whether you have a large farming operation or merely own a few acres outside the city limits, planting the right trees in the right places can make big improvements to your land. Besides improving the aesthetics of your property, trees can also produce economic benefits for the landowner in many cases. Landowners wishing to make forestry improvements on their property can do so through the Missouri Department of Conservation’s annual tree seedling sales program, which is currently underway. Through this program, landowners can purchase bundles of seedling trees from the department’s George O. White Nursery in Licking. Bundle sizes vary, depending on the purpose of the planting, but most range between 25 and 50 plants. The ordering period will run through May 1. Orders are filled on a first come, first served basis. Because of the popularity of this program, shortages in planting stock of some species occur soon after the ordering process starts. The toll-free number listed in the order form allows customers to find out what tree types are still available. The number will be operational beginning Dec. 1…

scorpion161117Baton Rouge, Louisiana, WAFB-TV, November 16, 2016: Neighbors blame tree nursery for scorpion invasion

Some residents in a suburban Phoenix neighborhood believe a spike in scorpion sightings and stings is connected to an Arizona Department of Transportation temporary nursery across the street. “It’s getting pretty bad,” said Fabian Spencer, who lives in the area.Homeowners near Pecos Road and 27th Avenue report scorpion bites to people and pets with a lot of trees, cacti and bushes now stored in the area for the construction of the South Mountain Freeway. Once it’s built, everything in the nursery will be replanted. “With me, I know it was a pretty painful experience when I got stung. I can only imagine, God forbid, something happen to my child,” said Rasheed Amoo, who lives in the area. While some homeowners have increased pest control spraying from one to three times a month, others like Rasheed Amoo are going around their property looking for scorpions daily with a flashlight. “I’m definitely a scorpion watcher right now,” said Amoo…

Larne, Ireland, BBC, November 16, 2016: ‘Eyesore’ Irish Christmas tree replaced after complaints

A Christmas tree in the centre of Larne has been replaced after complaints that it was an “eyesore”. It has been swapped for a more festive offering, ahead of the town’s annual tree light switch-on ceremony. Local people and councillors had taken to Facebook to cry bah-humbug about the “sad-looking tree.” It comes after a festive village tree in Bushmills was removed in 2014 after it was described as “one of the worst ever seen in the UK…”

fence161117Tacoma, Washington, News-Tribune, November 16, 2016: Neighbor’s tree just flattened your fence? You’ll still have to pay


Your neighbor’s Doug fir just smashed your fence, punched a hole in your roof and turned your truck into a convertible. They have to pay for the damages, don’t they? No. You do. But that misconception is held by the vast majority of homeowners in Washington, according to a new poll by PEMCO Insurance Northwest. Just 18 percent of respondents in the June survey correctly knew they must accept responsibility for repairing a damaged fence when it gets flattened by a cedar branch or other act of nature…


Dallas, Texas, Dallas Morning News, November 15, 2016: If your tree is suffering from fungus, this might be the culprit

Question: I have a Bradford pear tree (19 years old) that is very sick with fungus. I did the sick tree treatment, except for the zeolite, which I’ve not been able to find. The tree bark is missing from the exposed root flare up the trunk about 6 inches. It also has orange fungus-looking growth on the root flare and the roots are disintegrating in some places. I’ve given it lots of water. Would the zeolite make any difference? If this is a fungus, how likely is it to spread to my nearby trees? Is it likely that this was caused by too much water? If I have to remove the tree and am able to remove all the roots, is it possible to plant another tree in that same location? — S.K., Denton

Answer: Zeolite might be some help, the overwatering probably is the culprit, the Sick Tree Treatment is the solution, and planting other plants in this location is fine if the drainage is fixed and organic techniques are used…

trimmerfalls161116Oakland, Michigan, Press, November 14, 2016: Tree trimmer dies after fall from 50 feet above ground in Bloomfield Hills

A 40-year-old Detroit man contracted to trim trees at a home in Bloomfield Hills died last week after a safety line holding him up failed, police say. At about 11:40 a.m. Nov. 10, Bloomfield Hills Public Safety Department officers were called to a home in the area of Woodward Avenue, south of Long Lake Road, after residents reported a tree trimmer fell out of a tree and was not breathing. Police and fire personnel tried life-saving techniques, but the tree trimmer was pronounced dead at the scene. Officials said it appeared the man died from head and neck trauma in the fall. Investigators said that the 40-year-old man was in a tree 40-50 feet above the ground, removing branches and vines from a large tree with a chainsaw and hand saws. Investigators in a media release stated they “found a safety line that appears to have failed and is believed to be a factor in the fall…”

Perrysburg, Ohio, WTOL-TV, November 15, 2016: Perrysburg neighbors upset about trees cut down to clear ditch

Some residents in a Perrysburg neighborhood are angry after city crews cut down dozens of trees along a ditch at the edge of their backyards. “So now, you just look down Fort Meigs Road and it’s decimated. It’s like World War II happened. There’s nothing lovely about Fort Meigs Road anymore,” said Rachel Schmitz, who lives in the neighborhood. Schmitz said she wasn’t able to see Fort Meigs Road from her backyard, but that changed last week when she said she counted about 90 trees cut down by a city crew. The cut trees cleared the ditch just beyond her property line. “I’ve lost my privacy. I’ve lost my property value because when we moved in 16 years ago, there was a lovely canopy of trees,” said Schmitz…

ozark161116National Parks Traveler, November 15, 2016: Men pay more than $52,000 for cutting down 400 trees in Ozark National Scenic Riverways

Two men who accidentally logged some 400 trees from across 31 acres of Ozark National Scenic Riverways in Missouri have paid restitution of more than $52,000 to the federal government, which declined to seek criminal charges as the men exhibited no criminal intent. The total bill paid by the men was $52,469, according to a release from the National Park Service’s Investigative Services Branch. The amount was reached in a pretrial diversion agreement between the men and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of Missouri, and equals the cost of site remediation and the sale price of the erroneously-harvested timber, the release said. NPS Special Agent Les Seago said Monday morning that the men had been logging on lands outside of the park for about a year, and during their operations they didn’t realize they were taking trees from within the park boundaries. “They were cutting on private property,” he said. “They had purchased the rights for timber on this private land that butts up against National Park Service lands, and they encroached into the national park…”

Los Angeles, California, Times, November 15, 2016: Trees are undergoing stress in California’s drought; water with care

While dutiful homeowners have been severely limiting — or ceasing — the watering of their lawns and gardens to comply with drought restrictions, one potential fallout is sometimes overlooked: the health of the residential tree canopy. In July, Mayor Judy Nelson of Glendora, a city that prizes its 18,000 trees, was one of the first public officials to raise this issue. Criticized for the city’s threat to fine a couple who let their lawn go brown (they said they were responding to Gov. Jerry Brown’s call to conserve water), Nelson explained, “We are very concerned that we’re going to be losing trees because people are not watering.” In fact, the region’s trees are increasingly stressed from lack of deep watering. Warning signs include premature yellowing or browning, early dropping of leaves and lack of vigorous growth. And then there is what might be called the “fading of the green”: A lack of water limits production of green chlorophyll that gives leaves their vibrancy…

stolentree161115Jacksonville, Florida, WJAX-TV, November 14, 2016: Palm trees stolen from Riverside yard

While a Riverside couple was away on Saturday, someone came to their yard, dug up two of their palm trees and hauled them away in a pickup truck. A neighbor took video and pictures of the crime, not knowing at the time that it was happening without permission from the homeowners. He said it took the man hours to dig up the trees and get them in his pickup. When the couple came home, there were two big holes in the yard where their two, 3-4 foot Sabal palm trees used to sit. The neighbors thought it was funny more than sinister. Homeowner Renee Garber said she hopes that someone will recognize the man and call police.”I was hoping maybe somebody did hire him and he got the wrong address, but the mess he left in the yard,” Garber said. “I mean, you left the roots. He hacked off all the roots from the tree, so I don’t even think they’re re-plantable…”

New York City, Wall Street Journal, November 12, 2016: Timber Baron Merlo changed housing construction with plywood substitute

Harry Merlo worked his way out of poverty, boxed for the Marines, married a beauty queen, founded a winery and tried to teach manners to the tennis star John McEnroe. He was equally bold in business. As chief executive of timber company Louisiana-Pacific Corp. , he invested heavily in what was then a little-known product, oriented strand board, a cheaper substitute for plywood. That mottled board now serves as wall, floor and roof panels for most new U.S. homes. The company’s directors pushed him out in 1995 when defects in a related siding product led to a barrage of lawsuits. “Yes, I have also suffered a few setbacks,” he wrote in a memoir, “but I regard these as part of a full life.” Mr. Merlo died Oct. 24 at home in Portland, Ore. He was 91 and had been suffering from leukemia…

girltree161115Winnipeg, Manitoba, Good Morning America, November 14, 2015: Girl gets parting gift when beloved tree is removed from her yard

One little girl in Winnipeg, Canada, was horribly distraught when the beloved but dying tree in her front yard was cut down. But all that changed when she returned home from errands with her mom to a very special surprise from the tree removal company. The group of men doing the tree removal had hand-carved the 4-year-old’s name, Shae, into tree “cookies” made from the stump, as well as built her a small, four-legged stool from the base of the tree to cherish forever. “It’s so amazing,” Shae’s mom, Jackie Culley, told ABC News of the men’s kind gesture. “Everybody thinks companies are just doing their job and that’s it and they just move along. They clearly took time out of their day to do something special and kind for her. “She was so happy,” Culley added. “She went from so upset, barely talking and very quiet all afternoon, to when we came home, she was just beaming, smiling from ear to ear…”

Rochester, Minnesota, Post-Bulletin, November 11, 2016: Rochester man killed by falling tree

A 59-year-old man died Saturday when the tree he was cutting down struck him when it fell, authorities said today. First responders were called at 6:01 p.m. to the 7300 block of Genoa Road Northwest, in Kalmar Township, where they found Raymond R. Phelps. His wife told officers he’d gone out about 3 p.m. to take down a tree on the property; when she returned from an errand about 5 p.m., Phelps hadn’t returned. “It looks like the tree he was cutting got caught in some other trees and snapped in half,” said Capt. Scott Behrns of the Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office. “It fell backward and hit the victim in the head…”

bostonxmas161114Boston, Massachusetts, Globe, November 13, 2016: Here’s Boston’s 2016 Christmas tree—in its natural habitat

Before it is strewn with lights and illuminated amid a flurry of fireworks on the Common next month, Boston’s 2016 Christmas tree sits unassumingly off a two-lane road in a tiny Nova Scotian village. This year’s tree has a longer trip than any of its predecessors. For the first time in the 45-year tradition, an annual showing of gratitude, the tree comes from Cape Breton, the scenic, north-easternmost island region of Nova Scotia. Each year since 1971, the Canadian province has given Boston a tree as a thank you for the city’s response following the 1917 Halifax Explosion. The 47-foot white spruce is set to be cut down during a public ceremony Tuesday and will receive a public send-off Wednesday in Halifax before its 700-mile journey to Tremont Street. The tree will weave its way through downtown Boston to the Common on Friday…

Weston, Connecticut, The Forum, November 12, 2016: Norfield Tree is spared the ax, will not be cut down

The Norfield Tree, which had been slated to be cut down, has been given a reprieve. In a decision dated Nov. 11, and posted on the town of Weston’s website, Tree Warden William Lomas said the mighty red oak will remain, subject to “several risk mitigation procedures.” The decision follows a public hearing where many residents spoke in favor of saving the tree, and a peaceful demonstration by members of the Weston Garden Club who circled the tree asking for it to be spared. Lomas said he came to the decision not to uproot the tree based on “much thought and deliberation on the input provided to me by Weston town officials, Connecticut licensed arborists and concerned, informed citizens, as well as weighing safety, aesthetics and historic precedent in my best efforts to administer my duties as tree warden for the care and maintenance of all municipal trees and bushes in town…”

scroads161114Columbia, South Carolina, The State, November 13, 2016: Want safer roads? Clear the trees

All of us have had distractions while driving — children needing assistance, spilled drinks, not paying attention, electronic devices. Even drivers who are doing everything exactly right are forced off the road by an irresponsible vehicle or circumstance beyond their control. Nearly half of S.C. traffic deaths occur when drivers run off the road. And in a fifth of those cases, the drivers die when they crash into a tree. The fact is that the safest roads have clear zones or areas of recovery so motorists who make a mistake and run off the road don’t pay for it with their lives. More than two-thirds of the land in South Carolina is forested. Most of the trees close to the roads are common pines and other insignificant woody vegetation. And as we were reminded when trees fell across so many roads during Hurricane Matthew, good clear zones would result in fewer closed roads, providing less inconvenience and more safety after a storm. Also, appropriate roadway clear zones would translate into fewer power lines being knocked down by falling trees, and a smaller number of homes losing power for long periods…

Rock Hill, South Carolina, Herald, November 13, 2016: York “uproar” saved courthouse Christmas Tree. Now it has lights in time for Santa

The Grinch, he did not steal the Christmas Tree in York. The people kicked the green goblin out. And just in time for Santa and his reindeer, the huge tree saved from the ax by the uproar from York residents will have $2,000 worth of new lights. The Yorkville Historical Society – riding the outcry wave that kept politicians and bureaucrats from cutting down the 100-plus foot deodar cedar at the corner of Liberty and Congress streets next to the York County Courthouse for eight decades at least – bought the lights. And the city’s fire department is putting them up. The lights will be unveiled Dec. 7 right after the city’s Christmas parade. “The people of York raised a mighty outcry and wanted to save the tree and now we will have new lights on the tree,” said Gary Gross of the Yorkville Historical Society. “And not just this year. For years to come…”,

rocktree161111New York City, NBC Today, November 10, 2016: The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree is on its way! Here’s why it’s so special

A tree that has been a fixture for the Eichler family at their New York home is going from being second base in backyard stickball games to a sight that will delight millions at Rockefeller Center this Christmas season. The 94-foot-tall, 14-ton Norway Spruce will make its way from their home in Oneonta to the big city, where it will be wrapped with five miles of multi-colored LED lights and topped with a Swarovski star made of 25,000 crystals to become this year’s Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. “We’re so thrilled and so thankful to share our tree with the world,” Angie Eichler told Dylan Dreyer on TODAY Thursday. About 800,000 people a day are expected to come see the tree after the official lighting ceremony on Nov. 30, and then it will be milled into lumber for Habitat for Humanity after Jan. 7, the last day for viewing…

New Haven, Connecticut, Register, November 10, 2016: DEEP to replace tree they took down in West Rock Park in Hamden

A tree that stood for decades at West Rock Park and taken down without notice in February, angering many who use the park, will be replaced, according to local officials. The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection ordered the tree removed in February, and many park users were surprised and upset to see two DEEP employees chopping it down on Feb. 2. The department took the tree down because DEEP officials determined that the field where the tree stood was better suited as a meadow that would attract birds and other wildlife, DEEP spokesman Dennis Schain said. The tree was an easy spot for predators such as hawks that feed on the wildlife to perch, he said, and also was an attraction for people and dogs that would disrupt the habitat. But after the tree was removed, many park users protested, which led to allegations that a conversation between a member of the West Rock Park Association and a DEEP commissioner ended in the commissioner using expletives. That prompted the Legislative Council to direct Mayor Curt Balzano Leng to contact Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s office about the conversation. The DEEP is now willing to replace the tree, according to state Rep. Michael D’Agostino, D-Hamden. He and state Sen. Joseph Crisco, D-Woodbridge, have been working with the department and residents upset about the tree removal on a resolution, he said…

savannatree161111The Conversation, November 10, 2016: Africa’s spiny trees offer lessons in understanding the earth’s ecology

The Serengeti; Chobe; Kruger; the Masai Mara: in many people’s minds, savannas are Africa. This hasn’t always been true, though. About 30 million years ago, the continent was largely covered by forests. So how did Africa’s vast, tree-dotted grassy ecosystems come to be? Until now, fire has been viewed as the main protagonist. It was believed that blazes rolled back tree cover in the continent’s wetter regions and provided fire-promoting grasses with access to the light they need to thrive. This story played out around seven million years ago and is told in the fossil charcoal records and the DNA of fire-adapted savanna trees. But research my colleagues and I have conducted reveals that savanna trees hold more secrets – and that medium-sized browsing animals played a much earlier role than fire in developing savannas…

Denver, Colorado, KUSA-TV, November 10, 2016: Should I keep watering my trees this late in the year?

“I’m in no hurry to see the snow start falling, but I’m worried about my trees. Last time it stayed this warm, Denver plunged 70 degrees in one day, killing off several small trees in my neighborhood. Should I still water my small trees in this drought, or is it too late in the season? Are they are already in hibernation, even though we haven’t had a deep freeze or a cold snap?” “Any time we have a dry winter, it’s good to water your trees and shrubs,” said Sarada Krishnan, with Denver Botanic Gardens. “You can go for another week the way the weather looks.” She added that if temperatures drop, that’s out of everyone’s control. The trees will suffer then. But in the meantime, Krishnan is correct. Your numbers look good for the next several days…

treedieoff161110Sonora, California, KVML Radio, November 9, 2016: Federal funding to fight tree mortality on private forestland

The USDA is putting up federal funding for private landowners hit hard by the tree mortality epidemic. Property owners 16 Sierra Nevada counties eligible for the program, including Tuolumne, Calaveras, Amador and Mariposa. Non-industrial landowners, with properties at least an acre in size, can apply. The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has initially put up $4-million in funding, and it is available on a competitive process. Applicants with over 20-percent of their conifer forestland property covered with dead trees will receive priority funding consideration. Also, the funding cannot be used to remove trees within 100 ft. of the property owner’s home, as the tree mortality task forces in the local counties are overseeing removal of those hazard trees. Landowners will need to develop a Forest Management Plan for the property. USDA spokesperson Chris Zimny points out, “Fundamentally, NRCS works in coordination with the landowner to produce a plan. It gives the landowner an assessment of what the forest is like and perhaps the natural resource issues on the property. It helps understand what the opportunities are and comes up with a game plan to provide conservation practices for the removal of dead trees…”

Mongabay.com, November 10, 2016: World’s tallest tropical tree discovered, along with nearly 50 other record-breakers

A few months ago, it was announced that there was a new record for the world’s tallest tropical tree: a Yellow Meranti (Shorea faguetiana) found in Sabah, one of the two Malaysian states on the island of Borneo, that stands some 89.5 metres (about 294 feet) tall. But that record was not destined to last long. Gregory Asner of the Carnegie Institution for Science at Stanford University announced at the Heart of Borneo conference today that he had not only found a taller tropical tree, but 50 taller trees. The tallest is a towering 94.1-meter (nearly 309-foot) tree with a canopy that measures 40.3 meters (132 feet) in diameter, discovered in Sabah’s relatively undisturbed Danum Valley. Asner was able to observe the tree first-hand during a helicopter ride on Monday to the remote region. “I’ve been doing this for a solid 20 years now, and I have to say, this was one of the most moving experiences in my career,” Asner told Mongabay. The tree is in the genus Shorea, though the exact species has yet to be determined. Asner and his colleagues also found 49 other trees taller than 90 meters spread all over Sabah, and plan to visit each of them in the coming weeks…

yew161110New York City, Post, November 6, 2016: City rids park of fatal berries after girl’s near-death tale

The city dug up and discarded a toxic bush from Asser Levy playground, two days after The Post reported a 2-year-old girl could have died after sampling a poisonous yew berry there. Parks Department workers blanketed the Kips Bay playground Tuesday and carted off the decorative but deadly shrubs. The removal is just the beginning of a search-and-destroy mission. “In the coming weeks, our horticulture staff will survey the playgrounds and develop a plan to address further,” a Parks Department spokeswoman said. The agency has admitted the city’s 30,000 acres of parks contain “innumerable uncatalogued species…”

New Market, New Zealand, Life Daily, November 9, 2016: Toddlers in critical condition after tree falls on them at daycare

Getting a call from your child’s daycare or school is never a good thing. But when parents started getting calls from a New Zealand daycare center in the middle of the day, they figured that their child had acted up or possibly got sick. Parents were terrified after staff from the Discoveries Educare Daycare explained that at 1:30 in the afternoon, a massive tree had fallen over on the playground where 25 of the 47 or 48 children enrolled at the center had been playing. Luckily most of the children were left unharmed, but unfortunately four had been hit. The staff immediately called for ambulances for the injured toddlers, of which one was in critical condition, one was in critical condition, and the two others had only minor injuries. The rest of the children were ushered inside where they were checked for any other injuries…

airporttrees161109Kingston, Ontario, Whig, November 8, 2016: Tree cutting at airport alarms resident

A west-end resident is concerned with the amount of trees cut down recently on the Norman Rogers Airport property, including some tall, 30-year-old trees near his home. Cam Eckert said he was told at a public meeting in the summer that just a few trees would be cut down or the tops lopped off as part of the proposed airport expansion. His home on Compass Court is adjacent to the airport, near Runway 01-19, which runs in a south-to-north direction stretching from near the Collins Bay Marina in the north to near Lake Ontario in the south. As part of the airport expansion, the runway is to be lengthened from 5,000 to 6,000 feet at a cost of approximately $9 million. Eckert was alarmed when he heard saws cutting wood over the past few days…

 

London, UK, Daily Mail, November 8, 2016: Toddler fighting for life and three other children hurt after tree falls on daycare playground

Four toddlers have been injured, one critical and another in a serious condition after a large tree fell in a daycare centre playground. The children under three years old are believed to have been injured after being struck by the branches of the fallen tree at Discoveries Educare Newmarket in Auckland, on New Zealand’s North Island.The tree fell on the playground equipment trapping bicycles and the slide but luckily none of the 25 children believed to have been in the play area at the time, NZ Herald reported…

illumination161109Chicago, Illinois, Tribune, November 8, 2016: Illumination: Shining light on the value of trees

Don’t think of it as a holiday light display exactly — it’s more of a trek through an interactive winter wonderland. And trees, fittingly, play a starring role. “Illumination: Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum” returns for its fourth year Nov. 18 and glows nightly through Jan. 2. “Fifty acres of the Arboretum’s trees are transformed for visitors as they walk a one-mile walking path,” said Anamari Dorgan, director of education for The Morton Arboretum. “The event features 10 experiences woven throughout the journey.” From Meadow Lake Magic and Tinsel Harmony to Ornament Hill and Symphony Woods, there’s a lot to take in: trees that react to touch and sound, colorful LED lights synced to music, beams of light, and chandeliers hanging in trees, are some examples. Planners hope the woodsy display inspires guests to better understand the beauty and value of trees…

Kalamazoo, Michigan, WWMT-TV, November 8, 2016: Scientists working on project similar to cloning trees

Sierra Nevada is home to some of the biggest trees on earth, but only a fraction of the mighty sequoias are still standing. Scientists say man has cut down more than 90 percent of the world’s ancient trees, and pollution and climate change threaten what’s left. Now, scientists are collecting tips from branches to essentially clone the trees. The trees are being grown in a lab in Michigan until they’re large enough to plant all over the world…

nyctrees161108New York City, Up Out.com, November 7, 2016: NYC street tree map reveals the beautiful urban forest amid the concrete jungle

The highly urbanized city may feel like it doesn’t have a lot of natural elements outside parks, but according to a recent census conducted by the NYC Parks Department, there are 666,134 trees in the city. That is a heck of a lot of natural life, and it’s not by accident—due to sustained efforts to plant more trees in NYC, the amount of them has grown by 12.5 percent since the last time a tree census was taken in 2006. A new street tree map really gives you a sense of how much urban forest there now is throughout New York. There are more than 209 species of trees living throughout New York, with the London Planetree being the most common at 88,301 trees. It’s kind of incredible how many there are and the work they do all around you while you go about your everyday life, and this map makes it easy to see. There are still room for plenty more, too—at least 200,000 additional trees, according to Jennifer Greenfeld, the park department’s assistant commissioner for forestry, horticulture and natural resources. So be kind to your local street trees and maintain them while you can, since they’re working hard to keep the city more breathable and beautiful…

Fumbleboard.com, November 7, 2016: Grow an avocado tree from an avocado pit

Avocados are one of the wonderful fruits of summer. High in nutrition and flavor, nothing signals the start of summer like a zesty lime guacamole dip with tortilla chips. The next time you’re making guacamole or slicing an avocado for a salad, try saving your pits to grow into avocado trees. It’s surprisingly easy to grow your own avocado tree from seed, and it makes a great educational project for home and classrooms. Check out our handy-dandy guide below, complete with photos, to learn how to grow an avocado tree from seed…

elgintrees161108

Atlanta, Georgia, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, November 7, 2016: Residents in Berkeley Lake encouraged to learn about tree removal

In a recent message to homeowners, Berkeley Lake Mayor Lois Salter noted trees as a passionate topic and encouraged residents to become familiar with the city’s tree removal policies. As a city committed to tree preservation, Berkeley Lake has some of the most stringent tree removal guidelines within the county. “The difficulty for our city council is always to find some rule that is a middle way, meeting the needs of people who pay for property to shape their cherished living spaces as they desire, while also honoring in a fair and reasonable way some communal vision for our city,” stated Salter…

Oakhurst, California, Sierra Star, November 7, 2016: State expands tree mortality funding for private landowners

The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in California is expanding its initiative to assist private forestland owners in addressing tree mortality and other drought-related damage to improve forest health. NRCS will provide financial assistance for landowners with dead and dying conifer forest trees in certain counties. Removing dead tree debris and other woody material will also help reduce the spread of invasive pests and reduce the threat of wildfire. “The dry conditions posed by California’s ongoing drought have increased the potential for devastating wildfires and insect-related tree mortality,” said Carlos Suarez, NRCS California state conservationist. “In the upcoming year, NRCS will continue and expand our 2016 forest recovery efforts by initially allocating $4 million for tree mortality projects. We will also provide additional forestry staff to meet the overwhelming demand for assistance.” Landowners with dead trees on non-industrial private conifer forestlands in Madera, Mariposa, El Dorado, Fresno, Kern, Lake, Los Angeles, Nevada, Placer, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego, Tulare and Tuolumne counties may be eligible for financial assistance…

treecensus161107New York, Wall Street Journal, November 6, 2016: Growing tree population keeps City staffers on their toes

The New York City Parks Department’s tree census is out—it happens every 10 years—and the results show the city keeps getting greener. The street tree population increased 13% in the past decade. Queens is the most tree-rich borough with 242,407 of them. This is encouraging news. But I’m most interested and concerned about the health and well-being of the trees on my block. In particular, a tree I pass every day in front of a liquor store on Lexington Avenue in Manhattan that appears both recently planted and all but dead. I was looking forward to bringing the sorry specimen to the attention of Jennifer Greenfeld, the parks department’s assistant commissioner for forestry, horticulture and natural resources, when we got together to walk the neighborhood one afternoon last week…

Columbus, Ohio, WCMH-TV, November 6, 2016: Coroner: Tree falls on tent, killing Boy Scout in Kentucky

A coroner says a Boy Scout has died when a tree fell on his tent during a camping trip in Kentucky’s Red River Gorge. Wolfe County coroner J. Frank Porter tells media outlets that 11-year-old Jack A. Rose was camping with his Boy Scout troop from Louisville when the tree fell Saturday night. Porter says the tree struck the boy in the head, killing him instantly. Two doctors who were camping nearby assisted first responders, but attempts to revive the boy were unsuccessful…

citytrim161107New York City, New York Times, November 6, 2016: How does the City Decide what trees to prune, and when?

Q. Many of the branches of the trees on my Upper West Side block have been cut, presumably for safety’s sake. Ditto my favorite Osage orange tree along the outer loop inside Central Park. Who decides which trees are a safety hazard? And who decides on the amount of cutting?

A. The process of deciding who prunes New York City trees, and when, and why, all starts with a detailed count of the trees, said Jennifer Greenfeld, assistant commissioner for forestry, horticulture and natural resources with the New York City parks department.

“Every 10 years we do a census, with every tree on every street over five inches in diameter counted, so we know exactly how many trees there are, and can factor that into our tree-pruning budget,” Ms. Greenfeld said. This year’s budget is $5.5 million for the 592,130 trees in all five boroughs that were counted in 2005, she said. A census with an updated tree count was conducted in 2015 and was to appear last week; it was expected to include over 600,000 trees. (The census includes only trees that are planted on sidewalks and along streets, not the ones in parks)…

Pasadena, California, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, November 4, 2016: Pasadena ficus trees saga goes back to the courts, as residential group sues city

The fate of three condemned city street trees has returned to the courts. On Friday, the newly formed Save Pasadena Trees group filed a lawsuit against the city and the building owner granted a permit to remove the trees. The 19-page complaint, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court, asks the court to grant a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction to prevent city and/or the business owner from removing the three parkway trees located on the west side of South Lake Avenue, between San Pasqual Street and E. California Boulevard. The group is alleging the city violated its own tree protection ordinance by agreeing in a court settlement in June to grant Rodeo Holdings LLC, owner of the properties from 497-511 S. Lake Ave., a tree removal permit without informing the public through public hearings of its Design Commission and City Council…pepco161104Washington, D.C., WTOP Radio, November 2, 2016: Neighbors band together to save trees from Pepco’s saws

Pepco’s ongoing efforts to improve the reliability of its electric grid often involves removing trees that sit too close to power lines — regardless if neighbors are happy with the end result. “It seems like they’re arbitrarily just taking down trees,” said Agnieszka Traynor, a resident of Berwyn Heights, Maryland, of tree work underway between Edmonston Road and Route 201 just inside the Capital Beltway. “It leaves us very exposed to have the trees all come down.” Multiple arborists are involved in tree removal decisions, Pepco Vice President Jerry Pasternak said while discussing the protocol for removing trees from the public right of way such as along Edmonston Road between Pontiac and Seminole streets. First, a Pepco arborist reviews action plans, then the property owner’s arborist is consulted. “We meet on site with the arborist from the right of way owner — whether it’s the state or the county or the municipality, and those two arborists have to agree on the removal of a tree,” Pasternak said. “If there’s an agreement on that, we then go to the state Department of Natural Resources for them to review. And they need to concur as well in the removal of a tree…”

Savannah, Georgia, WSAV-TV, November 2, 2016: Timberwarriors help some storm victims with free tree removal

Storm damage following Hurricane Matthew, is still evident across the Coastal Empire and Lowcounty. There are a lot of people living with trees leaning precariously over their homes or actually resting on homes, garages, and outbuildings. One disabled veteran’s pleas in Savannah for help with just such lingering storm damage seemed to fall on deaf ears for weeks. That vet called WSAV and was connected with a national tree removal firm working in the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry. Timberwarriors answered Greig Fine’s wish: No cost professional tree removal. “I just can’t tell you how grateful I am. I thought I was gonna lose my she. that tree’s leaning. If it fell I’d probably lose part of my house. I’m just so grateful!” Fine said. That gratitude is for the work a five-man crew performed at Fine’s home on Carmel Avenue Thursday morning. The team with Timberwarriors dealt with tree removal trouble Fine’s has faced since the storm nearly a month ago. One tree rested on a vehicle at Fine’s home, another tree was on his garage, and a third tree, tilted by the winds of Matthew, loomed dangerously towards his home. Timberwarriors took care of the problem and did so at no cost to Fine. F. J. Runyon, the owner and founder of the Timberwarriors network, says cases like Fine’s allows his firm to give back to the storm ravaged communities where they work. “Mr. Fine had contributed and given and made a sacrifice to his community and to his, and to his nation and we would like to give back to him in appreciation for what he’s done and any other people just like him.” Runyon said…

natlxmastree161103Seattle, Washington, Seattle Times, November 2, 2016: US Capitol Christmas Tree cut in Idaho forest

An 80-foot Englemann spruce has been cut down in western Idaho and is heading for Washington, D.C., to be decorated as the Capitol Christmas Tree. Workers used a traditional crosscut saw on Wednesday to bring down the tree on the Payette National Forest near the town of McCall. Cranes prevented the tree from falling, and then positioned it on a semitrailer. The tree will make several stops in Idaho and other states as it travels east. It will be placed on the west lawn of the U.S. Capitol for a lighting ceremony set for Dec. 6…

New York City, New York Times, November 3, 2016: California Today: An invasive beetle threatens state’s Southern Palm trees

South American palm weevils, the button-size beetles, have breached the Southern California border, and they’re hungry. That spells trouble for their favorite meal, the Canary Island date palms that have been one of the region’s most enduring symbols. The weevil larvae feast on a tree’s crown, crippling its growth and, within months, killing it. “I think it will change Southern California’s landscape,” said Mark S. Hoddle, an entomologist at the University of California, Riverside, who has been studying the insects for about six years. Traditionally found in South and Central America, the weevil is believed to have showed up in Tijuana, Mexico, at least six years ago after hitching a ride north of the border. There, its population exploded and percolated into southern San Diego County…

elm161103Boston, Massachusetts, Globe, November 2, 2016: Venerable elm tree finally succumbs to Dutch elm disease

A venerable old elm tree that’s believed to be the largest of its kind in New England has finally succumbed to Dutch elm disease in the Vermont town of Charlotte. The tree was 19 feet 4 inches in circumference and stood 109 feet tall. Dutch elm disease is the fungus that spread during the early 20th century and destroyed most of the elm trees in North America. The tree in Vermont was removed Tuesday. Property owner David Garrett says the tree, estimated at 175 to 200 years old, was a local “monument…”

Fox News, November 2, 2016: Christmas tree growers: Drought not seriously hurting crop

New England Christmas tree growers say the region’s drought is having only minor effects on their crop. New Hampshire-Vermont Christmas Tree Association Executive Director Jim Horst says some seedlings planted in the spring didn’t survive because they didn’t have deep, established roots. Jamie Jones, a sixth-generation farmer in Shelton, Connecticut, says his farm did hand-watering this year to save some younger trees, but full-size trees are in great shape and will be ready for the holidays. He says some extra-large trees also may have some problems. The oldest and youngest trees are most vulnerable to heat. The city of New Haven was forced to harvest a 65-foot tree from a municipal golf course after a donated tree for the city green was found to be too dry…

spruce161103Guelph, Ontario, Mercury-Tribune, November 1, 2016: Rare appeal of tree-removal refusal goes to city council

A south end homeowner who doesn’t like the look of some cedar trees in his front yard will ask council to overrule a city inspector who refused to issue a permit for removal of the trees. The rare appeal, which goes to the Nov. 7 meeting of council’s Committee of the Whole, relates to a private tree bylaw passed by council in 2010 that applies to properties larger than the typical city lot. The property at 115 Dawn Ave. is L-shaped and about 1.65 acres. Thus it exceeds the size of 0.2 hectares, or just under half an acre, that a lot must be to fall under the tree bylaw. The owner’s “aesthetic preference” isn’t a good enough reason to issue a permit for the five cedar trees to be cut down, says a city staff report, which noted the city had agreed to removal of a “dying” pine tree in the front yard…

Greenville, South Carolina, WSPA-TV, November 2, 2016: How to spot weak trees that need to be taken down

When wet snow piles onto the branches or the winds are high, it can cause trees to fall onto the roadways, even on homes. Some trees and branches bring down power lines, plunging thousands of homes into darkness across the region. That’s why it’s important to have any weak trees taken down before winter’s worst. So, how can you tell if your tree needs to come down? Look for splits or cracks. Another good thing to look at, cavities or dead branches on the trees…

worldtrees161102Smithsonian magazine, November 1, 2016: Why Public Health Researchers are Looking to Urban Trees

For all its comforts and conveniences, urban living can be hard on your lungs. Around three million people around the world die prematurely due to the effects of air pollution every year according to the UN, and studies suggest that number could grow to 6.2 million people per year by 2050. Most of these deaths are occurring in China, India and Pakistan, where cities are growing fast—but the problem extends to crowded cities globally, from London to Los Angeles. What if there was a relatively simple, tech-free way to mitigate some of these lung-clogging effects? Public health experts seem to have found a partial solution. Introducing: Trees. A new report by environmental nonprofit The Nature Conservancy lays out how trees could pave the way to cleaner air and cooler cities. Using geospatial information on forest cover paired with air pollution data and population forecasts for 245 cities, researchers found that trees have the biggest health payoffs in densely populated, polluted cities like Delhi, Karachi and Dhaka. The Conservancy and the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group presented the findings of their global survey this week at the American Public Health Association meeting in Denver, Colorado…

Santa Barbara, California, KEYT-TV, November 1, 2016: Water trees not lawns

A crash-course in watering was the lesson at Tuesday’s city council meeting in Santa Barbara, thanks to the city’s arborist along with a surprise drought-related announcement. “We want you to water your trees,” said Josh Haggmark, Water Resources Manager for the City of Santa Barbara. You heard right. After more than five years of drought and countless dead and dying trees, residents are now being asked to protect what’s considered a “significant investment” in our community. “Trees provide a lot of shade, cooling and other things that I think are important in Santa Barbara and important to the look of Santa Barbara and the feel of Santa Barbara,” Haggmark said…

treestreet161102Science magazine, November 1, 2016: Database captures most extensive urban tree sizes, growth rates across United States

Sometimes in the cramped environs of U.S. cities every inch counts, especially if attempting to make space for nature. City planners and urban foresters now have a resource to more precisely select tree species whose growth will be a landscaping dream instead of a maintenance nightmare. The U.S. Forest Service’s Pacific Southwest Research Station recently published a technical manual and launched the most extensive database available cataloging urban trees with their projected growth tailored to specific geographic regions. “Knowing a tree’s maximum size can avoid future conflicts between roots and sidewalks or branches and power lines,” said Greg McPherson, research forester for the Forest Service and lead author of the technical report and database. The products are a culmination of 14 years of work, analyzing more than 14,000 trees across the United States. Whereas prior growth models typically featured only a few species specific to a given city or region, the newly released database features 171 distinct species across 16 U.S. climate zones. The trees studied also spanned a range of ages with data collected from a consistent set of measurements…

Miami, Florida, WTVT-TV, November 1, 2016: Tree gains popularity for medicinal, insect repellant properties

An oversized backyard in Brandon has been transformed into a tree farm, and the owner says hers is one of the largest neem tree farms that will help the semi-tropical tree thrust into the spotlight in the coming years. Vickie Parsons co-owns Neem Tree Farms, which has about 10,000 trees in various stages of life right now. Her interest in the neem tree sprouted out of personal medical needs. “There are more neem trees in this warehouse than anywhere in the country,” Parsons said. “We started growing neem in 1992 because I’m chemically sensitive and it is a very nontoxic pesticide.” She also uses it to treat skin conditions in rescue dogs. But there’s a lot more to this unassuming plant than many might think…

healthtree161101Minneapolis, Minnesota, Star Tribune, October 31, 2016: More trees would give Minneapolis a huge health boost, study finds

Minneapolis already has a lot of trees. But compared to other major U.S. cities faced with rising populations, air pollution and summer heat waves, it would get a much greater bang for its public health buck by planting even more. In fact, in a ranking of how much 32 different cities would benefit from more urban forest, Minneapolis was tied for second place for the greatest impacts on reducing illness caused by air pollution, and third for the reduction in deaths and health risks from heat. “If you want healthier air, trees are part of that solution,” said Rob McDonald, a scientist at the Nature Conservancy who studies urban environments. On Monday he presented his findings from a global analysis of the financial returns to cities from trees at the American Public Health Association annual meeting in Denver…

Seattle, Washington, AP, October 31, 2016: ‘Man in tree’ gets probation through mental health court

Officials say a man who refused to come down from a giant sequoia tree in Seattle will have his charges dismissed if he complies with the terms of his probation for two years. The King County Prosecutor’s Office says Cody Lee Miller was charged in King County’s regional mental health court Friday with misdemeanor assault and malicious mischief charges. But, officials say, if he complies with conditions including mental health treatment and daily medication monitoring, the charges will be dismissed. Miller was originally charged with felonies after he climbed to the top of the tree March 22 and remained there for about 25 hours, ignoring police efforts to coax him down and throwing apples and branches at responders…

treeboard161101Columbus, Georgia, Ledger-Inquirer, October 31, 2016: Who knew the city had a Tree Board?

We’re back in the trees again this week. A gentleman we’ll call Doc lives in the Hilton Heights area and has a problem tree that has been severely trimmed by Georgia Power to keep it clear of the power lines. Doc said he isn’t blaming the power company. They’re just doing what they have to do to keep the lights on. But he’s concerned that the old oak has been trimmed to the point that it’s dying and may become dangerous, if it already isn’t. We talked last week with Robert Watkins of Georgia Power, but we found out that it’s not the power company that determines whether a tree on the right of way is to come down or not. That call is made by the city’s arborists, who work for the Urban Forestry division of the Public Works Department. That’s Pat Biegler’s department, so I called her. “If someone is concerned about a tree (on the right of way) they should call 311 and report it,” Biegler said. “We will send an arborist out to see if it needs to come down. If it needs to be cut down, we put it on the list. “If a tree gets to the point that it jeopardizes people, we will take it down…”

Wisconsin Farmer, October 31, 2016: Preparing trees and shrubs for winter’s common problems

As November arrives, it is time to start taking protective measures to prevent some of the winter season’s common small tree and shrub problems in the yard and garden. Each winter season, gardeners face the challenge of protecting smaller trees and shrubs from weather conditions, as well as from hungry wildlife. Here are some tips on simple things you can do to protect some of your treasured smaller trees and shrubs this season. Many gardeners assume that winter burn is a condition caused by the cold temperatures. However, winter burn can occur even when temperatures are quite mild for the season…

planttree161031Forbes Magazine, October 29, 2016: Why planting trees is never a bad idea

There’s an old proverb that states, “The oak sleeps in the acorn.” Of course, not every acorn ends up becoming a giant oak. However, no one would argue that planting a tree is ever a bad idea. Besides the beauty of watching them grow, trees also help create an ecosystem that provides habitat and food for birds and other animals. Additionally, trees release oxygen and also help absorb carbon dioxide and potentially harmful gasses, such as sulfur dioxide and carbon monoxide from the air. Amazingly, one large tree can supply a day’s supply of oxygen for four people. Fertimig Fertilizantes (Fertilizers) is an example of a business that understands that planting a tree today can pay multiple dividends in the future. The company trades and imports high-quality fertilizers used for crops and eucalyptus planting, while conducting research and development in the fertilizer industry. And as part of its ongoing commitment to a sustainable future, a company-wide environmental project called “Planting the Future” was again recently held at Fazenda Nossa Senhora da Guia, which is located not far from the tree-lined streets of Campo Grande, Brazil…

Quincy, Illinois, Whig, October 30, 2016: Enjoying the final hurrahs of a staple landscape tree

In mid-October, I walked around marveling at the outstanding color of one of our earliest trees to exhibit excellent fall color, the ash (Fraxinus spp.) And I realized, for many homeowners, this might be the last time they can enjoy the spectacular fall display of an ash tree. What I am referring to is the loss of our native ash trees to the emerald ash borer (EAB). For some, this article might seem like a horse leaving the gate before the race has even started, as you probably haven’t seen the likes of this pest in your community. And yet for others, it may be all too late. When EAB is confirmed for a county, ash trees are considered to have a 98 percent mortality rate. One option to keep your ash tree alive is to treat it with systemic insecticides. For homeowners comparing the cost of treating the tree indefinitely with the cost of cutting down the tree, many have opted for removal. So like the chestnut and elm, the ash tree will become more synonymous with a street name rather than a landscape tree. Yes, ash trees are overplanted throughout American cities, but they were selected for a reason. Ash trees perform relatively well in urban and residential conditions, and they have excellent varieties of yellow, red-purple and scarlet fall color…

champtree161031Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, October 31, 2016: Greta’s Don Cruickshanks enters 14 national tree champions on National Register of Big Trees

Whatever Don Cruickshanks does, he does it well.The Greta retiree has grown national champion orchids, and is known as a bit of a celebrity in the orchid world.He was a successful cow cocky for many years.Towards the end of his career, Mr Cruickshanks started work as a cattle manager at Rosemount Vineyard and ended up growing grapes. “I believe whatever you do, you put everything into it,” Mr Cruickshanks said. But it’s his latest venture that is perhaps most impressive. Mr Cruickshanks has entered 14 national champion trees on the National Big Tree register.Trees have always been a joy for Mr Cruickshanks from his work on the land…

Buffalo, New York, Evening News, October 30, 2016: Lancaster trees twinkling again after Pokemon vandalism

Central Avenue’s trees are about to twinkle again in downtown Lancaster after a four-month blackout. Village crews last week put the finishing touches on restringing hundreds of miniature white lights and replacing many on the 20 trees that line both sides of the Central Avenue business district and are usually lit year-round between West Main Street and Pleasant Avenue. And by early November, all the lights in the trees should be functioning. It was not an easy feat after the stretch of Central Avenue went dark in July, as result of vandalism spilling over from the Pokemon Go craze that had followers chasing around the game’s characters in the village near West Main and the Lancaster Opera House. Pokemon Go lovers became so intense that village officials began noticing they were unplugging tree lights so they could charge their phones at the base of the curbside village trees, or even unplugging connections between strings of lights, leaving the trees either dark or just partly lit. Some tree lights were even taken…

sequoia161024Kitsap, Washington, Sun, October 23, 2016: Saving sequoias at root of talk in Bremerton

With each passing year, peaceful coexistence between the city and its landmark sequoia trees becomes a little more difficult. The roadway underneath the two redwoods, on Veneta Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets, buckles more as their roots bulge. And now, following a nearby church’s decision to build a rectory near the towering conifers, city officials fear the trees could be damaged if crews don’t exercise caution in construction. “I’m concerned for the trees,” City Councilman Greg Wheeler said. “They’re a signature of my neighborhood.” Our Lady Star of the Sea Church recently demolished two nearly century-old homes at Fifth and Veneta as it builds a new rectory. The jagged, thick roots of the Sequoias snake out into the surrounding neighborhood and are visible in a planter next to the construction site, about 40 feet from the closest of the two 150-foot tall trees, according to an arborist’s report commissioned by the city. The arborist, Kevin M. McFarland, says in his report that the trees are in good condition and that if the church follows some guidelines during construction, about one-tenth of the tree’s “critical root zone” would be affected…

Arlington Heights, Illinois, Daily Herald, October 23, 2016: Fall’s cool weather suitable for tree planting

Fall is a great time to plant a tree. The soil stays warm much longer than air temperatures. Fall’s cooler and wetter conditions are gentler on tree roots acclimating to their new home. And when roots awaken with spring’s warmth, they have a head start over spring-planted trees. Be sure to start with a healthy tree with roots in proportion to the leaves and no visible signs of injury to the trunk. Choose a variety of tree suitable for the site, factoring in cold hardiness, soil type and moisture levels, light conditions, and appropriate size at maturity. Plant it correctly and give it a little extra attention after planting. A tree’s death is most often a result of improper planting or care in the first couple of months. Follow these guidelines and your tree should live a long life in your landscape…

pinebeetle161024Hinesville, Georgia, Coastal Courier, October 23, 2016: Pine beetles threatening trees again

Many landowners in southeastern Georgia have seen their pine trees die this summer. Even if you were fortunate enough that the pines on your own property were spared, you may have noticed dying pines in clusters deep in the forest, or you may have spotted an individual dying tree in a yard or on the street. If you observed the needles on these trees going from green to yellow to dead in a matter of weeks, the culprit behind these sudden deaths may have been the southern pine beetle. The SPB is a brownish to black beetle that is about the size of a grain of rice. The beetle is a major pest to pine trees in the Southeast. Both adult and larvae SPB chew their way through the tree’s phloem of the tree that moves food from the leaves down to the roots and “girdle” the tree, preventing movement of nutrients. Adult beetles also carry a fungus that clogs the xylem and prevents movement of water. Many beetles attack a single pine at once, overwhelming the tree and leading to its death…

New Castle, Delaware, New Castle News Online, October 23, 2016: Tree of Heaven can seem like spawn of hell

It would be nice if I had an office that you could visit with your plant questions, but I don’t. There is one spot that I could call my office, because I get so many questions there. That place would be on the benches where I sit between the services at First Baptist Church. Last Sunday, my friend Maureen sat down beside me and showed me a photo of some trees that she and Tom have been trying to get rid of. They chop them down every year, but they just keep coming back. The answer was appropriate for the location of the question. The tree she had in question was none other than the Tree of Heaven, Ailanthus altissima…

busstop161021Richmond, Virginia, WTVR-TV, October 20, 2016: GRTC bus rider can’t be seen, thanks to overgrown tree

A tree is blocking a GRTC bus stop, and one rider said the “invisible bus stop” has caused her some issues. The tree has grown over the city sidewalk and brushed up against the power lines. “I’ve missed the bus like four times,” said Teresa Jackson, who said the bus drives right past her because the drivers can’t physically see her, due to this overgrown tree. She said the tree is blocking part of the sidewalk and she can’t risk standing in the street to flag down the bus because it’s too dangerous…

Boise, Idaho, Idaho Statesman, October 18, 2016: Iconic tree will move via system that’s ‘like giant hot dogs’


Work has begun to move Idaho’s largest sequoia tree from St. Luke’s at Avenue B and Jefferson Street to a new site at nearby Fort Boise Park. The 104-year-old tree stands in the way of the hospital’s planned expansion. The hospital has hired Environmental Design Inc., a company whose expertise is moving large trees, to do the job. On Wednesday, work began to dig a trench around the sequoia and prune its roots back to a 20- to 25-foot radius. A barrier will contain the roots. A specialized watering plan will help the roots heal in preparation for the actual move in the spring of 2017. David Cox, co-founder of Environmental Design, said the company has developed a technique that involves building a steel platform to go under the tree once its roots are contained…

deadtree161021Ridgefield, Connecticut, The Wilton Bulletin, October 20, 2016: Leaning tree of Chicken Street

A reader on Chicken Street sent The Bulletin this photo of a dead tree, right, leaning over the road. Employing some geometry, he measured its tilt at 18 degrees. He is hoping it will be taken down before winter weather sends it onto the power lines…

Oakville, Ontario, Beaver, October 20, 2016: Town of Oakville preparing to beef up private tree protection bylaw

Cutting down healthy trees in Oakville may soon become more expensive and difficult. Council voted Monday night (Oct.17) to move forward a proposal to enhance the Town’s private tree protection bylaw. An amendment to the bylaw would require property owners to get a permit if they wish to remove a private tree. They may also be required to plant a new tree as compensation. The proposed changes will come before council for final approval in early 2017 pending Budget Committee approval in December…

treefallinjury161020St. Paul Minnesota, Pioneer-Press, October 19, 2016: St. Paul City Council approves $500K for man struck by 800-pound log outside bar

Delmer Fladwood never saw the 800-pound log careening toward him in St. Paul almost four years ago. The last things he remembers before it hit him on a winter afternoon in 2013 was leaving work, going to a neighborhood bar on West Seventh Street and stepping outside. People had gathered to watch a St. Paul forestry crew cut down a massive tree across the street. Workers had removed the tree’s upper limbs and put them in the street to create a “crash pad” for the tree’s main trunk. But when the tree toppled onto the logs, at least two of them flew across the street, striking Fladwood, then 65, in the legs, according to a lawsuit he filed against the city of St. Paul…

Phoenix, Arizona, KSAZ-TV, October 19, 2016: Burglary suspects pose as tree trimmers, assault couple

“They are scumbags was my first thought and I got to get rid of them.” Linda Norman is talking about two men caught on surveillance video trying to get inside of her home. The same men they say is the reason why her 88-year-old husband, Richard, is all bandaged up. It started out as a typical Tuesday for them last week. “I had a doctor’s appointment and I picked them up from school.” Richard was outside with his walker pulling weeds when two men pulled up and said they needed to trim the trees because of power lines — but there are no power lines near the Norman’s home.”I told them no you’re not gonna trim my tree.”The men went around the back of the home. Video shows them snooping all around the home, knocking on the back door. That’s when they met Linda and their story started changing…

unlawfulcut161020Toronto, Ontario, Star, October 19, 2016: Toronto council calls for crackdown on tree removals

The city’s settlement with a developer who clear-cut 40 trees without approval is outrageously insufficient, says the local councillor calling for a crackdown on tree killers. “This sends the message to developers that illegally cutting trees is a cost of doing business, a slap on the wrist,” said Councillor Jaye Robinson after the parks department revealed a $155,064 fee paid by the Format Group. “I don’t fault (city) staff because this is the system now, but my residents will not be satisfied and people across Toronto will not be satisfied at this cost for a shocking removal of trees, including city trees on city property.” Bayview Ridge residents were enraged in July when the developer bulldozed a heavily treed lot at the corner of Bayview Ave., south of York Mills Rd., without the required approvals under Toronto’s tree bylaw…

Miami, Florida, Herald, October 19, 2016: Tree-trimming company fined $133K over worker’s death

A South Florida tree-trimming company is facing a fine of about $133,600 after federal officials say it failed to prevent a worker’s death. The Miami Herald reports that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced the fine Tuesday. The agency says Fort Lauderdale-based Monster Tree Service didn’t take proper precautions while 34-year-old Anthony Donahue worked around overhead power lines in April. Investigators found that Donahue was using an aluminum pole saw too close to a power line while trimming a palm tree near a Fort Lauderdale home. Monster Tree’s owner, Ray Carolan, says he plans to contest the fine. He says a fiberglass ladder and fiberglass pole saw were at the work site, but Donahue was using metal tools, despite numerous safety meetings…

sfo161019San Francisco, California, Examiner, October 18, 2016: Vote for healthy trees and safe sidewalks in every SF neighborhood

San Francisco, already one of the least-leafy major cities in the U.S., is losing trees faster than it’s planting them. Years of neglect of street trees have resulted in a dangerous environment in which unhealthy trees regularly drop branches or topple altogether, especially during windy or rainy weather. Our sidewalks are also in terrible shape; more than 6,000 of them are cracked, buckled and uneven. Unrepaired sidewalk damage causes dangerous walking conditions, especially for seniors and people with disabilities. Trees are by far the biggest contributors to The City’s broken sidewalks. Trip-and-fall injuries are the top cause of injury-related hospitalizations and death for seniors. Both of these problems are the result of a longtime policy failure that could be corrected in one fell swoop. This failure has provoked public outcry recently, as The City has made budget-based decisions to transfer responsibility for the maintenance of thousands of street trees and sidewalks to the adjacent property owners — many of whom don’t have the knowledge or means to provide such maintenance, and some of whom don’t even realize The City holds them responsible for it. Even prior to this deeply unpopular program of “relinquishment,” tree and sidewalk maintenance has been completely inconsistent: a mish-mash in which The City has maintained some of them and expected homeowners to maintain the others…

Oakland, California, East Bay Times, October 18, 2016: Montclair My Word: Let’s prevent fires but not destroy trees

FEMA’s recent decision to cancel grants to UC Berkeley and the city of Oakland to destroy tens of thousands of trees was a fitting commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the 1991 fire in the East Bay Hills. FEMA’s decision reminds us that the 1991 fire was not caused by trees and that destroying them would not reduce fire hazards. Like most fires in California, the 1991 Oakland fire started in grasses, the very sort of vegetation that would colonize the hills if the trees were destroyed. In 1908, the University of California funded a study that concluded that eucalyptus trees help reduce the risk of fire. It specifically noted that the denser the trees, the lower the risk. It cautioned against thinning the trees, noting that when they are thinned, “their crowns are unable to form a canopy that will shade the ground enough” to stop the spread of highly flammable grasses. Shade is the most benign method of controlling weeds, far less damaging to the environment than the herbicides that are commonly used…

treefall161019Glens Falls, New York, Post-Star, October 18, 2016: Two hurt when tree falls on diners in downtown Glens Falls

Two women suffered minor injuries Tuesday afternoon when a large maple tree fell on the outdoor table where they were eating in the Exchange Street alley. The tree, its trunk about 18 inches around, snapped off about eight feet from its base, the majority of the tree tumbling onto a table where four people were eating lunch. “We’re lucky,” said Andrew Wert, a Connecticut resident who was among the four eating when the tree broke off. “My wife yelled and we were able to jump out of the way…”

Sunbury, Pennsylvania, Daily Item, October 18, 2016: 83-years-old and still trimming trees

George Long filled his pickup truck with one-half cord of firewood Monday afternoon in Middleburg and delivered it to a customer in Coudersport more than 100 miles away the same day. It may not sound like much of a chore unless you know Long has been in the tree service business for 65 years. At 83 years of age, “and a couple of months,” the owner of Apache Tree Service is still cutting down trees, chopping wood and removing tree stumps. “Once I get up the tree, I have it made,” said Long, who prefers to climb with spikes, saddle and rope rather than use a truck bucket…

damage161017Washington, D.C., Post, October 17, 2016: How to find a good tree service

It’s easy to think that trees are among the few great things in life that are free. They increase our property values, provide shade, give us autumn scenery and help create the air we breathe. But sometimes there may be a price. To keep your trees healthy or to get rid of dying ones, you may want the benefit of professional advice, skill and labor. That is especially important as winter approaches. Falling tree limbs can cause great damage to your home. To help you find this help, nonprofit consumer group Washington Consumers’ Checkbook magazine and Checkbook.org have surveyed their members and Consumer Reports subscribers about their experiences with area tree-care services. For the next month, Checkbook is offering free access to its ratings of tree care services to Washington Post readers via this link: www.checkbook.org/washingtonpost/tree-care…

Louisville, Kentucky, WAVY-TV, October 17, 2016: Who’s responsible for fallen tree behind Chesapeake man’s house?

A man contacted 10 On Your Side for help after a tree fell on his fence during Hurricane Matthew, a week ago. A tree line sits behind his property, so he wants the City of Chesapeake to cut it down and fix the damage. However, a city spokeswoman says a city worker went to the home on Monarch Reach Monday, but couldn’t determine who the tree belongs to. “Originally, it didn’t look as bad. I just thought it was a bunch of the bushes and maybe one limb. But once the rain kind of died down about 3 to 4 hours later, I went back out and to investigate the damage,” Karl Shannon said. This isn’t the first time. Shannon says trees from behind his home have damaged his property twice before; once during a snow storm, another time on a windy day…

treetrim161018Hilton Head, South Carolina, Island Packet, October 17, 2016: Cost of tree removal angering homeowners, but no price-gouging charges yet


While some Beaufort County residents have received expensive estimates for tree removal — some reportedly as high as $50,000 — the S.C. Attorney General’s Office has not sought any price-gouging charges statewide in connection with Hurricane Matthew. Contacted Monday by The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette, Hayley Thrift Bledsoe, spokeswoman for Attorney General Alan Wilson, said the office has received a total of more than 350 reports of alleged price gouging in the 14 days since Gov. Nikki Haley declared a state of emergency for South Carolina and the anti-price-gouging statute took effect. But investigating potential offenders could take time, given that the office is still “collecting information” and working with local law enforcement and the State Law Enforcement Division, Thrift Bledsoe said…

Steamboat Springs, Colorado, Today, October 17, 2016: City of Steamboat Springs: Emerald Mountain tree removal project 60 percent complete

City officials are reporting Emerald Mountain is becoming a safer place for bikers, hikers and equestrians thanks to the recent removal of thousands of dead and hazardous trees. But the logging project is running behind schedule. Craig Robinson, the city’s parks and open space manager, told the Parks and Recreation Commission Wednesday the work was 60 percent complete, and the bulk of the hardest work was done. In late September, a helicopter removed close to 1,000 hazardous trees in eight hours…

oak161017New York City, New York Times, October 16, 2016: A 600-year-old oak tree finally succumbs

The locals say that George Washington and the Marquis de Lafayette — the Frenchman who bankrolled the American patriots with cold, hard cash — picnicked in the shade it provided. Rank-and-file soldiers are said to have rested under it, gathering strength before going on to beat the redcoats. It is a huge oak tree, now estimated to be 600 years old. Arborists such as Rob Gillies consider it one of the oldest in North America. It is a local landmark, right there in the cemetery of the Basking Ridge Presbyterian Church. On Thursday, Mr. Gillies sliced into it with a chain saw…

Canton, Ohio, Repository, October 13, 2016: Father of student killed by tree in Massillon park sues city

Is the city responsible for the death of a 21-year old college student killed when a tree fell on her as she walked through a city park? The woman’s father believes so. Brian Schmidt of Bethlehem Township is suing Massillon for recklessness and negligence in the September 2014 death of Rachel Schmidt. The dad is seeking at least $25,000 in damages, according to court papers, and alleges the city failed to properly maintain and inspect the condition of trees located near the walking paths in South Sippo Park, where his daughter, a student at Kent State University at Stark, died two years ago. In addition, he alleges the city failed to watch and detect potential hazards created by rotted or dead trees near the trails. On the afternoon of Sept. 21, 2014, Rachel Schmidt had decided to take a study break and left her Perry Township home to take a walk in the park. She was struck by a large tree that fell across the walking path on the windy day. She died of injuries to her head and body from the impact and sustained internal injuries, according to a Stark County Coroner’s Office report…

fire161017Wildfire Today, October 16, 2016: Hazardous tree on the Emerald Fire

CAL FIRE described this as one of the “many enormous hazard trees on the Emerald Fire. This tree has nearly an eight-foot diameter.” The Emerald Fire burned 176 acres on the south end of Lake Tahoe near Emerald Bay in California when it started on October 14. After being pushed initially by very strong winds gusting up to 55 mph the spread has been stopped by firefighters — and heavy precipitation. The removal of hazardous trees from Highway 89 and around residences is ongoing. Debris continues to impact the roadway due to the high winds and torrential rains…

Daytona Beach, Florida, News-Journal, October 16, 2016: Tree trimmer electrocuted in 5th Hurricane Matthew-related accidental death

A 52-year-old tree trimmer died Friday morning after he was electrocuted while working in a Deltona backyard, authorities said. The man was Arthur Grimes of Osteen, the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office reported. He was unresponsive and taken to Central Florida Regional Hospital in Sanford, where he was pronounced dead, said sheriff’s spokesman Gary Davidson. Friday’s accident marks the fifth death in Volusia County in Hurricane Matthew-related incidents. Davidson said the tree worker was hired by a resident to do work in backyard at 883 Leeward Drive. At some point, witnesses heard Grimes scream and found him slumped in the bucket of a lift, Davidson said. The incident was reported at 10:56 a.m., according to a dispatcher’s call log. The residents shouted at Grimes and banged on the frame of the lift but the tree worker did not respond. At first, the residents thought Grimes had just passed out but paramedics determined the victim had been electrocuted, Davidson said…

chainsaw161014Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, WMBF-TV, October 13, 2016: SC man dies while cleaning up tree debris; HCFR shares how to safely cut a tree

A man in Dillon County is dead after doing what many of you may be planning to do this weekend: cleaning up your yard. Horry County Fire Rescue met with WMBF News reporter Meredith Helline to teach everyone how to safely cut down trees if you plan to do it yourself. First, the fire department highly recommends people hire a professional tree service to remove large trees. Tree removal is a highly hazardous task. However, if you’re determined to do it yourself or have to remove a smaller tree, here are some tips. Cpt. Timothy Rainbolt has been with the fire department for almost 20 years. He’s also part of the wildfire crew, in charge of sawing trees. He said to have the proper gear is a must before you cut. “Safety things we want to stress…which obviously starts with PPE [personal protective equipment] – the chaps I’m wearing right now, Leather gloves, chaps, eye protection, helmet and ear protection I’ll put on when we start to saw,” Cpt. Rainbolt said. He said be sure to survey the area around you. Many times after a storm, stray branches may still be stuck high in trees. With a small wind gust, they can come tumbling to the ground. The fire department calls those branches ‘widow makers’ for a reason. “If they fall and hit you, it’s probably not going to be a very good outcome,” he said…

Charleston, South Carolina, Post & Courier, October 13, 2016: Ladson man arrested on suspicion of stealing more than $43,000 in tree trimming equipment

A Ladson man has been arrested and charged after he allegedly broke into the yard of a tree trimming business Wednesday and stole more than $43,000 in equipment. Justin Heath Chesser, 39, was arrested on suspicion of two counts of grand larceny, and for breaking an entering a locked yard after 6 p.m., said Chief Deputy Mike Cochran, a spokesman for the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office. Chesser was also wanted on probation-related charges at the time of his arrest, Cochran said. He was taken to a state prison in lieu of being booked into the Hill Finklea Detention Center. Sheriff’s deputies were called at 10:55 p.m. Wednesday to Mike’s Tree Service, 134 Crosswatch Drive, in Ladson, according to the incident report…

trucktree161014New York City, DNA Info, October 13, 2016: Tractor-trailer rips up tree on Hell’s Kitchen street, FDNY says

A tractor-trailer uprooted a tree on West 43rd Street Tuesday evening, drawing neighbors and passers-by who stopped to watch as firefighters sawed it apart and removed it piece by piece. The truck was traveling westbound on the street between Ninth and 10th avenues just after 4:30 p.m. when one of the tree’s branches got caught between the tractor and trailer portions of the truck, actor John Michael Bolger, who lives in nearby Manhattan Plaza, told DNAinfo. The truck “lifted the tree straight up” and knocked it over, he said. The FDNY received a call about the truck hitting the tree at 4:41 p.m. Nobody was injured when it fell, a spokesman said…

Morgantown, West Virginia, West Virginia University, October 13, 2016: WVU-led research shows loss of tree diversity could lower global forest productivity, inflicting billions per year of loss in forestry

The world’s forests constitute the most varied and diverse terrestrial ecosystems on the planet, and are home to thousands of species of plants, animals and micro-organisms. A new study coordinated and co-authored by West Virginia University researchers says that conserving these diverse forests not only retains a species-rich environment, but also maintains the forests’ output and services for future generations. The study, which will be published in Science tomorrow (October 14), reveals that biodiversity – the variety of living things on Earth – in forests promotes productivity. In other words, when the number of tree species increases, so does the amount of timber that can be harvested. They also found the opposite to be true – a decline in biodiversity would result in an accelerating decline in forest productivity…

sycamore161013Marietta, Georgia, Times, October 12, 2016: Huge tree worries resident

Nestled near the railroad which used to service Harmar Village, sits a home with generations of memories beneath the looming reach of an ancient sycamore tree. “We moved in with my grandfather when my grandma died,” said Bill Beardmore, 67, owner of 121 Barber St.. “The tree was big then, but now it’s huge.” The tree, though, has become problematic according to residents, who say the city hasn’t done enough to solve the safety issues. Tree commission members say the tree has been inspected and will be again soon…

Oneota, New York, The Daily Star, October 12, 2016: Police: Woman set tree on fire

A local woman has been charged with arson after allegedly setting a tree on fire, Oneonta city police said. Misty Widmer, 32, of Cooperstown, was charged Sept. 29 with fifth-degree arson, a misdemeanor, city police said. She was released on recognizance. Widmer is accused of setting a tree on fire in Huntington Park at about 11:20 p.m. Sept. 3, police said, and someone from the Red Apple convenience store ran across the street with a fire extinguisher and put out the fire. The fire department wasn’t called, police said, and the tree was minimally damaged…

ecolog161013London, UK, Daily Mail, October 12, 2016: Ripped out of the ground and stripped for firewood in seconds: Watch the giant robotic arm that saws through the forest and cuts up a tree trunk in seconds

You could be forgiven for thinking this monster of a machine is the new evil overlord in the next Transformers movie. But the beast is merely a giant robotic arm that turns trees into logs. Still, the enormous machines cuts through the forest with such ruthless and brutal efficiency it would not look out of place as a villainous weapon in the latest science fiction flick…

Memphis, Tennessee, Commercia-Appeal, October 12, 2016: Man killed by falling tree

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after a man was apparently killed by a falling tree Wednesday, officials said. The incident happened a little after noon on property owned by the University of Memphis off Cuba Millington Road, the SCSO said. Darrell VanVickle was clearing trees with his son when the son left for a while. When the son returned, the SCSO said, he found that a tree was on top of his father, who was still behind the wheel of a tractor. The cause of the accident was uncertain Wednesday, the SCSO said…

debris161012Fox News, October 11, 2016: Savannah’s signature tree canopy gets bushwhacked by Matthew

Behind the bronze statue of Revolutionary War hero Sgt. William Jasper clutching a fatal bullet wound in his side, there’s a new casualty in Madison Square — a mighty live oak tree crashed onto the ground, its roots wrenched from the soil with such force they dislodged chunks of a brick walkway. Hurricane Matthew bushwhacked Georgia’s oldest city, leaving arboreal carnage everywhere. A tangle of century-old limbs littered Forsyth Park at the edge of the downtown historic district, while debris carpeted the lanes of Victory Drive where an avenue of palms was planted after World War I. “To see it as trashed as it is, it’s heartbreaking,” said Taylor Henderson, who sat on a park bench Monday in Forsyth Park, where shattered tree trunks and branches cluttered grounds typically kept as neat as a championship golf course. “These trees are so old and they’ve just been uprooted. It’s amazing to think that’s even possible…”

Daytona Beach, Florida, WESH-TV, October 11, 2016: Man falls 50 feet in tree-trimming accident

Cleaning up the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew turned dangerous, yet again. After a man died while cutting trees in Volusia County on Monday, a tree trimmer took a terrifying tumble in Brevard County on Tuesday. Fire officials said the worker was near the Searstown Mall in Titusville when he fell 50 feet from a bucket truck. There’s a lot of tree removal work to be done around Titusville. It’s a risky occupation. Fire department officials said the man was in a bucket truck working to pull a tree upwards, when something gave way and let go. Something hit the bottom of the bucket, causing the man to fall 50 feet to the ground…

treesuit161012Salt Lake City, Utah, Tribune, October 11, 2016: Suit filed against Scouts, Mormon church over death of motorcyclist hit by felled tree in Utah

Family members of a motorcyclist who was killed when a tree cut down by Boy Scouts fell on him as he drove on Utah’s State Route 12 have filed suit over his death.In the lawsuit, Edgar Riecke’s son and two daughters — along with their father’s estate — accuse Boy Scouts of America and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints of negligence. The church chartered the Fruit Heights troop that was cutting and gathering firewood, the suit says. Also named as defendants are the Trapper Trails Council, which the suit says is responsible for overseeing youth and Scout leaders in Kaysville and Fruit Heights; five troop leaders; and the two Scouts, then 14 and 17, who cut down the tree. In addition, the parents of the then-14-year-old Scout are being sued because he has not turned 18, making them responsible for his actions, according to the suit…

New York City, WABC-TV, October 11, 2016: NJ man electrocuted while cutting tree limbs

Authorities say a man who died while cutting tree limbs at a friend’s home apparently was electrocuted. Warren County prosecutors say Sean Loprinzi was on a crane Saturday afternoon when he likely touched an electrical wire with a gas-powered pole saw. But it’s still not clear what may have caused that to happen. The 48-year-old Oxford Township man was taken to a hospital but died there a short time later. No other injuries were reported in the incident…

trimming161011Redlands, California, Redlands Daily Facts, October 10, 2016: How Redlands’ street crew will trim trees more efficiently

The city’s in-house tree trimming crew will get new equipment to assist in maintaining city trees. The city is buying a new wheel loader for $113,698 to replace an obsolete piece of equipment, which is expected to increase efficiency and effectiveness, according to a city staff report. “It’s a great idea,” said Councilman Paul Barich, who is also liaison to the Street Tree Committee, during last week’s City Council meeting. “One of the biggest things that people ask about is tree trimming and this enhances that.” The crew was formed in 2015 using existing parks employees. The city then contracted out various parks mowing duties…

Daytona Beach, Florida, October 10, 2016: Tree removal crew member killed when log rolls on him, officials say

WESH 2 News is investigating a fourth death related to Hurricane Matthew. A worker clearing debris in the storm’s aftermath was killed by a falling tree. It happened at a home on Tano Drive in a neighborhood along Old Dixie Highway.Hurricane Matthew’s mess in Volusia County took the life of a worker cleaning it up. The man was trimming one of the many large oaks that the storm tore from the ground on Tano Drive when some of the debris he was working on toppled onto him, pinning him underneath. A neighbor spotted him and yelled for help. His co-workers removed the log. Someone started CPR, but it was too late…

peanutsxmastree161010Reading, Pennsylvania, Eagle, October 10, 2016: No repeat of Charlie Brown Christmas tree in Reading

Reading Pennsylvania mayor Wally Scott has reluctantly signed off on a plan to erect a 35-foot tall artificial tree to avoid a “Charlie Brown” Christmas tree controversy like one that erupted two years ago. Scott is a fan of natural trees but wanted to avoid the stir caused when city workers erected a scraggly real tree two years ago. The tree was first ridiculed then embraced by residents when it was likened to the scrawny tree featured in “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” The artificial tree will boast 1,250 ornaments, more than 1,900 lights and a 5-foot star…

Hartford, Connecticut, WFSB-TV, October 10, 2016: Tree clearing concerns Gastonbury neighbors

Numerous Glastonbury residents blamed Eversource Energy for cutting down trees in their neighborhood. The company’s plan to strip hundreds of trees is one it said must be done to comply with regulations protecting the power grid. “Their intention is to leave an acre of stumps for me,” Peter Hickey, of Glastonbury, said. For four decades, Hickey has called Johnny Cake Lane his home. In late August, Hickey said he got word that Eversource, which has easement rights for a lengthy space along his property, planned to do some clearing. “They had the right to come into the property and clear-cut,” Hickey said. “And after the work were completed that they would discuss what they would do to restore the property…”

nhp161007Easthampton, New York, Patch, October 6, 2016: Environmentalists express concern over proposed tree clearing at East Hampton Airport

Environmentalists have expressed concerns over proposed clear cutting of 21 acres of forest at East Hampton Airport. A meeting to discuss the issue will be held Thursday night at East Hampton Town Hall at 6:30 p.m. “The East Hampton Environmental Coalition is deeply concerned about the serious disruption of the vegetative cover of our single source aquifer the Town of East Hampton’s proposal for clear cutting of 21 acres of mature forest at East Hampton Airport represents,” a statement read. The group’s membership is “uniformly opposed to this alteration of our woodlands without a scientific analysis of the consequences of this deforestation, without a frank assessment of the presumed benefits to the safety and efficiency of the operation of the airport, and without a balanced assessment of the interests of our citizens in preservation of our natural woodlands versus the expansion of aviation operations at our airport,” said Jim Matthews, EHEC co-chair. Trimming of trees expected to pierce the glide plane for certain types of aircraft was identified in the town’s adopted Airport Master Plan in 2010, although it does not appear on the town’s project list; nowhere in the Master Plan was clearing 21 acres of mature forest anticipated or studied, the group said in a release…

Los Angeles, California, KNBC-TV, October 6, 2016: Old tree planted by Redlands’ founders mistakenly cut by landscapers

People who have lived in Redlands long enough know something huge is missing from the intersection of Orange Street and Citrus Avenue. “This is the first that I’ve seen that it’s gone,” Sharon Cole said. “It’s been lovely shade for people to sit on the corner.” Cole is talking about the Triangle Park oak tree, which has been here for at least 100 years. Last week, workers hired by Frontier Communications mistakenly destroyed it. “It was extremely irresponsible for Frontier to do something like (that),” Jane Myers said. “I am upset about it…”

canker161007New Orleans, Louisiana, WVUE-TV, October 6, 2016: Expert: Citrus bacteria killing trees is ‘slow-moving disaster’

Spread through the rain – and even the wind – citrus canker latches on to citrus trees and slowly eats away at them. “It is sort of taking a toll,” LSU Ag Center horticulturalist Anna Pimmerman said. “It’s a slow-motion disaster.” Citrus canker is a bacteria found on leaves and citrus fruit across South Louisiana. It has zero effect on humans. It’s only cosmetic, and the fruit that trees yield is completely safe to eat. But over time, the bacteria can destroy an entire orchard. “At this point, we don’t have a cure,” Pimmerman said. “We recommend the trees with the disease be removed.” The bacteria has been found in Plaquemines, St. John the Baptist, St. Bernard, Orleans, Lafourche, St. Charles and portions of Jefferson Parish…

New Hyde Park, New York, Herald Courier, October 6, 2016: NHP weighing tree law changes

The Village of New Hyde Park is looking to extensively rewrite its village code governing trees in the coming weeks as it aims to become more tree-friendly. The village Board of Trustees will hold a public hearing Oct. 18 on a new law replacing its current 77-year-old code that will bring it more in line with other local villages, Mayor Robert Lofaro said. “I thought that ours was grossly inadequate,” Lofaro said. Village officials are still finalizing the new law, but it will address in detail topics such as why the village plants trees, which species of trees it allows and regulations and fees for removing trees, Lofaro said…

hurricane161006Richmond, Virginia, WTVR-TV, October 5, 2016: Tree trimmers busy ahead of Hurricane Matthew

“It’ll get pretty again,” said Pat Harden, sentimental over an enormous tree in her back yard. “The last time we had this trimmed, our daughter was married right there, in the middle of that tree, in 2011,” said Harden. She had a change of heart after recent summer storms. “We all woke up the next morning,” she said. “And it was like a war zone. They were uprooted… you know… hundreds of years old trees across the streets… everywhere. You couldn’t get through for a couple of days.” Now, with Hurricane Matthew in the headlines, locals have been proactive – though the latest track indicates Richmond is clear of its path…

Grand Rapids, Michigan, WWMT-TV, October 5, 2016: Three Rivers man falls to his death while trimming tree in Schoolcraft

A Three Rivers man fell to his death while trimming a tree Monday, in Schoolcraft. Newschannel 3 spoke with family members and the Kalamazoo County Sheriff, to find out what they say caused the victim to fall. Ron Phillips ran Phillips Tree Service with his family. Witnesses say while he was up in the tree, they heard a snap and a scream. Phillips died suddenly Monday, when deputies say he was knocked to the ground. “He was about 55 feet in the air. At some point one of the limbs he was working on or near had made the bucket tip, and he fell out of the bucket,” said Kalamazoo County Sheriff Richard Fuller…

climate161006UPI, October 5, 2016: Tree growth slows as cities heat up

There’s evidence that global warming is having a “greening” effect on large portions of the planet. And some scientists have suggested an uptick in carbon will encourage photosynthesis — for better or worse. But that’s not case in cities, new research shows. When scientists at North Carolina State University tracked tree growth throughout the city of Raleigh, they found urban warming curbs both tree growth and photosynthesis. They also found pests, including scale insects and spider mites, were more abundant among trees at warmer sites. Over the course of two years, researchers measured tree trunk and branch growth, as well as photosynthesis rates, of 40 willow oak trees, Quercus phellos. Scientists found a strong correlation between pest populations and temperatures. The warmer it got, the more insects invaded. But their measurements prove rising temperatures curtailed the growth of city trees with or without pests…

Seattle, Washington, Times, October 5, 2016: Take a fall drive to hunt for golden larches on forest roads above Blewett Pass

When people think about scenic drives to see fall colors, it’s often the East Coast that comes to mind. But here in the Pacific Northwest we have something special to brag about: the Western larch. It’s an oddity, as one of the few cone-bearing trees that sheds its needles in winter. For a short time in the fall — usually around mid-October — larches turn brilliant yellow, dotting the high mountains with intense bursts of color that seem to glow in the sun. Hunting for these trees at the height of their turn is an annual rite for many in our region — a tradition known as the Larch March. What’s so addictive is the thrill of the hunt. Larches are usually found in small pockets above 5,000 feet east of the Cascade crest. They will change at different rates at different elevations, and early winter storms can erase whole groves of color in a single day…

seattlecutting161004Seattle, Washington, The Guardian, October 4, 2016: Seattle homeowners accused of felling 150 trees on public land for a better view

Settling into homes with gold-plated views is the goal for many who come to West Seattle. And so headlines blared when residents learned that some neighbors, seeking a better view than they already had, had hacked down more nearly an acre and a half of trees along a public greenbelt. The unpermitted choppings on the city-owned West Duwamish Greenbelt – which is prone to landslides and relies on trees to stabilize the soil – destroyed more than 150 big-leaf maple trees and Scouler willows. As fall begins, a riot of rotting log carcasses and gnarly moss-draped limbs are still strewn about the site. There are deep pockmarks, too, and gashes left by the wholesale clear-cut. The discovery in March by a team of city investigators sparked outrage. One anonymous commenter, reported The Stranger, suggested the city “chop the [culprit] to pieces and see how it feels”. Now, Seattle city attorney Pete Holmes has filed civil suits against several couples who police say were involved in the tree-cutting caper, seeking an unprecedented $1.6m in damages and fines…

Total Landscape Care, October 4, 2016: Ever wonder how much a tree is really worth?

Trees have been given credit for bettering the environment and society in many different ways, and now there is a way to put an estimated price on these benefits. Davey Tree Expert, Casey Trees, the Arbor Day Foundation, the U.S. Forestry Service, the Society of Municipal Arborists, and the International Society of Arboriculture all joined in a cooperative initiative known as i-Tree. As part of that initiative, Davey Tree Expert and Casey Trees created a national Tree Benefit Calculator. This allows individuals to evaluate the trees on their property and become aware of all the ways they’re helping. Users simply enter their zip code or the location of the tree they are estimating, the species and the diameter to receive an estimation of economic value of the tree along with a breakdown of its different environmental benefits. For example, a black oak with a 30-inch diameter oak tree at a single family home will provide around $270 benefits a year. It can intercept 11,264 gallons of stormwater runoff a year with its root system and conserve 247 kilowatt-hours of electricity for cooling. It will also be able to absorb 1,113 pounds of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere…

michigantree161005Kalamazoo Gazette, October 4, 2016: South Haven re-evaluates tree cutting plan, spares 7 old trees

The felling of trees in South Haven begins the week of Oct. 3 as the city begins its North Shore Drive upgrade. But after some people decried the felling of many old trees, city officials and consultants did a walk-through with residents and reevaluated the plan, city engineer Larry Larry Halberstadt said. The upshot– instead of cutting 30 trees, it is likely the city will be removing only 23, which includes 11 found to be too diseased or damaged to salvage, he said. The felling of trees in South Haven begins the week of Oct. 3 as the city begins its North Shore Drive upgrade. But after some people decried the felling of many old trees, city officials and consultants did a walk-through with residents and reevaluated the plan, city engineer Larry Halberstadt said. The upshot– instead of cutting 30 trees, it is likely the city will be removing only 23, which includes 11 found to be too diseased or damaged to salvage, he said…

Bountiful, Utah, Davis County Clipper, October 4, 2016: Sidewalk damage may lead to loss of Centerville trees

City officials may have to decide which is more important – safe sidewalks, or city trees. The Centerville City Council is holding an open house Oct. 5 from 6-8 p.m. at Centerville City Hall to share the results of a citywide sidewalk survey performed this past summer. The survey identified hundreds of damaged sidewalks throughout the city, raising the issue of whether the city should remove the trees from park strips and other areas that are damaging the sidewalks in the first place. “It will be a touchy issue,” said Centerville City Manager Steve Thacker. “I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love trees.” He added that the council plans to start a long discussion period, both among themselves and with the public, about what to do with the tree issue and how to fund the sidewalk repairs that will cost at least $500,000. The Oct. 5 meeting, however, isn’t the beginning of that discussion – it will focus exclusively on informing residents about the survey and the results. “We’ve been concerned for the last few years that we haven’t been able to keep up with sidewalk defects in the city,” said Thacker. “Our insurer has also encouraged us to become more active in addressing vertical defects in the sidewalks…”

treeremoval161004Nassau, New York, Newsday, October 3, 2016: Tree cutting on Glen Cove hillside for condo development halted

Livingston Development Corp. has agreed to stop cutting down trees on part of the Glen Cove property it is developing for luxury condominiums until a lawsuit that aims to halt the project is resolved. A tree-removal company hired by Queens-based Livingston chopped down about 50 trees on a hillside south of downtown until Nassau County State Supreme Court Judge George Peck on Sept. 13 ordered a stop to the tree removal until he could rule on a request for a preliminary injunction against the tree-cutting. Roni Epstein, a plaintiff in the lawsuit against the project, had asked for the injunction. She and fellow plaintiff Marsha Silverman live above where the trees were being cut down. Their attorney, Amy Marion, argued the permit the city issued for the tree removal is not valid…

CBS News, October 3, 2016: Visitor to New Mexico national monument killed by falling tree

Authorities at New Mexico’s Bandelier National Monument say a female park visitor has been killed by a falling tree. Park rangers were notified of the incident about 2:30 p.m. Monday. Rangers responded to the scene along with the Los Alamos County Fire Department and the Los Alamos County Police Department. It’s not immediately clear what cause the tree to fall…

ada161004Santa Clarita, California, Signal, October 3, 2016: City tree cutting angers Canyon Country resident

The resident of a “beautiful tree-lined” street in Canyon Country was moved to anger Monday morning when he saw city crews cutting down two towering pines near his home. City officials said they removed the trees on Ermine Street for safety reasons since the roots of the pines were lifting up the sidewalk and part of an “ADA ramp” – a wheelchair access ramp built according to the standards set out by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. For Gary Marshall, however, who lives across the street on Ermine west of Whites Canyon Road, the removal diminishes the character of the neighborhood. “Our beautiful tree-lined drive has two less trees and is now down to less than a dozen trees,” he said. “This is wrong, and it makes the neighborhood look like hell…”

Ardmore, Pennsylvania, Main Line Media, October 3, 2016: Landscaping plan for Gladwyne property OK’d despite illegal removal of trees

Lower Merion Board of Commissioners gave final approval last week to a revised landscaping plan for a Gladwyne property despite about two dozen trees being improperly removed. The move followed a lengthy discussion at the Sept. 14 Building and Planning Committee meeting during which some of the commissioners expressed their concerns as to why trees on the original plan were taken out. During the discussion, Ross Weiss, attorney for property owner Billy Cunningham, said the issue was being blown out of proportion by the township. The discussion began at the Building and Planning Committee meeting when Chris Leswing, assistant director of Building and Planning, explained the project was originally approved by the township about five years ago. “As construction commenced on the project, there were some trees that were originally proposed to stay [that] were removed,” said Leswing. He described the area as heavily wooded and when the contractors went in to do the work, approximately 20 trees that should have been kept were cut. “To the applicant’s credit, while they did remove 24 trees they were also in that process able to save four trees that were proposed to be removed. So the net is 20 trees,” Leswing said…

 

ashtreeborer161003Parkersburg, West Virginia, News & Sentinel, October 2, 2016: Monongahela Power removing ash trees to help prevent outages

Thousands of ash trees damaged by the emerald ash borer located near power lines and other equipment are being removed by Monongahela Power to help prevent electric service interruptions and enhance system reliability for customers. Tree crews have taken down nearly 16,000 dead and dying ash trees at a cost of nearly $2 million in the Mon Power service area, which includes Wood and surrounding counties, so far this year. Ash tree removal is part of Mon Power’s overall $63 million enhanced vegetation management program for 2016, which includes plans to trim trees and control vegetation to help maintain proper clearances along nearly 4,400 miles of distribution and transmission lines throughout the company’s service area, with nearly 2,800 miles completed year-to-date.“Ash trees pose a growing risk to our electric system as they quickly succumb to the emerald ash borer and have the potential to fall and damage our power lines, utility poles and other equipment,” said Holly Kauffman, president of FirstEnergy’s West Virginia Operations. “We are addressing this problem proactively and aggressively by removing the damaged ash trees before they disrupt electric service to our customers…”

San Francisco, California, Chronicle, September 30, 2016: Dianne Feinstein: Feds should cut 5.5 million dead trees in state

After five years of punishing drought, I am more fearful than ever that increasingly destructive and unpredictable fires will exceed our capacity to put them out quickly and protect the lives and property of Californians. And the odds are high that the state will continue to grapple with extreme fire seasons long after the current drought ends. During my travels in California, I have seen firsthand the enormous number of trees that have been killed by drought and bark beetle infestations. The U.S. Forest Service estimates that there are 66 million dead trees on our state’s public lands, half of which are concentrated in the Sequoia, Sierra and Stanislaus national forests. The lack of water, combined with the proliferation of tree-killing beetles that thrive in dry conditions, has created a tree mortality crisis unlike any we’ve seen in recent decades. But this growing public-safety threat has not received the attention or resources it deserves. That needs to change…

treescam161003Des Moines, Iowa, WHO-TV, October 2, 2016: Des Moines residents warn of tree scammer

Numerous residents of the Metro are speaking out after they say a tree trimmer scammed them, taking off before the job was done and cashing the check before they could stop him. Dawn Solis Toledo is the latest to claim Eric Mitchell, of Residential Services, agreed to cut down some dead trees in her yard, only to cut out before the job was done. “So, we had these four giant trees laying in the grass, so we had to get them cut down by ourselves,” she said. “So yeah, pretty crappy.” Solis Toledo says Mitchell stuck a flyer in her door, advertising his services. Originally quoting the job to cut down seven trees at $2,500, he quickly negotiated down to $600 when Solis Toledo says she and her family weren’t interested…

Pueblo, Colorado, Chieftain, October 2, 2016: Hit or myth? Aspen spawn some tree-mendous tales

Tales of the aspen tree’s magical and mystical properties have been told by cultures around the world. The ancient Greeks believed that the aspen (a different species from North America’s aspen, but aspen nonetheless) was sacred to Persephone, daughter of the goddess Demeter, who was carried off by the lord of the underworld. Persephone rose from the kingdom of the dead each spring only to return to the netherworld in autumn with the coming of the cold. It was said that warriors and heroes could gain her protection by wearing a crown of aspen leaves. The Celts also believed in the protective properties of aspen, crafting battle shields from its wood and planting aspens in fields and gardens to ward off thieves. Some Native Americans say that the leaves of the aspen first began to tremble because of a chief’s tender feet. When his braves became careless about unrolling a protective mat of reeds for their leader to walk on, the chief cut his tootsies on sharp fragments of stone discarded by tribal members who had been chipping arrowheads. His cries of pain so frightened a nearby aspen that the trees have been quaking ever since…

yorktowntree160930Yorktown, New York, TAPInto.com, September 29, 2016: New Yorktown tree law approved despite resistance

For more than two hours, speakers at last Tuesday’s Town Board meeting weighed in on the proposed tree ordinance, with the night’s last speaker urging council members to consider the comments and revise the law accordingly. With a few exceptions, they didn’t, approving the law only minutes later by a 4-1 vote. After the meeting, Tree Conservation Advisory Commission member Dale Saltzman characterized the board’s actions as “pitiful.” Supervisor Michael Grace, however, said the Town Board called for the public hearing only after fine-tuning the law at several lengthy work sessions. Present at the sessions was a drafter of the original 2010 law, which the board repealed, and the chair of the tree commission

Lexington, Kentucky, WKYT-TV, September 28, 2016: Police Looking For Men Selling Bad Trees

Police are on the lookout for two men selling trees from the back of a truck. Several of the duo’s customers In Clark County are out hundreds of dollars and are stuck with dead or dying trees. Charles Fuller told LEX 18 that the Evergreens he bought lasted three weeks. He said in early August, two guys showed up in a pick-up truck with left-over trees from another project. He bought seven trees for about $400. The trees were guaranteed for two years. “The business card they gave me had a number scratched out and someone answered on that one, and they were not very friendly they cussed me out and told me to call the Casey County Sheriff Office,” said Fuller…

wtreeworker160930Milwaukee, Wisconsin, WITI-TV, September 29, 2016: “We can never get enough people:” Wisconsin’s tree care industry needs more skilled workers

Wisconsin’s tree care industry needs more skilled workers, and now, the state is getting involved to help. Employers say there are plenty of jobs to be had, but they need qualified employees to apply. Luke Volbrecht didn’t know he wanted to be an arborist — but he always had a passion for the outdoors. “As a child, my parents had a garden and I enjoyed being outside — camping, fishing,” said Volbrecht. He admits he had misconceptions about the industry… “I thought it was a forestry logging-type career. There is more to it than just cutting down trees,” said Volbrecht…

Opelika, Alabama, News, September 29, 2016: Updyke still owes nearly $794,000 in Auburn tree poisoning

While Auburn University deals with the aftermath of last weekend’s tree fire at Toomer’s Corner, it continues to receive minimum monthly payments of $100 from Harvey Updyke for poisoning the original oaks in 2010. After Updyke pleaded guilty to the crime, Circuit Judge Jacob A. Walker III ordered Updyke to pay $796,731.98 in restitution in 2013 to help the university replace the trees and make up for lost revenue due to their removal. A representative at the Elmore County Clerk’s Office told AL.com Wednesday that Updyke still owes $793,852.98, meaning he has paid off just 0.361 percent of the balance. He made payments of $100 every month in 2016 except in June and August. He made a double payment in September, so is behind by one. With court costs and legal fees added in, Updyke currently owes $813,378.48 in total. He is on supervised probation after serving six months of jail time for the crime and has an upcoming hearing Oct. 18…

Sacramento, California, Capital Public Radio, September 29, 2016: Placer County to pay $3 million to remove beetle-infested trees

Placer County has approved the removal of 1,800 trees that are dead or dying from a bark beetle infestation. The county will pay about $1,700 per tree or a total of three million dollars. John McEldowney with the Placer County Office of Emergency Services, says the trees will be removed to reduce fire risk. “We’ll probably end up hiring tree-removal companies -contractors to come in and cut them down and either haul them off, take them away to a storage location or some other facility to be determined or possibly chipped on site depending on what’s the best situation, the best use of the material for the county…”

notice160929Weston, Connecticut, Forum, September 28, 2016: Notice of removal posted on Norfield Tree in Weston

Weston’s tree warden Bill Lomas posted a notice of removal for the Norfield Tree on Monday, Sept. 26. Once the notice is officially posted, state ordinance says there is a 10-day period where the public can write to Lomas and object to the removal of the tree. Lomas will be receiving objections until Thursday, Oct. 6. After that 10-day period, a public hearing will be set up where Lomas will give full details of his assessments of the tree and give time to the public to present their objections. Lomas will weigh objections, both presented at the meeting and written, into his final decision.Three days after the hearing, Lomas will make the ultimate decision on whether the tree will come down…

Recycled Things, September 28, 2016: Recycled tree trunks

Can anyone think that tree trunks can be transformed into beautiful things and crafts? Well, we are here to show you that! You can now reuse and recycle tree trunks to craft good-looking projects. The ideas and concepts are a little bit complicated and tough as well as hard work is required. You must have the right tools to make these crafts and things. If you are new to deal with tree trunks then you must have guidance from a carpenter or wood worker. These are ecological ideas and also cost-effective. Many of you would like and adore our concepts. Can anyone think that tree trunks can be transformed into beautiful things and crafts? Well, we are here to show you that! You can now reuse and recycle tree trunks to craft good-looking projects. The ideas and concepts are a little bit complicated and tough as well as hard work is required. You must have the right tools to make these crafts and things. If you are new to deal with tree trunks then you must have guidance from a carpenter or wood worker. These are ecological ideas and also cost-effective. Many of you would like and adore our concepts…

bigtree160929Clarkeville, Tennessee, The Leaf-Chronicle, September 28, 2016: Clarksville Tree Board asks ‘who’s got the biggest tree’

The Clarksville Tree Board is happy to announce that they are starting a “Big Tree” contest, previously known as “Champion Tree”. The contest aims to involve the public in developing our large tree inventory, while raising awareness of the benefits trees provide to our area. Trees reduce air and water pollution and help increase the beauty and livability of our community. The winner of the contest will be awarded a Certificate from the City Forester and/or the State Forester, as well as bragging rights. There will be a winner awarded for each species of tree nominated. Example of the species can be found on the nomination form located on the Clarksville Tree Board’s Facebook site…

Gardeners World, September 28, 2016: Six ways to help trees and shrubs establish quickly

When planting a new plant, it’s important to follow some key rules if you want them to survive and establish well. The aim is to get new roots to grow as quickly as possible so they can support the leaves, shoots and flowers at the top of the plant during the growing season. Roots are able to grow underground in the winter, even when the top growth is dormant. Watch our No Fuss Guide to planting shrubs. The dormant season (from November to March) is a great time to plant pot-grown and bare-root trees, as long as they are fully hardy and deciduous. If they are borderline hardy or evergreen, wait until late April or May, when there is less risk of severe frost. Whatever the time of year, avoid planting in extreme conditions, such as very cold or very hot weather. Mild, damp conditions are best. When digging the planting hole, make sure that it is deep enough to accommodate the roots comfortably and at least 10cm wider all the way around the rootball. Use a border fork to loosen the base and sides of the hole to allow the roots to grow into the surrounding soil. As you back fill the hole with compost, firm it down gently with your foot…

oak160928Lafayette, Louisiana, KATC-TV, September 27, 2016: Live oak tree in Mire cut down

A decades-old live oak tree in Mire, considered by many to be a landmark, has been cut down. The tree used to cast its shade along Hwy. 95. DOTD spokesperson Deidra Druilhet said, “Based on examining the tree, one of the things that we recommended was to basically prune the tree, prune back some of the branches from over the roadway for safety reasons. Over a week ago, DOTD received complaints about the tree being a safety hazard, officials with the department said…

Denver, Colorado, KMGH-TV, September 27, 2016: Fruit tree harvest amid Colorado bear season

Winter is coming, and hungry bears are scrounging around trying to prepare — and ripened fruit is on their list. Boulder County authorities are warning those with fruit trees to be mindful of the animals. The fruit is just beginning to ripen as Colorado’s bear season kicks off. Bears love fruit and are looking for an easy food source as they prepare for hibernation. Boulder Police tweeted that residents should pick the fruit before the bears begin to wander into the neighborhood. Fruit Rescue in Boulder organizes neighborhood harvests of public and private fruit trees. The group was harvesting apples near Palo Park in Boulder Tuesday…

saw160928Hobby Farms, September 27, 2016: The tools you need for trimming trees

I won’t try to deny it—I love trimming trees. I always enjoy the process of carefully pruning branches to give trees a beautiful, stately and clean appearance, and I love how trimming just a handful of trees can completely transform an area, giving it a much more manicured look. If you have trees on your farm—or better yet, a wooded area on the edge of your fields—you might be amazed at how rapidly you can upgrade the appearance of your trees by pruning off their messy lower branches. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend that you dive in and get started, but first, here’s a checklist of items that you’ll want to have on hand…

Ashtabula, Ohio, Star-Beacon, September 27, 2016: Conneaut tree commissioner resigns in dispute over Malek Park

The president of the Conneaut Tree Commission resigned at Monday night’s City Council meeting, blaming the city for the lack of upkeep at its largest park. Rod Raker, who has served on the tree commission for more than 20 years, recently sought volunteers willing to tackle the weeds at the Dorothy Shumake Arboretum inside Malek Park — a place he’s spent much time and money. Before the meeting began, Raker gave a three-page letter to each member of City Council describing his frustration with city officials. Before the meeting, Council President Nic Church told Raker he would not allow him to “criticize me, City Council or the manager” during the meeting. Raker called it “constructive criticism…”

pinetree160927Los Angeles, California, Times, September 26, 2016: Family fights to get ‘nuisance’ pine tree removed

The 55-foot culprit with its stocky trunk lurks high above the block wall separating their home from a neighborhood park in Eastside Costa Mesa. It makes a sticky mess of their backyard, kills their plants and destroys thousands of dollars worth of patio furniture. It’s even a potential threat to their children, they insist. The culprit’s name is Pinus canariensis, more commonly known as the Canary Island pine. It’s endemic to the outer Canary Islands, but this particular pine has put down 30-year-old roots in Jordan Park. And, following a decision reached Thursday by the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission, that’s where it will continue to grow for the foreseeable future. But for Jonathan and Michelle Knox one word sums up their thoughts about the pine: nuisance…

AL.com, September 26, 2016: uburn horticulturist provides early assessment of scorched tree at Toomer’s Corner

The fire endured by one of the young oak trees at Toomer’s Corner late Saturday night in Auburn has left the fate of the plant and the tradition of rolling it up in the air. Auburn University professor of horticulture Gary Keever told reporters on Sunday that the damage goes beyond the tree itself. “The fire melted the vertical (irrigation) piping that runs up the trunk,” Keever said. “That’s going to replaced beginning tomorrow. There’s about 180 feet of drip irrigation too that circles around the base of the tree inside the low fence that’s going to be checked out. A replacement vertical pipe is going to be put in the canopy and we’re going to continue to use between 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. to cool the canopy of the trees.” The fire occurred after Auburn’s 18-13 win over LSU Saturday night when a man walked up to the tree facing W. Magnolia Ave. and lit a piece of toilet paper on fire. Auburn police later arrested 29-year-old Jochen Wiest on charges of desecration of a venerable object. The case is still under investigation…

sparty160927USA Today, September 26, 2016: Michigan State campus toppled tree at least 350 years old

A massive white oak tree that fell in a summer thunderstorm stood tall for close to 200 years before what is now Michigan State University began growing up around it. The toppled tree is likely 350 to 400 years old. Every person to ever visit campus could have walked by the massive tree, said Frank Telewski, a plant biology professor at Michigan State University. “It’s amazing when you think about it,” he said. It could have first sprouted before the Pilgrims landed on Plymouth Rock in 1620. A small portion of the centuries-old tree remains between the Michigan State University Museum and Linton Hall in the West Circle area of campus. It previously shaded a stone water fountain dedicated by the class of 1900, which served both humans and the horses they rode to campus. Before that, Native American tribes occupied the land around what is now West Circle, Telewski said…

Edmonton, Calgary, Herald, September 26, 2016: Research could help forestry industry ‘pick trees that will do well in future climates’

An international study, which includes a researcher from the University of Calgary, has found that two trees in Alberta and British Columbia use the same genes to adapt to different climates — a discovery that could have practical applications for the forestry industry. The research, published Friday in the journal Science, studied lodgepole pine and interior spruce to determine which genes helped the trees adapt to varying climates throughout the two provinces. “We sequenced genomes from many different species across the ranges,” said Sam Yeaman, an assistant professor in the U of C’s faculty of science who’s a co-author on the study. “We found that there were about 47 genes that were specifically helping these trees adapt to their environment in both pine and spruce. “There were other genes that were involved that were unique to one or the other, but seeing the same 47 come up over and over again was really surprising and interesting…”

toomer160926Auburn, Alabama, Ledger-Enquirer, September 25, 2016: Suspect Jochen Wiest arrested in burning of Auburn oak tree

Police in Auburn, Ala. have arrested a suspect in the burning of an oak tree at Toomer’s Corner. According to a police report, the suspect is a 29-year-old Auburn man, Jochen Wiest, who is not affiliated with Auburn University. He was taken to the Lee County Detention Center and has been charged with desecration of a venerable object. His bond has been set at $1,000. It was at 12:15 a.m. Sunday when Auburn police and fire divisions were sent to the intersection of West Magnolia Avenue and College Street because toilet paper was burning on one of the oak trees following an Auburn football victory over LSU. Within minutes the fire was extinguished…

New York City, New York Post, September 25, 2016: Couple rips de Blasio for empty promise to help after their tree was cut down

Thanks for nothin’, Mayor. An East Village couple is furious that heedless contractors working on a condo building next door mistakenly chopped down their beloved, six-story-tall backyard Norway Maple — and they say Mayor de Blasio only added insult to injury with an empty promise to help. Alexander Poma, 50, and Leslie Steven, 60, of East Seventh Street, say they got a bureaucratic runaround from the NYPD, Parks Department and Department of Buildings before dialing into the mayor’s call-in show on WNYC Friday to complain about the blunder by a subcontractor of L&M Development, which is building a high-rise next door. On the show, the mayor personally promised to help them. “I did get a call from the Mayor’s Office from someone who didn’t understand the problem,” Steven said. “She said, ‘I’m glad your electricity is back up.’ ” Replacing the tree would cost $150,000, Steven said an appraiser told her…