Urban and Community Forestry

Simple Way to Check if Your Trees Need Water

A simple test using a screwdriver can help you see if a tree is dried out and needs more water, said Kelly Conroy with the Sacramento Tree Foundation.

"Drive [the screwdriver] into the ground about six inches, and you can feel if the soil is dry and crumbly, then it needs some water, or if it comes up muddy or sticky, then you're probably good to let it dry out for a couple of days," said Conroy.

The Melbourne Treemail Phenomenon

Some people talk to their plants. In Melbourne, they email the trees. This became possible thanks to a decision to map every tree in the city and give it a unique ID number.

About 3,000 emails have been sent to individual trees in the last two years. People even began sending personal messages to the trees. This didn't start out as an exercise in sentiment, but a hard-headed attempt by Melbourne city council to manage an urban forest in decline - as a result of drought, by 2009 40% of the 77,000 trees in Australia's "garden city" were struggling or dying.

Growing DC's Urban Forest

About an hour outside the city, just south of where the Shenandoah River crosses into Virginia, a farm is growing the most natural of crops for its terroir: trees.

Only these trees aren’t planted to stretch their roots along the river’s shore. After a few years of growing, they’ll be uprooted and trucked to a more concrete-oriented home, where they’ll provide shade and dozens of other benefits to the people who live there. Though their bucolic setting makes it hard to believe, these are city trees.

UCF Committee May 2015 Meeting Documents

Documents from the May 2015 meeting are attached.

City of Modesto Receives Grant for Urban Forests

CAL FIRE awarded nearly $20 million in grants this week to 34 nonprofit organizations, special districts, counties and cities to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and sequester carbon. The grants are for planting trees in urban environments and to protect more than 2,400 acres of forest from development. The city of Modesto received nearly $327,000 to plant 5,000 trees over the next couple of years and to help the city’s nursery, which reopened this year after closing in 2008 because of budget cuts. 

Register for the Partners in Community Forestry Conference

By Lisa Allen, Chair of the NASF Urban and Community Forestry Conference.

Registration is now open for the 2015 Partners in Community Forestry Conference.

Join your urban and community forestry peers from November 18-19 in Denver, Colorado.

The annual meeting is a dynamic networking opportunity. Doctoral researchers, municipal foresters, environmental nonprofit professionals, utility arborists and commercial tree care leaders are a few examples of the diverse audience of speakers.

National Get Outdoors Day: Explore Your State Forests and Green Spaces

National Get Outdoors Day is this Saturday, June 13th, and many state forestry agencies are working to connect you to the trees that surround you. 

Today, close to 80 percent of Americans live in cities. But, thanks to the great work of state foresters and their partners, the United States urban trees and forests provide plenty of opportunity for adventure nearby. 

Worcester Continues Replanting Trees Lost to Asian Longhorned Beetle

With shovels, water and a lot of help from students, Congressman James McGovern and District 3 City Councilor George Russell took part in a ceremonial tree planting at Roosevelt Elementary School on Wednesday.

Overall, 14 trees leading to the front entryway were planted by the Worcester Tree Initiative. They included dogwoods, honey locusts and service berry trees.

USDA Forest Service announces $1.9 million for community forests

The U.S. Forest Service announced Tuesday more than $1.9 million in Community Forest Program grants to support local communities and preserve community forests across the United States.

Trees Help Cool Urban Heat Islands

An urban “heat island” is the condition where urban areas are significantly warmer than the surrounding countryside during the heat of summer due to human activity and the large amount of heat-absorbing surfaces, plus the lack of vegetation and the cooling it provides.