Showing posts from 2008

2008 Tree Season in 40 Seconds

Norwegian photographer Eirik Solheim:
...I started shooting images...from the same spot each time, but not through my window. I found a spot outside that gave more or less the same framing each time I placed my camera. So, I went out on our balcony snapping some images at pretty irregular intervals all through 2008 .

One year in 40 seconds from Eirik Solheim on Vimeo.

Marietta Initiates Long-awaited Tree Planting

The City of Marietta has begun the first phase of its 500 tree planting project. This week alone, 230 trees were installed in the downtown district of the Cobb County seat. Marietta's tree committee, city staff, and some outside experts banded together to determine where the trees would be planted.

The city identified approximately 10 general locations in Marietta that were lacking in adequate canopy cover.

The current plantings are part of a greater master plan the city and community developed two years ago. The master plan targets the main entrance corridors to Marietta, such as the 120 loop where there aren't many existing trees in proximity to the road. The second phase includes installing replacement trees where there are already over-mature trees, such as Church and Cherokee streets, and Kennesaw Avenue.

The city was ready to move forward two years ago, but with the rain deficit and waning water resources Marietta officials decided to wait until the region's rainfall …

Readers Vote Hickory Trees for Best Atlanta Fall Color

Our poll ends with Hickory receiving the most votes for best fall color in Atlanta. Second place is awarded to Sugar maples for their yellow and orange displays. Red maple came in third, noted for its variety of reds, purples, and golds.

Fall Linkfest

Stoke up your outdoor experience with these autumnal tree links

Planting is the most rewarding time to plant trees, and these guys agree with me:

• Augusta Chronicle planting article
• Bill Lamson-Scribner of the Charleston Courier - article meanders a bit, just read the last paragraph
• Lee Reisch at the Hickory Record.
• Even the Canadians agree.

Walter Reeves answers a question about planting Japanese maple seeds.

Fall color is soon to reach its peak here in Atlanta, judging from this article at The Franklin Press Online (NC).

Tree Maintenance Workshop Announced

The Georgia Arborist Association has announced a new workshop for municipal government staff: Tree Maintenance for Local Governments. The course will be taught by Connie Head of Technical Forestry Services, and is scheduled for Friday, October 24, 2008.

This offering will be for municipal staff only. Topics will include: Tree Biology, Tree Protection, Pruning, Tree Planting, and basic hazard evaluation. Lunch included!


White Oak Park, Dallas GA
9:30 AM to 3:00 PM

Contact the GAA for more information or call 770-749-0444.

How to Identify Georgia Trees (What Kind of Tree is THAT?)

Puzzled by the staggering legions of oaks, hickories, and little shrubby things in Atlanta's forests, nature enthusiasts and professional arborists alike have been caught more than once scratching heads and cramping necks in an attempt to identify a favorite tree.

Trees of Georgia and Adjacent States, by Brown and Kirkman, has been helping would-be-dendrologists solve this problem for decades. It is a well researched, crisp tome, that is also easily digested. The book succeeds because it has one major goal: to serve as a resource in identifying the species of native trees and woody plants in Georgia and the Southeastern US.

Special features of the book:

Dichotomous key (although it is worded a bit too concisely)
• Winter key to flowering trees
• Leaf, leaf scar, bud, flower and fruit diagrams
• Color photographs of leaves, flowers, fruit, and bark
• Tree descriptions
• Explanations of the difficulties in specific species recognition (is it Black willow or Coastal plain Willow?)
• Range…

Trees Squelch Bad Odors

New research shows that trees can reduce emissions of dust, ammonia, and odors near poultry farms. In some cases, the emissions were cut by almost half.

The study was presented at the 236th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS).

The report suggests that planting vegetation could reduce ammonia and particulates that degrade air and water quality. Research began in 2000, when residents near poultry farms in Maryland and Virginia complained about nasty odors from chicken houses. The research lead, Dr. George W. Malone of the University of Delaware said "We were aware of the concerns locally. We looked at what we could do to address them and the whole area of air quality as it relates to the emission of ammonia from poultry houses."

Researchers proposed planting trees to serve as a filter. In this six-year study, Malone found that a three-row plot of trees of various species and sizes reduced total dust by 56%, ammonia 53%, and odor 18%.

Not all trees function t…

Linkfest - grab bag

I found these links while "Stumbling" today:

ScienceRay posted a quick primer on leaf physiology. The science part is not nearly as interesting as the photography.

As fall approaches, many shade trees begin to produce their mature fruit. Local Ecologist hasn't forgotten the Ginkgo.

Sweet, sweet imagery from John P Sercel.

Mountain Park Proposes New Tree Ordinance

Google just sent me this tip, but it looks like the proposed tree ordinance for the City of Mountain Park was posted way back in April 2008. Mountain Park has an html version on their website.

Reading through the ordinance text it appears that the criteria for specimen trees is based on the City of Alpharetta's tree ordinance.

The proposed ordinance requires that a minimum tree density be retained on residential sites following tree removal activities. Density minimums are an un-grandfathered 400 inches per acre. I also found an unusual component stating that it is a violation to "Attach any sign, notice or other object to any tree or fasten any wires, cables, nails or screws to any tree in a manner that could prove harmful to the tree, except as necessary in conjunction with activities in the public interest."

The penalties section is interesting too. Illegal removal of, or damage to, specimen trees requires replacement equal to five times the value in inches.

President Carter's Home Damaged by Tree

Wind and rain related to Tropical Storm Fay may have contributed to the failure of a large oak that crashed into the Plains home of former President Jimmy Carter. The incident occurred Saturday night.

Carter's son, Jeff, told the AJC that the tree fell into the house just above the living room. Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter were at home at the time. No personal injuries were reported.

Webs in Tree - Its Time For Fall Webworms

I'm getting reports from farther south that fall webworms are active in their favorite trees: Pecans.

Hyphantria cunea is not particularly damaging to trees, but the webs are considered unsightly in the landscape. The insect is a leaf-feeder and does not directly injur other parts of the host plant. I don't recommend any treatment. By the time the webs are noticed, the caterpillars probably have had their fill of leaves.

Other trees considered delicious are persimmon, black cherry, Yoshino cherry, sourwood, sweetgum, willow, and red mulberry.

Linkfest - big trees

Today's links fall under the category of largest mass - whatever that means.

• ScienceRay posts 11 More Spectacular Trees From Around the World. The last tree on the page he names the "Square Knot Tree," but it's actually a Granny knot.

• The California Register of Big Trees is a chart with factual information about individual specimens growing on the left coast.

• Similar to the above link, American Forests publishes a national register of big trees.

• Georgia has its own registry, but there are no photographs online.

Big Trees Forest Preserve is located in Sandy Springs, Georgia. It does in fact have big trees, but they aren't the largest.

Top 10 Trees - Know Them or Suffer

The late Dr. Shigo once professed to me "If you want to be an expert, find the 10 most common trees that grow in your region and get to know them. Really, really, get to know them." Being a smart-aleck I asked him if this was some kind of contest or something. Having no sense of humor for my shenanigans, Dr. Shigo explained that I should make a list of the most common trees on my customer's properties and get to work at discovering what makes these trees tick.

So here is my top 10 for the Atlanta region:
Tulip poplar
Water oak
Willow oak
White oak
Southern red oak
Post oak
Red maple
Flowering dogwood
Loblolly pine
What trees would you add to the list? What trees would you subtract?

Live Oak - a forgotten Atlanta landscape tree

Though it is the colossus that shades the streets of Savannah and is the state tree of Georgia, the Live oak Quercus virginiana continues to be overlooked as a potential landscape or specimen tree in Atlanta. Live oaks embody many of the sentimental qualities that are often associated with a southern oak: expansive, rich with character, and hauntingly lyrical with tales to tell of children and families meeting beneath the shadow if its weathered limbs.

Its popular detraction is also its greatest asset. Slow growing, but conservative.

Yet given the right conditions of bright sunlight, moisture, and well-drained soil, this tree is moderately, even fast-growing, in youth. Over time, this tree can outperform and outlive some of the more cosmopolitan oaks such as Willow oak and the newest urban dweller Nuttall oak.

It is a recommended southern landscape tree by Michael Dirr.

And the winner is... (Guess the Tree's Age contest)

Congratulations to Nonot, who's estimate came the closest in May's contest. The Scarlet oak, located just a few miles north of Atlanta, is 42 years old this year.

Here is the story of the tree, as told by the woman standing next to the oak:

When Fulton County installed the sewer line my children told me to come down and look at the creek where they cut down all the trees. When I walked down there I saw this tree that had been pushed over but the bark wasn't skinned off of it so I dug it up and brought it home and planted it and the other one over there.

My neighbors made fun of me and wanted to know why I planted a switch in my front yard. When I planted it, I could reach around it with my thumb and finger like this: [overlapped at first knuckles]

So we estimated the tree was about 3 years old when she planted it. That was 39 years ago!

tim the shrubber came close, with his guess of 39 years old, which is the age when it was planted. Randy gets special mention for several s…

Some Tree Species are Exempt in Atlanta Tree Ordinance

Here is a neat little Atlanta Tree Ordinance hack of which you may not be aware.

Most people know, to remove any healthy tree 6 inches or greater in diameter requires cash recompense be paid to the city (or tree replacement), along with a city-approved tree removal permit. Fewer people know that the minimum size for pines is 12 inches in diameter. But what most residents don't know is that there are several tree species that are considered so heinous, so undesirable, so horrid...that they do not require paid recompense, replacement or posting.

And they are:

• Mimosa Albizia julibrissin
• Tree of heaven Ailanthus altissima
• White mulberry Morus alba
• Paper mulberry Broussonetia papyrifera
• Chinaberry Melia azederach
• Princess tree Paulownia tomentosa
• Carolina cherry laurel Prunus caroliniana
• Bradford Pear Pyrus calleryana
• Leyland cypress Cupressocyparis leylandii -x

In addition, if any of these species are over 12 inches in diameter, they are still exempt as long as the subject pr…

Quick Links for Tree Aficionados

I couldn't pass this link without sharing it with my readership. Its certainly not definitive, but fun nonetheless.

Magnificent Trees of the World

If you like wallpapers and trees, but haven't been able to reconcile the two, try nature wallpapers.

ScienceNews Erroneously Reports Germination of a 2000 Year Old Tree Seed reported on Thursday that Israeli botanists helped Bar-Ilan University germinate a 2,000 year old date palm seed. The seed was part of an archeological collection, discovered when excavations in the ’60s uncovered five date pits in the Dead Sea region of Israel at Masada. The age of the seed was theorized through calibrated radiocarbon dating.

The erroneous reporting came through the term "tree" and "sapling," when ScienceNews incorrectly classified the ancient plant as a tree. Palms are not trees. They are monocots, being more closely related to a grass. Totally different.

Full story...

Storms Cause Scattered Tree Damage

Trees came down across several roads in the spotty Wednesday night storms across Atlanta metro. Although lightning was the cause of several power outages and an apartment fire, WXIA reported two arboreral incidents: a tree along Beckwith Street near the Atlanta University Center fell and landed on a car, and a huge tree limb near Glenwood Avenue came down and blocked the street.

Neither tree was a pine, of course. How is that possible?

Tree Reading for this Week

Here is a great article about Greg McPherson, a project leader for the USDA Forest Service. It discusses Greg's recent experiences in urban tree research. Climate change ranting is kept to a minimum. Some of the highlights:

- Greg's research relies on systematic cost-benefit models [Persuasive!].
- Planting tree varieties that require little irrigation will generate benefits many times the initial investment.
- Tree planting efforts should not focus on the number of trees, as this can lead to putting trees in the wrong place. Maximally functional canopy is much more important.

He also reveals some of the more practical benefits of urban tree planting, in addition to the usual ho-hum carbon sequestration and property value figures. Read the full story...PDF

The Greening of America
This Washington Post article investigates the difficulties of finding planting spots for trees in dense urban areas. Full story...

On the flip side
There are well-researched metho…

Blueberries are ready for picking. NOW.

The weather has been sweetly perfect for berries this year, and Tree News just received a tip. The Thoms family farm in Griffin is ready to unleash blueberry mania. We found the big, plump, early berries that everyone craves. The prices are the same as last year: you pick a gallon for $10.00. The place is the same, also: 175 Chappell Mill Rd Griffin, GA. Betsy Thoms recommends that you call 770-461-6013 for updates on blueberry availability.

This week they will be open for picking: June 9th Monday 6-8 pm; June 11 Wed. 9-11 am; June 12 Thursday 6-8 pm; June 14 Saturday 9-11 am.

Pass this information on to your friends and family, web pages, and any where else that you think folks might like non-chemically altered, fresh blueberries.

Remember these freeze well and easily. Don’t pre-wash the berries. Just put them on a cookie sheet in the freezer long enough to freeze the berries individually, then put them in freezer bags. You will be able to enjoy the berries all year.

We l…

Plants and Groundcovers for Shade

Trees making it difficult to plant grass? Join the club. A love affair with big shady trees makes it frustrating to find sharp-looking plants and groundcovers that will thrive in the shade. It is one of the most often asked questions that my customers ask.

Try these on for, size:

• Southern shield fern Dryopteris ludoviciana
This deciduous native fern is tall -- it grows up to 4 feet with 1-foot wide fronds. This fern will tolerate more sun than most ferns, if moisture levels are adequate. Cut it back in August. Also known as a wood fern or Southern maiden fern.

• Spreading sword fern Nephrolepis cordifolia
Great ground cover for moist shade. Grows into spreading masses.

• Crested iris Iris cristata
A spreading evergreen that has pale flowers in spring, and of course, loves shade.

• Walking iris Neomarica gracilis
Prefers good morning sun with afternoon shade. Produces white blooms with yellow, blue and brown markings.

• Pigeonberry Rivina humilis
Produces small flowers and red be…

GAA Announces "Hands-On" Ground Worker Training

The Georgia Arborist Association is continuing their vision for high-quality training for the tree care industry. This particular seminar is designed for participation, meaning that a number of activities will actively engage each person in “doing” as opposed to “watching.”

The targeted number of instructors for each learning station is 2, creating a 5:1 instructor/student ratio. A Spanish translator will be available for each group of 10 Spanish speaking participants. A brief written test at the end of the seminar and certificates of completion will be awarded each participant. These subjects will be offered:

1. Electrical Hazards
2. Ground Safety
3. Ground Operations
4. Hazard Assessment
5. Knot Tying
6. Throw Line

Six I.S.A. Continuing Education Credits will be offered

Office: (770) 554-3735
Fax: (770) 554-2022

Saturday, May 31, 2008 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM

United Methodist Children’s Home
500 S. Columbi…

City of Milton Passes Tree Ordinance Resolution

On May 6 the Milton City Council gave a nod to a future revision of the current Tree Conservation Ordinance.

When the City of Milton incorporated in late 2006, it adopted the Fulton County Tree Conservation Ordinance which was used in the area prior to the City's formation. Now, as the new city is maturing, council has approved a resolution to establish a citizens' participation group to revise or create a new Milton Tree Preservation Ordinance. The city of Sandy Springs, incorporated a year prior to Milton, successfully implemented a whole new ordinance in early 2007.

When a community decides to adopt a new or revised tree ordinance in Georgia, the creation of a citizen's participation group or task force is a common procedure in Georgia.

Guess the Tree's Age and Win!

MikeB over at RegularDad gave me a great idea for this month's contest.

Can you correctly pin this tree's age?

Here is what you need to know:
• The tree is in the Red oak family, most likely a naturalized Scarlet oak hybrid.
• It is growing in the Atlanta area.
• The photographs were taken last week.

Make your guess by post a comment below. The person who comes the closest will receive a winner's link, with anchor text, to their blog or website of choice. Multiple winners are possible, so get at it!

Reader Speaks Out

Today I was talking to Harefoot, a daily reader of Tree News. He was commenting on how much he enjoyed reading the articles, but he had one concern.

This is how the conversation went:

"I check your blog every day, but I've been a bit bored with it lately."

Really? Do you want more content...more posts...maybe another Tree Care Handbook?

"No. I'm bored from that insipid map of Atlanta quadrants."
Now it is true that the Arborist Quadrant Map does not exactly meet the quality control guidelines of Tree News. It is also true that this graphic element is a bit too dry for us drought-weary Georgians. But the map does clearly and succinctly illustrate the bold numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4.

Understand that Harefoot does not live in Atlanta and does not fully appreciate how exciting the organizational structure of the City Arborist Quadrants can be. So I politley laughed, gave an accepting nod, and quickly changed the subject.

City of Atlanta Updates its City Arborist List

The Arborist Division of the Atlanta City Government regularly updates a list of their city Arborists. There are four municipal field personnel, each responsible for a quadrant. They are:

Area 1: Tom Coffin 404.330.6077
Area 2: Janell Bazile 404.330.6071
Area 3: Paul Lewkowicz 404.330.6882
Area 4: Michael Franklin 404.330.6079

For final inspections, contact Stanley Domengeaux 404.546.1047

The Arborist Division is esponsible for reviewing and approving all building permits and tree removal plans.

How To Measure the Height of a Tree

On September 7, 2006 the San Francisco Chronicle reported that researchers had just discovered a 378 foot (113 meters) tall tree that is probably the world's tallest living tree. If you think you can find a tree that can break that record, or just want to measure that tree in your backyard, try these techniques. These methods can also give you a good approximation of the heights not only of trees, but also of telephone poles, buildings, magic beanstalks—pretty much anything tall.
Shadow Method
Know your exact height in the shoes you will be wearing to perform this method.
Stand next to the tree or the object to be measured. For best results, do this method on a bright, sunny day. If the sky is overcast, it may be difficult to tell exactly where the shadow’s tip is
Measure the length of your shadow. Use a tape measure or yardstick (meter ruler) to measure your shadow from your feet to the tip of your shadow. If you don’t have someone to assist you, you can mark the e…

Amazing Flowering Dogwood Tree is Now Historic

Think you've seen some awesome Dogwoods? Try this one out. Athens, Georgia is home to a monster Cornus.

I first saw this specimen in 1996, when I was touring the Hospital grounds in preparation for some tree pruning. I remember thinking that it should be on some kind of "Big Tree List" or something, but I was too preoccupied (lazy) to do anything about it.

The Georgia Urban Forestry Council inducted the tree into its own Historic Tree Register this year. It is located directly beside Prince Avenue at Athens Regional Medical Center. It measures 24" inches in diameter at the base and it is in perfect condition. Next to the tree is a plaque noting its date of planting as 1951, by Charles L. Pope. The majority of the residents regard this tree as one of the largest Dogwood trees in the state of Georgia.

If you would like to write the tree a letter, its address is 1199 Prince Avenue, Athens GA. Or you can just take a trip and see it at Athens Regional Medical Center. …

Tree Care Handbook Vol. 1, Flowering Dogwood

Onebark Consulting Arborist has announced the pre-release of the Tree Care Handbook, Volume 1, first of a series of free technical manuals on the care of specific tree species. This particular release covers crucial instruction for the care of the Flowering dogwood Cornus florida.

How is this handbook different from other related articles? The Tree Care Handbook series contains aggregate information from treatises, US government publications, and forestry texts; and most importantly, draws upon the profound knowledge of experienced professional tree care practitioners.

The handbook series is designed to:
Weed out erroneous and generic advice from the art of tree care
Highlight best management practices for trees
Promote strong links between online tree care sources
Please come back and comment here after downloading the handbook. Feedback regarding the handbooks will be considered for future volume releases.

Download Tree Care Handbook Vol.1, Flowering Dogwood.

Bare Root Trees Are Easier Than You Think

Planting bare root trees is a fun and economical way to have lush green trees on your property without the higher cost of purchasing established trees. Although it is not difficult to do, it is important to keep in mind some specific guidelines in order maximize your chances for success. By following these easy steps, you can turn your brown thumb into a green thumb in no time.
Carefully unpack the bare root tree from the container or material it came in. Be careful not to damage any of the roots during the unpacking process.
Set the tree into a bucket filled with water. Allow the tree to soak for 4-6 hours prior to planting. This will allow the roots of the tree to soak up water and not dry out during the initial shock of planting.
Dig a hole slightly larger than the diameter and depth of the tree and soil width. For example, if the tree roots and soil are 50 cm /19.6" wide, dig a hole 60 cm /23.6" wide to allow for maximum root spread.
Check to be sure there are no lar…

Cherry Trees in Atlanta Make a Superior Showing

After a dry and dull 2007, it looks as if this year's growing season is commencing with a grand fireworks display. Yoshino Cherry trees are blooming in one of the fullest and consistent displays in recent memory. Just about any asian cherry cultivar or hybrid is glaringly obvious right now. Even the sides of normally drab highway buffers are sprinkled with lavender and nearly-white flowers.

The Yoshino Cherry is the famous tree species in Washington DC, common on US Capitol grounds and around the Library of Congress. In 1909 and again in 1912, the city of Tokyo sent thousands of Japanese cherries to Washington. It is known as Somei-yoshino in Japan, a hybrid of unknown origin that was first introduced in Tokyo in 1872.

Atlanta blogger Judi has a weeping cherry ornamental that is in the spirit too.

Pine Tree Looses Needles Early; An Apparent Impostor

In the late 1990's, upscale neighborhoods in the urban center of Atlanta began to treat their cell towers to a bit of camouflage. Imitation needles and branches were affixed to lifeless metal poles. One of the first towers to become 'green' was located at near the intersection of Briarcliff and North Druid Hills Roads. So realistic were the well fashioned duds, that commuters exclaimed that they never realized that such a big Pine tree sprouted up behind the Burger King.

Now, almost 10 years later, it appears that the tree has dropped its drawers prematurely. Exposed for the sham that it is, this is one Pine that now needs a little dressing up again. Or have the Pine beetles become just a bit too aggressive?

White Blooms in Atlanta

For those searching for information on white blooming trees in Atlanta, there are several showy woody plants that are flowering right now:
Bradford pear trees are finishing, and now starting to push their leaves.
Wild pears are still flowering.
Dogwood trees are beginning to open up their flower buds, but this will take at least two weeks to get going
Star magnolias are finishing up.
White flowering cherry trees are just starting to open their flower buds.

Tornado Appears, Damages Trees, and Leaves

A tornado touched down in downtown Atlanta, sometime between 9:30 and 10 PM, Friday night. As the city's residents go outside this morning to examine what happened, they may find that their beloved trees have been damaged or even toppled. So far the blogs and news sources are reporting that many trees came down onto houses and cars.

Like the tornado of 1998, north of Atlanta in Dunwoody, trees will need to be cleared from roads and taken off houses over the next few weeks. Many more trees, that are still standing, have suffered partial or non-catastrophic damage. All tree owners should take the time over the next week to examine their trees for the following:
- A new, or aggravated, lean
- Broken, hanging branches teetering in the tree canopy
- Large cracked limbs still attached to the trunk
- Broken roots near the soil surface
- Heaving or mounding soil near the base of the tree
If there is any question as to whether these failures are hazardous, a qualified tree risk assessor should…

Pear Tree, Part 1

My son and I have been watching a Kieffer Pear tree around the 'hood. In a previous article I mentioned that this tree was to be our subject of study this year. The tree's buds have erupted.

The sepals and flower petals are clearly visible.

A few young leaves can be seen as well.

The creamy white color of the petals will develop within the next few days.

Greenspade Shovels Up Some Unique Information

Greenspade, a horticultural and tree blog, deserves a look. Although the author is not local, Atlanta tree enthusiasts will find the site interesting. The author, Chris Welch, puts a new twist on blog presentation by organizing article titles as horticultural definitions. If my explanation leaves you puzzled, then visit Greenspade and check out the format. The photography is very good. Graphic elements are pleasing.

Chris is an ISA Certified Arborist and urban horticulturalist.

Trees Fall, Drought Blamed Yet Again

The flurry of storm activity over the past week has focused attention on big trees - especially the trees that have fallen. News outlets have produced a stream of reports mentioning the damage caused by tree failures. The AJC, WDUN, The West Georgian, WXIA, and WGCL, all ran mainstream stories just in the past few days.

Because the drought is still in people's minds, it has become a catchall scapegoat for a number of tree-related problems. It is easy for people to grasp for a connection between drought stress and trees falling, but it is somewhat rash to do so without fully analyzing each case. Catastrophic tree failure is an event that involves the interaction of forces upon a very complex tree system. There are few resources and tools available to diagnose drought-related failures.

Of the catastrophic failures that I have recently observed in Atlanta, drought has not been the primary or secondary cause. Rather, each case involved serious structural problems such as decay. …

February is a Time to Teach

This year, I have decided to teach my son the complete seasonal cycle of a tree. I picked a fruit tree for the following reasons:

- Fruit trees bloom early
- They set a tangible, recognizable fruit
- The qualities of the tree will stimulate the senses: smell, taste, touch

The victim, er uh, subject, is a lone Kieffer Pear at the bottom of a short road embankment near our neighborhood. The tree is in the street right-of-way, making the pear a 'public' tree. We don't want to be trespassing, now, do we? Since we roll by the tree regularly on both walks and drives, my son and I will be able to monitor the tree as it blooms, breaks leaves, produces fruit, and turns color. The grand climax, of course, will be picking some pears and feasting on the fruits of the tree's labor.

Creating an extended relationship between a student and his subject of study is one of the most effective and exciting teaching methods. It is far better than the typical institutional model, where…

Tree Climbing Championship Draws Near

Registration for the 11th Annual 2008 Georgia Arborist Association Tree Climbing Championship is filling up fast. The event, to be held Saturday, March 1, is at:
The United Methodist Children’s Home
500 South Columbia Drive
Decatur, GA 30030As always, admission to the event is free and the public is encouraged to come and experience the thrill of competitive tree climbing. These types of events are a great way to see the skill and professionalism required in tree work.

There will be sponsors and prizes for the event. Companies such as Vermeer, Premier Tree Care, Davey, Bartlett, Stihl, American Chainsaw, Rayfield Tree Care, Bishop co., and Baileys have either donated resources or have offered valable prizes to the contestants. Anyone interested in sponsoring or donating can do so online at the GAA website.

Much preparation of the event site is required. Trees need to be pruned, blocks set in trees, ropes run, and competition areas delineated. Anyone interested to volunteer for the Site…

Trees Recommended for Screening

Erica Glasener is recommending the perfect trees for screening in the Atlanta area. As homes get larger and lot sizes seem to shrink, there is less space between houses to plant. Glasener, writing in an article published today in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, recommends some unusual exciting varieties and some old favorites that will work in small and medium-sized landscapes. Her hot list of trees includes:
'Little Gem' Magnolia
'Bright N Tight' Cherry laurel
Hinoki cypress
Italian cypress
For smaller, narrow spaces, Glasener recommends:
'Stricta' Norway spruce
'Sky Rocket' Rocky Mountain juniper
'Fastigia' Japanese plum yew
'Sky Pencil' Holly
Bamboo planted in large pots (to avoid spreading)
Deciduous trees are often forgotten. Varieties of European Hornbeam and European Beech, closely spaced, make dandy lattice-like barriers in the winter, and transform into dense walls in the summer. For the full article, go to