Wednesday, September 30, 2009

City looks to increase UTC from 25% to 45% - NJ Cool Cities grant will help; Wood-ridge, NJ

Leader Newspapers:
By Colleen Reynolds / Reporter

WOOD-RIDGE (Oct. 1, 2009) — Satellite imagery reveals Wood-Ridge to be one of the greener municipalities in The Leader coverage area, but it is about to get much leafier.
The borough recently won a Cool Cities Initiative grant from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Division of Parks and Forestry and the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities. The grant will help pay for the planting of 75 mature shade trees on publicly-owned land throughout the 1.1-square-mile municipality. The planting is expected to take root Nov. 10, 11 and 12, depending on weather and site conditions.
“The real benefit of this is to provide tree canopy,” said George Meglio, chair of the Wood-Ridge Shade Tree Commission.
State surveys indicate that the borough has a forest cover of only 25.5 percent, a figure low enough to qualify for the grant, Meglio said.
Although he noted that adding 75 trees to the current borough inventory of approximately 3,500 is a small percentage increase, it is an admirable start.

Rotarians dig in to restore tree line damaged by vandals; Courtenay, Canada

Rotarians dig in to restore tree line:

Comox Valley Echo
September 29, 2009

Volunteers were out in force on Saturday morning putting right a trail of damage caused by vandals along Lerwick Road.
Members of Courtenay Rotary Club dug up and replaced 32 trees that were broken over the September long weekend.
The volunteer effort was a display of civic pride the City of Courtenay hopes will send a message to the culprits.
'We're really grateful to Courtenay Rotary for doing this,' said Courtenay Mayor Greg Phelps.
'It's not just about the labour. It's symbolic to have community volunteers coming together to replant these trees. It shows that we as a community won't stand for this type of behavior.'

Seattle mayoral candidate calls for UTC goal, green jobs creation; Seattle, WA

Mallahan: Make Seattle greener:
Joe Mallahan, running against former Sierra Club leader Mike McGinn for Seattle mayor, on Monday released his environmental goals.
'I am committed to continue leading Seattle forward so we can be the premier city for environmental protection and innovation in North America. That means enacting creative, outcome-based strategies to protect Puget Sound, to create an open and accessible waterfront, to achieve and exceed the Kyoto climate goals, to improve transit options, to enlarge Seattle's forest canopy, and to generate family-wage, green-energy jobs,' Mallahan said in a statement.

Also covered in:

Monday, September 28, 2009

Amazing Tree Quest finds remarkable trees, but one massive contender is lost in recent storm; London, Ontario, Canada

London Free Press - Local News- Tree contest dampened by loss of two winners:
Sat, September 26, 2009

Winners of 11 categories were announced yesterday

A contest that celebrated London's claim to the forest city moniker has shown how tenuous that connection has become -- one of 11 winners fell in a summer storm and a second was damaged by a city hall mishap.
Reforest London yesterday announced the winners of its Amazing Tree Quest, an effort that has drawn praise from environmentalists and the city's urban forester.
But only the shell of a trunk remains of a massive tree that garnered the most votes of support -- 82 -- and won the people's choice award.
The cottonwood tree fell during a storm from its sentinel position overlooking the forks of the Thames in the yard of Nancy Campbell private school, leaving children to play in the hollowed out trunk.
'It's a sad story,' said Julie Ryan of ReForest London.

Rules on how much canopy can be pruned due for release; Manukau, Australia

Pruning rules expected
Manukau residents are being warned to be cautious with the pruning shears when new laws on trimming trees come into force on Thursday.
The revised Resource Management Act allows trimming of non-scheduled trees on private land from October 1 but it’s up to each council to decide what that means.
Manukau City Council is due to set out its rules this week.
But Auckland City Council has already decided what it considers appropriate trimming under the new laws. It says residents can trim tree canopies by 'no more than 20 percent of live growth' in any one year, in line with accepted arboriculture practice and without damaging the tree’s health.

Group commissions study on local carrying capacity, impacts of growth on ecosystem services; Charlottesville, VA

Charlottesville Tomorrow News Center: Scientist explains ASAP research on impacts of population growth on local ecosystems:
Trees capture carbon dioxide from the air. Open space helps filter groundwater to make it safer for drinking. These are two examples of “ecosystem services” that can be affected by population growth, but until now there has been no attempt to study what links there may be between the two.
The group Advocates for a Sustainable Albemarle Population (ASAP) recently raised $112,000 to conduct a series of studies to establish an “optimal sustainable population size” for Charlottesville and Albemarle County. The City contributed $11,000 and the County contributed $25,000 towards five studies, one of which was to analyze how different levels of population growth would affect the ability of the landscape to provide ecosystem services."

Thursday, September 24, 2009

New Hamphire peeks over the Mass. border and prepares for Asian longhorned beetle threat; NH

A tiny beetle carries a big threat -, North Andover, MA: "A tiny beetle carries a big threat
Campaign aims to raise awareness of Asian longhorned beetle

By Jo-Anne MacKenzie
They're the smallest of unwelcome aliens, about 3/4 to 11/4 inches long. There's no border patrol to screen them for entry, but federal and state officials are doing their best to keep them out of virgin territory.
The Asian longhorned beetle, known in forestry circles as ALB, is among the scariest of woodland pests, threatening to decimate hardwood forests from coast to coast. Some 23 species of trees are susceptible to the boring beetle, with maples high on that list.
New Hampshire forestry officials are well aware of what havoc the beetle could wreak on the state's hardwood forests. They don't have to look far.
Some 66 square miles around Worcester, Mass., are under quarantine after an ALB infestation was discovered in that city in August 2008. The quarantine area also includes Boylston, West Boylston, Holden and Shrewsbury.

Lawmakers angered that USDA fire Stimulus is funding green jobs UTC effort; Washington, D.C.

Stimulus money for wildfires going to DC parks Washington Examiner:
By: MATTHEW DALY Associated Press
09/23/09 5:15 PM EDT
WASHINGTON — Nearly $3 million in stimulus money targeted for fighting wildfires is being spent to restore public parks and watersheds in the nation's capital, which has no national forests.
The Forest Service has directed that $2.8 million in "Wildland Fire Management" funds, approved under the economic stimulus law, go to groups that will create "green jobs" in the District of Columbia. The projects are intended to restore public parks and watersheds in the city and highlight the value of urban parks, including a park 2 miles north of the White House that once was plagued by crime.
The stimulus money was awarded to the D.C. Department of Transportation's Urban Forestry Administration, which passed most of it on to Washington Parks & People. A city transportation spokesman could not be reached for comment Wednesday, but the agency said in a news release that the grant would create green jobs in the District and improve the health of the city's urban tree canopy.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Galveston Tree Committee calls for replanting, offers assistance; Galveston, TX

The Galveston County Daily News:
A time to sow and a time to reap

By Heber Taylor
The Daily News
Published September 22, 2009
Where would you most like to see Galveston focus its efforts in planting all those trees lost during Hurricane Ike? We’re not talking long-range here. We’re talking about this winter’s planting season, November to March.

Would you like to see efforts focused on replanting on the 25th Street esplanade, arguably the most beautiful street on the island?

How about focusing on replanting in three parks: Schreiber, Wright Cuney and Adoue?

What about a “neighborwoods” program? In Galveston, the city owns the land next to the street that people consider their front yards. What if the city helped with the cost of planting trees in neighborhoods where the neighbors were willing and pledged to help care for the trees?

The Galveston Tree Committee really wants to know. Its members want to know where you would like to see effort focused in the first real planting season since the storm.

Non-profit 'shocked' at tree removal undertaken contrary to plans worked out with city officials; Palo Alto, CA

Palo Alto Online : Canopy 'shocked' at Cal Ave tree removal:
Canopy 'shocked' at Cal Ave tree removal
Head of nonprofit tree-stewardship group says communication was poor
by Sue Dremann
Palo Alto Online Staff

Palo Alto's tree stewards, Canopy, the nonprofit that has worked to maintain and expand the city's urban forest by planting thousands of trees, said they were stunned by the cutting down of 50 mature trees on California Avenue this week.

The 50-year-old holly oaks were to be replaced over time, not all at once, according to Catherine Martineau, the organization's executive director.

'I have vintage photos of California Avenue when it was built, and we are back there,' she said of the treeless avenue.

Case of mistaken identity leads to uniquely canopied street whose trees "...connect us as neighbors"; Los Angeles, CA

The Moreton Bay fig, 100 years old and still giving L.A. at Home Los Angeles Times:
A colossal but happy mistake
Moreton Bay figs were never meant for a Santa Monica street: They're the wrong tree in the wrong climate. But with help, they've thrived.
By Janet Eastman, Times Staff Writer

The trees loom five stories over the quiet residential street, their thick, interlocking branches forming a sweeping canopy over handsome, custom houses, their trunk bases as wide as SUVs and their tangled surface roots as thick as fire hoses.

So unexpected and exotic that they attract horticultural tourists, the Moreton Bay fig trees (Ficus macrophylla) of La Mesa Drive in Santa Monica are a triumph of urban adaptation. They were planted under the mistaken assumption they were magnolias. All 112 along the seven-block stretch, as well as two cousins, the rustyleaf figs (Ficus rubiginosa), are natives of a rain-forest climate. But they have found a way to thrive, under the watchful eye of homeowners.

'The funny thing is they should never have been planted here,' says Walt Warriner, Santa Monica's community forester and public landscape superintendent. 'They don't have enough room or water, so they've had to create their own microclimate.'

CSX and Penn Hort Society to kick off railway's national "Trees for Tracks" initiative; Philadelphia, PA CSX kicks off "Trees for Tracks" with PHS to transform urban asphalt playground into safe green space:
CSX kicks off 'Trees for Tracks' with PHS to transform urban asphalt playground into safe green space
The nation’s third largest railway and its leading authority on urban revitalization are joining forces 8:30 am to 12 noon on Saturday, September 26, to transform an asphalt playground at the Albert M. Greenfield School into a safe and green space.
The collaboration between CSX and the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, will serve as the official launch of the railway’s “Trees for Tracks” program that promises to plant 21,000 trees, or one tree for each mile of CSX track, in the next five years. Other partners include City Year, the national youth service initiative and Alliance for Community Trees, a national organization dedicated to helping cities restore their forest canopy, a third of which has been destroyed in recent decades.

Inching towards UTC ordinance in Clackamas County; Clackamas County, OR

Inching toward tree protection in Clackamas County Andy Parker - –
By Andy Parker, The Oregonian
September 22, 2009, 5:49PM

They’re still a long ways from saving a single tree, but the Clackamas County commissioners continue to move in that direction.
During a Tuesday afternoon work session, the commissioners accepted the recommendations of a 12-member Trees Task Force, a proposal designed to protect the county’s urban tree canopy.
That doesn’t mean the commissioners adopted the recommendation; it means they’re moving forward with it, trying to work out some kinks before sending it on to the planning commission."

After planting efforts reveal high mortality, city moves to bolster tree protection element of UTC goal strategy; Los Angeles, CA

L.A. council wants to level $1,000 fine against those who illegally remove trees L.A. NOW Los Angeles Times:
Looking to protect more of its urban forest, the Los Angeles City Council voted Tuesday to draft a law allowing city inspectors to issue a $1,000 fine for anyone who illegally removes a street tree.
Under the proposal, citations would be issued to those caught chopping down a tree without city permission in a median strip or on a parkway — the area between the curb and the sidewalk, said Bill Robertson, general manager of the Bureau of Street Services.
The fine also would apply to trees that are on private property but have other city laws protecting them, including California bay, western sycamore and Southern California black walnut trees. Three violations within a year would result in the filing of misdemeanor charges in Superior Court, according to the proposal.
“The problem we’re trying to address is the illegal removal of trees, especially protected trees” such as native oaks, said Cynthia Ruiz, president of the Board of Public Works, which supports the proposed fine.
The proposal comes more than three years after Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa launched his initiative to plant 1 million trees. That program drew fire after The Times reported that organizers were handing out seedlings with a high mortality rate and counting them as planted. Since then, Villaraigosa’s team said the program has surpassed the 245,000-tree mark.

Also covered in LA Times:,0,3387887.story

10,000 free trees for Tulsa from Up With Trees and the Apache Foundation; Tulsa, OK

Up With Trees To Offer Free TreesNewsChannel 8:
Tulsa - Up With Trees is once again offering free trees to area non-profit organizations, faith-based groups and government agencies, but for the first time, a limited number of free trees will also be available to individual homeowners.

Starting in late October, Up With Trees will be distributing up to 10-thousand five-gallon trees in a variety of species, thanks to a grant from the Apache Foundation, which is aiming to help plant two million trees nationwide.

“They’ve had a tremendous impact on Tulsa’s tree canopy already, and we are excited to partner with them again,” says Up With Trees Executive Director Anna America."

Tulsa Mayor issues public call to action to restore ice-storm damaged canopy by planting, charitable giving; Tulsa, OK

GTR Newspapers:Tulsa Residents Encouraged to Replant Trees:
An important project for Tulsa that we can work together on, even after my term as mayor expires, is replanting the 20,000 trees lost in the December 2007 ice storm. You can help our regreen efforts by partnering with our partner, Up With Trees and sponsor a tree or a tree grove for our community or in honor of someone special.
We have planted almost 10,000 trees; however, 10,000 still remain to be planted. Thanks to a grant from the Tulsa Community Foundation, every dollar you give to Up with Trees for our ReGreen Tulsa program will be matched, so your contribution will be doubled!
So how can you help us with our Regreen efforts? There are many ways you can participate in the rebuilding of Tulsa’s tree canopy.

Though no local general funds are involved, city expenditure for UTC study is called into question; Cincinnati, OH

City may spend $65K to check trees The Cincinnati Enquirer:
Cincinnati might spend $65,000 on a flyover of the city to analyze its urban forest.
The issue is on the agenda of City Council's finance committee, which meets at 1 p.m. Chris Monzel, though he's not a member of the committee, plans to go this afternoon in hopes that Chairwoman Laketa Cole will let him express his concern about the expenditure.
'What the heck? What are our priorities for the city? What are we spending our money on?' the Republican asked this morning. 'Again, you don't go remodel your kitchen after you get laid off. It's about setting priorities.'

Monday, September 21, 2009

Hugo remains the storm to measure all others by; Salisbury, NC - Area - Hugo remains the storm to measure all others by:
Gene Watson says it happened one, two, three.
His power went off about 6 a.m., the wind roared in and his cherished white oak tree was down.
The only remnant was a mammoth stump, which from his kitchen window looked like a front-yard statue.
Hugo had taken Rowan County's oldest and largest white oak, where Confederate soldiers had once sought the shade it provided off Sherrills Ford Road.
By 1989, the tree's canopy measured 150 feet wide, its trunk 8 feet across and the trunk's diameter about 28 feet around.
Miraculously, the tree missed Watson's house and a neighbor's car by 10 feet.
'I had a mess,' he recalls.
Some neighbors came to his rescue. They offered to clear the debris for free if they could have the wood.
'I put my hand out and said, 'You've got a deal,'' Watson says.
It took them two months of working in the afternoons and on weekends.

Groups offer tree care classes for citizens, bilingual tree worker training for professionals; Yuma, AZ

Tree and Landscape Expo offers trimming tips tree, trees, brower - Life - YumaSun:
As owner of Terra Verde Horticultural Care, Dan Brower sees more unhealthy trees around Yuma than he cares to.
Much of the problem, he says, stems from improper pruning practices.
So when he and others recently assumed positions on the Yuma Community Tree Council, they agreed that teaching proper techniques could go a long way in the council's overall mission of improving the health of trees in the Yuma area.
Brower raised funds to bring in certified arborists from Tucson to put on a bilingual training session in Yuma on Oct. 13 for those in the area who make their livings pruning or otherwise working with trees.

Toronto asks its citizens to water trees during extended drought; Toronto, Canada

Water your trees, city urges homeowners - The Globe and Mail:
Toronto residents are being urged to water vulnerable trees after the longest string of rainless days in 47 years.
A trace amount of rain — less than 0.2 millimetres — fell on Toronto on Friday morning after 18 straight days without any precipitation. The city has had only three longer unbroken dry spells since records have been kept at Pearson Airport: A 26-day spell in 1938, followed by two 21-day droughts in 1957 and 1963.
“This is a milestone of sorts,” said Environment Canada senior climatologist David Phillips, noting how much has changed from the cold, cloudy months of June, July and August that made this summer the fifth wettest on record.
“It was like the faucet was on and then it was turned off.”

Friday, September 18, 2009

Roadway project held out as model of collaboration, preservation and feedback between citizens and officials; Sarasota, FL

How to plan a roadway Sarasota Florida Southwest Florida's Information Leader:
Efforts to satisfy neighborhood concerns led to a better project on Honore
Published: Friday, September 18, 2009 at 1:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, September 17, 2009 at 8:34 p.m.
Today's ceremonial groundbreaking for the construction of a section of Honore Avenue shows how far road planning has advanced in Sarasota County.
The $17 million project, which will create a 2.7-mile stretch of Honore between Bee Ridge and Fruitville roads, is the product of long and often contentious debates.
At several points, and as recently as last year, it appeared that the Honore extension would be designed and built as yet another generic, wide swath of asphalt -- putting traffic and noise unacceptably close to long-established neighborhoods, and requiring the removal of stately trees.
Fortunately, the contentiousness led to delays. And the delays -- combined with new policies, political compromises and a change of direction in planning -- are likely to produce a less expensive roadway with fewer detrimental effects on neighborhoods but one that fills a noticeable gap in the county's transportation grid.

City moves to pay University of North Texas to perform UTC analysis; Denton, TX

City agrees to fund tree survey Denton Record Chronicle News for Denton County, Texas Local News:
11:50 PM CDT on Wednesday, September 16, 2009By Lowell Brown / Staff Writer
A plan to measure the amount of tree coverage in and around Denton won support Tuesday from the City Council.
Council members informally agreed during a nonvoting work session to spend an estimated $40,000 on a joint project with the University of North Texas to survey the city’s tree canopy. The expense is included in the city’s proposed 2009-10 budget, which faces a council vote Tuesday.
City planners say the project would help set target percentages for tree preservation as part of an ongoing overhaul of the city’s 2004 tree code. The project also is designed to identify wooded land the city might want to buy and protect — a longtime goal of tree preservation advocates, said Chuck Russell, Denton’s planning supervisor.
Code revisions proposed last year called for a citywide tree canopy target of 30 percent, but city officials acknowledged in February that they didn’t know the current canopy percentage.

UVM Spatial Analysis Lab named Definiens Center of Excellence for UTC assessments and other work-also named ESRI Development Center; Burlington, VT

University Communications : University of Vermont:
Release Date: 09-16-2009
Author: Jeffrey R. Wakefield1
Email: Jeffrey.Wakefield@uvm.edu2
Phone: 802/656-2005 Fax: (802) 656-3203
The University of Vermont's Spatial Analysis Laboratory, part of the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, has received two prestigious honors in recent months.
The Definiens corporation, founded by Nobel Prize laureate Gerd Binnig, recently designated the lab one of eight international Centers of Excellence, based in part on the Urban Tree Canopy (UTC) assessment work the lab carried out in collaboration with the U.S. Forest Service. The other seven Centers of Excellence organizations are among the most well-respected and well-funded remote sensing labs in the world.
In addition, ESRI, a leading developer of GIS software, last spring named the lab one of the first ESRI Development Centers.

Indiana Urban Forest Council’s 19th Annual Fall Conference keys on role non-profits play in UTC strategies; Indianapolis, IN

Indiana Urban Forest Council’s 19th Annual Fall Conference Boasts Keynote Pepper Provenzano of TreeLink Muncie Free Press:
CARMEL, IN - On October 14th, 2009 the Indiana Urban Forest Council (IUFC) will hold its 19th annual Fall Conference: “Widening the Circle: How to Broaden the Urban Forest Community”.
A wide array of urban forestry professionals from Indiana and across the nation will convene at the Keep Indianapolis Beautiful (KIB)
headquarters in Indianapolis to share information about the vital role nonprofits play in increasing Indiana’s diminishing tree canopy cover. Opening the conference will be Keep Indianapolis Beautiful President David Forsell, who will share strategies that KIB has
implemented to make trees a working and valuable asset to the City of Indianapolis; which has resulted in community-wide buy in as well as the planting of more than 20,000 trees since 2006.

Should tree protection laws extend from public to private property? Rutherford, NJ

Leader Newspapers:
By Susan C. Moeller / Senior Reporter

RUTHERFORD (Sept. 16, 2009, 2:20 p.m.) — The Rutherford Shade Tree Committee wants a stiffer ordinance to protect the aging canopy of trees that lends Rutherford the moniker “Borough of Trees.”
The local borough council will soon be called upon to decide how far to go in ratcheting up regulations to keep trees healthy.
A sample revision to Rutherford’s code — prepared by the Shade Tree Committee — would extend regulation to certain trees on private property.
Like many other municipalities, Rutherford’s current ordinance emphasizes the protection of trees and plants on public property — parks, highways and streets. But, some towns and boroughs are going further, pushing regulations past the sidewalk and onto people’s lawns.

Brickell woman campaigns to save tree; Miami, FL

Brickell woman campaigns to save tree - Central Miami -
Special to The Miami Herald
Joan Tumpson displays paintings of trees throughout her Brickell townhome -- a sign, she said, "of how much I love trees.''
That's why the self-described environmentalist has been battling for nearly three years to save a row of palms and seven mahoganies on a lot near her home where developers are building a town house complex.
So far she hasn't had much success: All but one have been cut down.
But the prettiest tree remains, and the developer will relocate it after the Miami City Commission voted this summer that it could be moved.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Advocates and officials debate use of tree fund mitigation monies to fund UTC survey; Denton, TX

City may commission tree survey Denton Record Chronicle News for Denton County, Texas Local News:
Some advocates oppose cost of proposal, use of money from tree fund
12:09 AM CDT on Monday, September 14, 2009
By Lowell Brown / Staff Writer
A new phase of Denton’s ongoing tree code overhaul will start this week, as the City Council considers funding a citywide tree canopy survey.
The city would spend an estimated $30,000 to $40,000 on a joint project with the University of North Texas to measure the amount of tree coverage in and around Denton under a plan the council will discuss Tuesday. City planners say the project would help them set target percentages for tree preservation and find wooded land the city might want to buy and protect. No vote is scheduled.
Some tree advocates have criticized the plan, in part because it would use money from the city’s tree fund, which collects fines from developers who illegally clear-cut or fail to meet the city’s minimum standards for onsite tree preservation. They argue that the fund should be spent on protecting trees, not counting them.

Previous topping results in creation of hazard and pending removal of historic trees; Tuscon, AZ

Commission votes to endorse cutting of 80-year-old tamarisks ®:
Tucson Region
Commission votes to endorse cutting of 80-year-old tamarisks
By Megan Neighbor
For the ARizona daily star
Tucson, Arizona Published: 09.10.2009

The Tucson-Pima County Historical Commission voted unanimously — albeit reluctantly — Wednesday to endorse the removal of more than a dozen historic trees near the Manning House downtown.
The non-native tamarisk trees, which are at least 80 years old, were described as a safety hazard in Tucson Urban Landscape Manager Irene Ogata's presentation to the commission.
'When these trees were pruned, they were topped,' Ogata said. 'Once you top a tree, you weaken the structure of that tree.'

Trees not only reduce electricity use, they can also generate electricty according to MIT researchers; Boston, MA

How to generate electricity from a tree?

Ians September 9th, 2009 WASHINGTON
There’s enough power in trees to run an electronic circuit, says a new study.
A study last year led by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) found that plants generate up to 200 millivolts when one electrode is placed in a plant and the other in the surrounding soil.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

American Society of Landscape Architects publishes great on line Green Infrastructure resource guide

Green Infrastructure Resource Guide « The Dirt:
Green Infrastructure Resource Guide
09/08/2009 by asladirt

ASLA created a new online resource guide on green infrastructure. The guide contains lists of organizations, research, concepts and projects related to green infrastructure, and includes sections on: park systems, wildlife habitat and corridors, urban forestry, and green roofs (and walls). Developed for students and professionals, the resource guide contains recent reports and projects from leading U.S. and international organizations, academics, and design firms.
The guide is separated into four sections:
- Park Systems
- Wildlife Habitats and Corridors
- Urban Forestry
- Green Roofs (and Walls).

Tree protection law gives no protection to Southern Live Oaks slated for removal to accomodate parking lot; Miami, FL

Solid as an Oak Tree, Dead as a Door Nail:
Written by Terence Cantarella
They’re in the Design District, they’re old and majestic, and they’re about to be destroyed

Miami art collectors Carlos and Rosa de la Cruz are well along in the construction of their expansive new Design District museum that will showcase their world-renowned collection of contemporary art. It is scheduled to open in time for Art Basel Miami Beach in December. And although their art may be new, across the street from their building, where they’re planning a parking lot, they are dealing with something much, much older: oak trees.
Two 80-foot-tall Southern Live Oaks, estimated to be nearly 100 years old, rise from the soil like living monuments at the rear of the vacant lot at 28 NE 41st St., their wide evergreen canopies casting precious shadows over this corner of a sun-blasted city. Miami, in fact, is ranked among the worst in the nation for tree canopy. “Born” in the early part of the last century, the twin oaks have matured with the neighborhood as it went from agricultural seclusion to mid-century ritz to drug-ravaged slum and finally to its present incarnation as the Design District, one of Miami’s most vibrant commercial areas.
Those two stately oaks, however, may soon fall to the chainsaw.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Are we there yet? Metrics missing - Denver not sure where it stands on UTC goal progress

Greenprint Denver: Enhancing the city forest - Rocky Mountain Independent:
By Tillie Fong September 8, 2009 9:01 AM
Greenprint Denver is halfway through its four-year plan to make Denver more sustainable. This is the fourth in a series looking at specific goals in the plan and the progress that has been made.
Denver is leading the way in planting trees as part of the Tree by Tree — Mile High Million program, but it is not clear exactly how much progress the city has made in increasing its tree canopy.
Under the Greenprint Denver plan, the goal for enhancing Denver’s urban forest is to increase tree coverage to 18 percent from 6 percent.
In 2006, Denver had 12.39 square miles of tree canopy, or roughly 10.5 percent of the city’s land mass. To reach 18 percent, Denver must have 21.42 square miles of tree coverage. It isn’t known, though, how many individual trees are needed to provide that canopy.
“Due to the variability of tree sizes, we are unable to translate the cover number into a tree count,” said Denise Stepto, spokeswoman for Greenprint Denver.

City hopes consultant can help council find holes in tree protection law; Brantford, Ontario, Canada

Tree-protection bylaw on agenda - Brantford Expositor - Ontario, CA
Some city councillors say they want to review the tree-protection bylaw after a series of incidents have demonstrated weaknesses and loopholes.
On the committee-of-the-whole agenda tonight is a recommendation to hire a consultant for $80,000 who will work with a task force made up of councillors Dan McCreary and James Calnan, and representatives from the city's environmental policy, heritage and waterfront advisory committees.
'We as a council have learned a lot in the past few years about the need to be more careful in writing measures to protect trees, particularly from rampant development,' said McCreary.
He is spearheading the move to review the existing bylaw, which was approved in 2002 following a series of incidents in which large numbers of trees were cut to make way for development projects.

The ash borer may be contained in Missouri; Wayne County, MO

The ash borer may be contained in Missouri -
By Kim McGuire

When the emerald ash borer was discovered at Lake Wappapello last year, it seemed certain the green beetle would fan out across Missouri, leaving dead ash trees in its wake.

But so far, surveys conducted across the state this summer suggest Missouri's infestation is confined to the immediate area in Wayne County where it was discovered in 2008.

For now anyway.

Monday, September 7, 2009

UVM imagery expert talks about importance of seeing the trees as well as the forests when it comes to UTC assessment; Burlington, VT

Letters from the SAL: Sweat the small stuff:
Sweat the small stuff
Several years ago we performed our first urban tree canopy (UTC) assessment in Baltimore City, which lead to Baltimore City establishing one of the first UTC goals in the nation (40%). The land cover data used to determine Baltimore's existing tree canopy percentage of 20% came from the Strategic Urban Forest Assessment (SUFA) dataset. SUFA relied on pixel-based classifiers to extract land cover information from 2001 IKONOS satellite imagery.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Utility-funded, NGO administered tree planting program seeks to reduce demand side electric use; Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

Daily Exchange:
Pilot project brings shade to homes in Waterloo and Kitchener
Waterloo - This fall, a new pilot project will provide the residents of Kitchener and Waterloo with an exclusive chance to save money, conserve energy and help the environment all at the same time. Modeled after a program that has brought over 13,000 residential trees to the Greater Toronto Area since 1996, the project invites homeowners to visit local nurseries, where they will receive a rebate on purchases of Southern Ontario’s beautiful native trees and shrubs.
The project, aptly named the “Cool Communities Residential Shade Tree Planting Program”, is aimed at encouraging homeowners to plant trees for energy conservation. Cooling homes through shading has significant long-term potential to reduce peak energy demand in Ontario. Shade trees planted on the southern and western sides of a home can save 25–40%, and reduce peak energy demand in summer by up to 30%, according to a study by the University of California Berkeley. By planting a tree, homeowners also improve their neighbourhoods by cleaning the air, decreasing pollution, attracting pollinators, and increasing biodiversity.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

City gets grant to study benefits provided by UTC; Clarksville, TN The Leaf-Chronicle Clarksville and Fort Campbell news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Clarksville, TN:
City of Clarksville to get $9K for tree study
By ERIC SNYDER • The Leaf-Chronicle • September 2, 2009
Clarksville will receive a $9,000 grant to help the city learn more about its urban forest.
According to a city news release this week, the city will receive the state Department of Agriculture's Urban and Community Forestry Grant. The funds will allow the city to partner with Austin Peay State University's GIS Center, whose student workers will input information on the city's trees into CITYGreen.
CITYGreen is a piece of computer software, purchased by the city last year, that will allow Clarksville to "inventory, quantify and analyze the tree canopy and its benefits for the entire city," the news release said.

Also covered in: Clarksville receives Tennessee Urban and Community Forestry Grant

Over 3,000 join Facebook group to save community oak slated for preservation during shopping centre development but now failing; Milton Keynes, UK

Concern over Oak tree - Heart 103.3:
More should have been done to look after and protect the oak tree in the middle of Midsummer Place Shopping Centre.
That’s according to Milton Keynes councillor, Roger Bristow.
He claims that when the shopping centre was given planning permission one of the conditions was that the oak tree, known as the North Bucks Oak – and the only tree saved from the site that was Bradwell Common – should be fully protected and retained. That’s one reason why the shopping centre isn’t totally covered with a roof.
There are now concerns that the oak tree is dying – and a facebook group for people worried about the tree has even been set up with thousands of members. This year there have been very few leaves on the iconic tree.

Letter to the editor calls for tree planting budget to be restored in face of threats to UTC due to DED, EAB, and maples losses; Oak Park,IL

Tree planting budget must be restored:
At no time since Dutch elm disease devastated the American elms lining village parkways in the 1950s and 1960s has the health of our urban forest been so threatened. The Forestry Commission is recommending that the board restore the entire 2009 tree planting budget of $100,000 for a fall planting program.
The village removes on average 150 to 250 elm trees a year. The number of elms dying this year has increased substantially, necessitating the removal of many of the largest tree canopies in the village.
Emerald ash borer has been identified in some of our largest ash trees. It's likely that most of the 2,600 parkway ash trees will require removal over the next 10 to 15 years.
The village can also expect high losses of mature maple trees due to the end of their natural lifespan. The combined totals of threatened American elm, ash and mature maples represents 35 percent of the village's total parkway tree inventory.
Prior to emerald ash borer, about 400 trees were removed annually; but those numbers could potentially reach 600 to 800 trees or more.

Ohio Northern University named 2009 Tree Campus USA university by National Arbor Day Foundation; Ada, OH

Ohio Northern University named 2009 Tree Campus USA university:
ADA -The Arbor Day Foundation has honored Ohio Northern University as a 2009 Tree Campus USA university for its dedication to campus forestry management and environmental stewardship.

Ohio Northern is the second institution in Ohio to be named a Tree Campus USA campus or university and among a handful in the nation, joining such institutions as Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech.

'The Tree Campus USA program will have a long-lasting impact at Ohio Northern as it engages college students and local citizens to plant trees and create healthier communities for people to enjoy for decades to come,' said John Rosenow, chief executive of the Arbor Day Foundation. 'Ohio Northern will benefit from exceptional tree-care practices on campus as it works with tree-care professionals in the community to improve the tree canopy in Ada.'

Tree mitigation fund allows for UTC initiative despite lean budget; Denton, TX

City plans to maintain tax rate Denton Record Chronicle News for Denton County, Texas Local News:
City plans to maintain tax rate
Proposal includes less library funds, no gifts to Kiwanis
12:21 AM CDT on Tuesday, September 1, 2009
By Lowell Brown / Staff Writer
Denton residents get their chance to weigh in on the city’s proposed 2009-10 budget during a public hearing tonight.
The budget includes no tax rate increase, and the base rates for city electric, water, wastewater and trash service would not change. But residents would see some higher costs, including increased athletic fees and facility rental charges at recreation centers.
A City Council vote is set for Sept. 22.
New expenditures include $100,000 from the tree mitigation fund on a tree canopy survey.

City and non-profit Tree Trust to help tornado victims replant with $25 trees; Minneapolis, MN

KSTP TV - Minneapolis and St. Paul - Mpls. Hopes to Restore Trees After Tornado
The city hopes a new program will take root to help reshape the landscape of south Minneapolis after a tornado touchdown on Aug. 19.
The EF-0 tornado destroyed 250 trees along city streets.
While firm numbers are still unknown about the total number of trees homeowners lost, the city says it hauled away 180 semi-truck loads of brush and logs after the storm. All those downed trees will be chipped and turned into landscape mulch.
City leaders started talking about rebuilding the lost tree canopy at last week's council meeting.

City Councilmember urges public to apply for a seat on city Urban Forest Commission; Seattle, WA

Apply for Urban Forest Commission West Seattle Herald:
Apply for Urban Forest Commission
By City Council member Nick Licata
August 31, 2009
(Editor's note: The following article appears originally in Seattle City Council member Nick Licata's newsletter 'Urban Politics.')

The city is currently seeking members to serve on the Urban Forestry Commission. Background on the urban forest, related legislation and a description of the duties and membership positions of the Urban Forestry Commission are included below. Information on how to apply is provided at the end of this newsletter.