Tag: urban forests

Videos: NCUFC Public Service Announcements Emphasize Trees’ Importance

The North Carolina Urban Forest Council (NCUFC) released two public service announcements to encourage communities across the state to properly plant, protect, and care for urban trees – the trees where we live, work and play.

The announcements helped support efforts of North Carolina Arbor Day on March 19 and National Arbor Day on April 30. They were partially funded by the North Carolina Forest Service.

The Importance of Urban Trees: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kMAPKvW-wtI

The Importance of Proper Tree Care: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tHL0ymU8u_k

“Trees are often the answer to economic, health, safety, and environmental issues all communities face,” said Leslie Moorman, NCUFC Executive Director. “North Carolina communities participate in wonderful planting and tree care projects every Arbor Day, but we encourage them to go further and plant and protect urban trees year-round.”

Trees in all North Carolina cities and towns help:

  • Clean the air and water;

  • Save energy;

  • Create healthy lifestyles; and

  • Stimulate the state’s economy.

According to a study US Urban Forest Statistics, Values, and Projections by David J. Nowak and Eric J. Greenfield, North Carolina’s urban forest saves the state $706.9 million a year by removing air pollution and helping avoid energy and emissions use. Research also proves spending time around trees and looking at trees reduces stress, lowers blood pressure, and improves mood – valuable benefits for people during the pandemic.

“We must properly care for and protect our urban trees every day to continuously get their benefits,” said Moorman. “We can all help North Carolina be green for generations to come.”

To properly care for urban trees:

  • Plant trees at their correct depths;

  • Place thin layers of mulch away from tree trunks;

  • Make proper pruning cuts; and

  • Hire a certified arborist to help if needed.

Residents can visit ncufc.org for a Tree Owner’s Manual, to find out how to hire an arborist, for more information about NCUFC programs, or to become a sponsor or member.

The North Carolina Urban Forest Council (NCUFC) consists of individuals, citizen groups, nonprofit organizations, businesses, and agencies from around the state that share an interest in community and urban forestry. 

NCUFC is a nonprofit organization that helps communities strengthen the efforts of local groups by serving as a resource, a forum for networking and discussion, and an advocate of the urban forest. The Council seeks to encourage and support these communities in their urban forest management efforts. For more information, visit ncufc.org.


Video: (Urban) Forest Proud

Forest Proud celebrates the omni importance of forests, including urban forests, as demonstrated by the accompanying video.

“Our mission is to build trust and support to manage, harvest, conserve, and play in North America’s forests in ways that address key societal challenges.” the website notes.

“We are a diverse community of forest stewards responsible for shaping the future of North America’s forests. We value the renewable products and benefits they provide us and are committed to making choices that keep forests as forests.”  

Learn more at forestprod.org.

U.S. Forest Service Updates Nation’s Urban Forest Inventory

UFIAThe U.S. Forest Service is continuing to annually inventory and monitor the nation’s urban forests, an activity initiated by the 2014 Farm Bill. In its 2016 Business Report, The Forest Service notes, “Urban forests are the trees and other vegetation growing along streets and waterways, around buildings, in backyards and parks of our cities and towns…. For the purposes of Forest Industry and Analysis (FIA) sampling, urban forests are those treed areas nested within U.S. Census CBSA’s (metropolitan areas), UAUC (urban areas and clusters), and city/places.

Urban FIA (UFIA) started with two cities in 2014: Baltimore, MD, and Austin, TX. In 2015, data collection in both Austin and Baltimore continued and UFIA expanded data collection to include Milwaukee and Madison, WI; Houston, TX; Des Moines, IA; Providence, RI; and St. Louis, MO. Data collection expanded to include Chicago was added in 2016, as well as Burlington, VT;
Rochester, NY; Pittsburgh, PA; Cleveland, OH; Kansas City and Springfield, MO.

In 2017, all four FIA units will have active UFIA projects in operation as the program expands into San Diego, CA; Denver and Colorado Springs, CO; Lincoln, NE; Philadelphia, PA; Detroit, MI; Wichita, KS; Fargo, ND; Portland, ME; and Minneapolis, MN. In 2018, data collection will include New York City, NY; Portland, OR; and Dover, DE.

Read the Forest Service’s 2016 Business Report.

Treecycle America Entrepreneur Forges an Urban Wood Network

Treecycle AmericaUsually when a tree care service, sawmill or custom woodworking business takes a shining to urban wood, the owner sets out to forge a network to sustain his business.

Treecycle America of Charlotte, NC, takes the opposite approach. The company was launched to create an urban wood network of tree care, sawmill and woodworking vendors to put felled and fallen trees in the greater Charlotte area to their best possible use. The company’s website proclaims that Treecycle America is a “Certified Urban Forestry & Local Marketplace. A collaborative network of certified architects, designers, developers, municipalities, arborists, sawmills, woodworkers, and makers embracing the common goal of using urban trees to their fullest potential.”

One of the novelties of Treecycle America’s Market, is its TreeID chain of custody system. It allows consumers to view the map and history of the trees used to create products. The product mix includes kiln-dried lumber, live edge slabs, furniture, fireplace mantels, DIY kits and handmade artisan crafts.

Damon Barron, co-founder of Treecycle America, was a featured speaker at the 2015 TEDx conference in Charlotte. The TED conferences are infamous for featuring speakers at the forefront of the convergence of Technology, Entertainment and Design. Each speaker is required to present their topic in 18 minutes or less. Barron accomplished his spiel in less than 12 minutes based on the video below.

Barron, who accumulated more than 15 years in commercially forested lumber and wood products, said, “I see a vision to the future of 10 billion inhabitants and the need to pay more attention to the local resource at hand, regardless where that might be.”

Learn more about Treecycle America at treecycleamerica.com

Arborist Pursues His Passion with Urban Wood Start-up


By Rich Christianson

Dobnick Timberworks has joined the Illinois urban wood movement, opening up a lumber and custom wood products business in Oswego, IL.

The company is owned by certified arborist Brandon Dobnick and his wife, Marlana. Dobnick Timberworks operates a portable sawmill and offers 16-plus species of urban wood up to 16 feet long and 56 inches wide including ash, red and white oak, silver maple, Turkish hazelnut and pecan to name a few. Lumber products are available rough sawn to finished and green, air or kiln dried. The company also crafts live-edge custom wood products.

“One hundred percent of our wood is locally sourced and many with unique storylines behind them,” Dobnick said. “We hope to continue to see more and more urban wood become utilized.”

The Dobnick Timberworks website waxes poetic about the beauty and value of the urban forest and urban wood. The company’s mission statement is illustrative.

“Our Mission is to continue the legacy of our living landscapes through sustainably recycling urban trees by finding their highest purpose. We refuse to harvest any of our wood solely for its raw timber value, rather, a hundred percent of our wood has been harvested from trees within our urban landscapes which have died and/or needed to be removed for reasons other than timber value, i.e. Dutch elm disease, emerald ash borer, and other issues. All of our wood is harvested/collected locally within a fifty mile radius.

“We seek to advocate for proper tree care management practices, encourage planting trees, and enhancing the environment by seeking to minimize our carbon footprint while sequestering carbon through utilizing our wood products within our everyday spaces. We seek to unveil the stories hidden within urban trees’ unconventional character and gain patterns by creating slabs, lumber, and custom pieces which not only tell a story, but breathe life into their spaces.”

Learn more at dobnicktimberworks.com.

Enter the Urban Wood Products Showcase

Urban wood, IIT

The Urban Wood Products Showcase will include student works crafted from community trees.

Woodworking professionals, novices and students alike are invited to submit projects to be displayed and judged at the Bringing the Urban Wood Full Circle Conference, Friday, March 18 at Hamburger University in Oak Brook, IL.

The Urban Wood Products Showcase is an opportunity to show off your craftsmanship, designer’s eye and passion for putting urban wood to good use to an attentive audience of attendees from all links of the urban wood market chain.

Entries are being accepted for the Urban Products Wood Showcase through Tuesday, March 1. Product categories include Furniture/Cabinets, Specialty Wood Products and Student works. In addition, a variety of hardwood lumber samples milled from local community trees, plus industrial uses of urban wood, will be displayed.

Conference participants will vote for their favorite entries; winners of the Peoples Choice will grab a share of the $500 cash prize. In addition, all entrants will gain valuable exposure not only at the conference but by having photos of their projects posted on illinoisurbanwood.org.

Click here for additional information and a link to the entry form.

Please direct any questions to John Lough of the Illinois Wood Utilization Team at jlough.illinoiswut@gmail.com; 773-640-4768.

Coming Attractions: Saving America’s Urban Forests

Trees-in-Trouble-2The battle to save America’s urban forests from being wiped out by the emerald ash borer takes front stage center in a new documentary film, “Trees in Trouble: Saving America’s Urban Forests.”

Trees in Trouble tells the story of America’s urban and community forests including their history; growing importance to our health, economy and environment; and the serious threats they now face to the emerald ash borer scourge and other calamities.

Saving America’s Urban Forests tells the compelling story of how one community near Cincinnati, OH, confronted their tree crisis and fought the invasive pest by taking action and joining together. Through partnerships with scientists, city officials and everyday citizens, this community was able to fight the pest and protect its urban forests for future generations. The film also explores the rich history of urban forestry in the United States and the exciting new research linking human health and trees.

The 27-minute film is directed by Andrea Torrice and is available for purchase or rental at www.bullfrogfilms.com. Reduced rates are available for activist and grassroots groups. Contact Bullfrog Films at 800-543-3764 for more info or visit treesintrouble.com.


USDA Webcast Series Tracks Urban Wood Market Developments

Urban-Wood-Webcast-1.10-15A free webcast updating wood utilization activities in Baltimore, southeast Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Kansas and Georgia is available on demand from the Wood Education and Resource Center (WERC).

The webcast, recorded Oct. 13, is the 10th in a series available for binge watching on WERC’s website. The first webcast in the series was produced in October 2011.

Edith Makra, chairperson of the Illinois Wood Utilization Team, has been a regular presenter during the life of the series.

Here’s a link to the October 13, 2015: Urban Wood Utilization Webcast.

Click http://www.na.fs.fed.us/werc/eab.shtm to access the Webcast archives.


Illinois Wood Utilization Team States Its Case for Urban Wood at IAA Event

IAA 33rd Annual Conference & Tradeshow, Urban Wood

The Demonstration Tree was the center of exhibit floor education for climbing and chainsaw maintenance tips.

By Rich Christianson

Members of the Illinois Wood Utilization Team (IL WUT) were active participants at the Illinois Arborist Association’s 33rd Annual Conference and Trade Show, Oct. 19-21 in Tinley Park, IL.

IL WUT showcased 20 board samples of urban wood lumber at its exhibit booth, including ash, red and white oak, elm, cherry, box elder and more. Arborists and other attendees who visited the  IL WUT booth got a hands-on opportunity to see and feel high-quality lumber sliced from felled urban trees.

IL WUT is a strong advocate of putting urban wood trees lost to insect infestation, weather, old age or other end-of-life causes to their highest possible use. This includes the potential for using locally sourced urban wood to manufacture cabinets, furniture, flooring and other wood products such as the ash “Wonderboy” baseball bat that drew a lot of attention at IL WUT’s booth during the show.

The IAA Conference & Tradeshow drew hundreds of municipal and commercial tree care specialists from throughout the state. Many of the attendees took home a flyer passed out at the IL WUT booth promoting the “Bringing the Urban Forest Full Circle” conference scheduled for March 18, 2016 at Hamburger University in Oak Brook. The unique event will provide a vital forum for all urban forestry stakeholders to address the steps needed to create and sustain a viable value-added market for urban lumber.

View the Bringing-the-Urban-Forest-Full-Circle-Save-the-Date-Promo.

Several IL WUT members’ organizations exhibited at the show, including Peggy Drescher, Midwest outreach coordinator of the Tree Care Industry Association; Bob Benjamin, outreach coordinator at USDA/APHIS/PPQ and Bruce Horigan, owner of Horigan Urban Forest Products.

IL WUT members lending a hand at the IL WUT booth included Rich Christianson, IL WUT conference director; Paul Deizman, CF, forest stewardship & forest legacy of IDNR; Tom Gargrave, regional forester for IDNR; Steve Lane, GIS coordinator for Graf Tree Care; and Jim Semelka, arborist for Sterling Tree Solutions.

Lane also moderated conference sessions, while team member Scott Schirmer, plant and pesticide specialist supervisor for the Illinois Department of Agriculture, was the featured presenter of “Nursery Inspection: Why They Are Important; How Do They Affect You?”

The IAA Conference ran three days with presentations devoted to topics including Electrical Hazard Awareness Program, Tree Disorder Diagnosis, Status of Urban Forestry in the State of Illinois and Oak Forest Restoration Along the Rural-Urban Interface.

For more information about the Illinois Arborist Association, visit http://illinoisarborist.org.

Stihl Tour des Trees Supports Urban Forests

Stihl Tour des Trees. Urban ForestEighty-five cyclists participating in the annual Stihl Tour des Trees scheduled for Oct. 25-31 will help raise money to benefit the urban forest. Just over a week before the 561-mile bike hike from Orlando to Fort Lauderdale, FL, was set to begin, more than $575,000 had been raised.

Tree plantings and community engagement are hallmarks of every Tour. Professor Elwood Pricklethorn (aka Toronto arborist and veteran Tour cyclist Warren Hoselton) will provides educational programs for young audiences along the way.The Tour also adds new trees to the growing urban forest planted by its cyclists.

Since 1992, the Tour des Trees has generated more than $7.2 million and has funded a variety of research projects and educational programs for budding tree care specialists provided through treefund.org.

To learn more about the Tour des Trees, visit stihltourdestrees.org.