"Community Tree Program Update"
July 15, 2009 Community Tree Program Update Athens-Clarke County Landscape Management Division Volume 4, Issue 1 Volunteers Help Community Recover from Storm Damage The snowstorms of March 1, Post storm surveys indicated remove hazards over the 2009 had a tremendous im- extensive damage was pre- right-of-way. Other Landscape pact on the trees in Athens- sent, but they did not define crews were mobilized to clear Clarke County (ACC). Over 6” where the damage would be roads and sidewalks. Excep- of snow accumulated in tree concentrated. Volunteers from tionally tall or dangerous work canopies resulting in crown the ACC Community Tree was diverted to a contract tree Inside this issue: and branch failures. In the Council and the Athens Area service and Georgia Power days following the storm, Master Gardeners were mobi- crews. To date, 900 trees Disease Watch: Oak Leaf 2 snowmelt saturated soils re- lized to complete windshield have received hazard reduc- Blister sulting in additional whole-tree surveys. tion pruning and all of the 178 What’s New with the CTC: 2 failures. Storm-damaged trees removals have been com- The Ordinance Review Twenty-six volunteers sur- blocked roads, downed utili- pleted. Once the growing sea- Process veyed 25 mile management ties, and damaged personal son has ended, ACC will mo- The Arborist’s Corner: 2 zones and recorded the property. bilize crews to finish pruning Watering Guidelines for amount and type of damage the 260 lower priority trees. New Trees ACC had prepared for this present. The surveys identi- event by completing a storm fied 1,160 trees needing haz- Athens is fortunate to have Landmark Tree 3 damage assessment presur- ard reduction pruning, and dedicated citizens who are Conservation Grants vey. This U.S. Forest Service 178 trees needing to be re- willing to help manage their Meet Your Champion: 3 approved survey was used to moved. This data was com- community forest. The For- Chinese Tallow Tree establish a baseline for condi- piled in a GIS database and ester would like to thank the Tree to Consider: 4 tions around Athens. A post prioritized by damage density, Athens Area Master Garden- ‘Forest Pansy’ Redbud storm survey was completed area use, and user volume. ers, the ACC Community Tree after the storm. This survey Council, Georgia Power, and Special points of in- Prioritized data was issued to allowed ACC to quantify how two ACC Landscape Manage- Williams Tree Service for their terest: much damage to expect assistance with our recovery • Landscape water is most ment crews that used an ae- throughout the county. efforts. rial lift and bucket truck to efficiently used between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. ACC Tree Program Receives Federal Grant • Severe oak leaf blister out- breaks are common following Athens-Clarke County has designated as seed money focus on urban tree care, for- a cool, wet spring. received a $7,425 Urban and used to create programs that est management, and the tree Community Forestry Grant to are easily replicable by other ordinance. Documents will be • The Community Tree Council create a website for the Com- communities. available in English and Span- is currently reviewing the munity Tree Program. Urban ish. tree ordinance for potential Athens-Clarke County will and Community Forestry revisions. work with county staff, the All funding must be matched Grants are provided by the Community Tree Council, and by the grant applicant. Athens • New Urban Forestry has re- U.S. Forest Service and ad- other area professionals to was able to leverage staff time cently provided tree preser- ministered by the Georgia create a comprehensive web- and in-kind time contributions vation grants to promote the Forestry Commission. Money site for the Community Tree from volunteers to provide from this grant program is Landmark Tree Program. Program. The website will matching contributions. Disease Watch: Oak Leaf Blister Oak Leaf Blister (Taphrinia caerulescens) Infections result in severe deformation of specimen trees. Fungicides applied after is a common disease that affects many leaf tissues that give them a “bubbling” bud break are ineffective. species of oaks. In our area, water oaks appearance. Severe outbreaks can result (Quercus nigra) are most commonly in- in the premature defoliation of the tree. fected, but other red oak species can also Infections are most severe following a be infected. Oak Leaf Blister is rarely a cool, wet spring. While infection results in problem for white oaks. poor aesthetics; there is no significant impact on tree health. Since the infection does not endanger tree health, control options are not recom- mended for use in typical suburban set- tings. Cultural controls are ineffective because of the prevalence of fungal spores and the ease of transmission throughout the landscape. Ortho, Gar- dentech Daconil Fungicide Concentrate, and Monterey can be applied before bud break to control unsightly infections on What’s New with the Community Tree Council The Athens-Clarke County Community commissioners to ensure the ordinance is will be presented to the Athens-Clarke Tree Council is currently providing a peri- having the intended effect in the commu- County Legislative Review Committee. odic review of the Community Tree Man- nity. The Community Tree Council has The Legislative Review Committee will agement Ordinance. Passed in 2005, the convened a special ordinance review assess the recommendations of the Com- ordinance works to regulate the quantity, committee that works with Athens-Clarke munity Tree Council and could ask the quality, and distribution of trees through- County staff to review sites developed manager to assign staff to review any out Athens-Clarke County, so that Athens under the ordinance. Controversial sites pressing issues. Potential revisions will can maintain 45% canopy coverage. The such as the CVS on Oglethorpe Avenue be presented ordinance is designed to provide con- and the doctor’s offices on Sylvia Circle before a regularly served and planted canopy cover on sites have been closely scrutinized to see if the scheduled Mayor undergoing development. ordinance was successfully implemented and Commission on these sites. meeting. Now that the ordinance is in its fourth year of implementation, the CTC is work- The Community Tree Council is currently ing closely with Athens-Clarke County developing a list of areas of concern that The Arborist’s Corner— Watering Guidelines for New Trees On June 10, 2009 The Georgia Environ- tree – the trunk flare should remain clear A greater proportion of the applied water mental Protection Division placed the to prevent decay. is utilized by the tree with heavy watering. state on a non-drought schedule for out- Also, light waterings encourage shallow door water use for the first time since • Water the area beneath the crown of rooting which can lead to more severe June 2006. Lack of water may not imme- the tree. drought damage.” diately kill a tree, but can reduce the • According to Dr. Kim Coder, “The best tree’s defense mechanisms against pests • According to the Georgia Urban Forest ways to water trees are by soaker hose or Council, “Trees require…ten gallons of and disease, slowly killing the tree. Here trickle (drip) irrigation which you turn on are some guidelines for watering newly water per caliper inch…per week to es- and off…Even a garden hose, moved tablish.” planted trees: often, can provide a good soil soaking… • Mulch your trees with 3-4 inches of Trees should be watered once or twice a organic mulch – this keeps water from week in the growing season if there is no Melanie Graham, County Arborist evaporating and cools the roots. Don’t rainfall in that particular week. A few Planning Department mound the mulch around the trunk of the heavy (high volume) waterings are much 706-613-3515 better than many light, shallow waterings. Volume 4, Issue 1 Page 2 Local Arborists Take Interest in the Landmark Tree Program The Landmark Tree Program was in- homeowners. Voluntary registration has cords to find five potential candidate cluded in the tree ordinance to encour- allowed Athens-Clarke County to docu- trees. Grants are being awarded to age the conservation of large or histori- ment significant trees largely because Chase Street Elementary, Peter Hodg- cally significant trees. Landmark Trees homeowners have taken special interest son, and Emmanuel Episcopal Church. are receive two times actual canopy in the trees on their property. Landmark Tree application requests have credit when they are conserved during New Urban Forestry—a local arboricul- spiked with the recent publicity of the development. At its inception, all known tural company run by Certified Arborists— grants in the Athens Banner Herald. If Landmark Trees on the Athens-Clarke is now sponsoring grants to provide land- you are interested in registering a tree, County right-of-way were documented. owners with the incentive to document p l e a s e v i s i t Since then, hundreds of additional trees their Landmark Trees. New Urban For- www.athensclarkecounty.com/landscape have been documented on other public estry has offered five grants for up to or contact the Community Forester with and private properties. $1,200 worth your request. To date, there are over 1,000 Landmark of work dedi- Trees in Athens-Clarke County. Approxi- cated to the mately five sites have conserved Land- conservation "New Urban Forestry is thrilled to mark Trees during development. While of existing donate work to those who are will- the conservation and care of these aging and newly trees is not always easy, the benefits they enrolled ing to document and care for such provide to the community are enormous. Landmark historic trees. We hope the work Trees. New we do will preserve living legends Dozens of Landmark Trees have been documented on single family residential Urban For- while generating interest in the estry used Landmark Tree Program." lots. Since it is unlikely that these sites A t h e n s - will be redeveloped under the ordinance, — Kevin Hamman, New Urban Forestry C l a r k e the registration process has not previ- County re- ously had any special incentives for Meet Your Champion! Common Name: Chinese Tallow Tree Latin Name: Triadica sebifera Diameter: 29 inches Height: 58 feet Average Crown Spread: 51 feet Owner: Bob Booth Location: In the front yard of 281 North Avenue Interesting Fact(s): This tree is the biggest known specimen of its species in the nation. This tree is listed as an invasive exotic by the Southeast Exotic Pest Plant Council. Athens- Clarke County does not endorse the planting or propaga- tion of this tree. A Champion Tree is the largest representative tree of a spe- cies in the County. State and National Champion tree regis- tries are developed by state and federal agencies. You can learn more about Georgia State Champion Trees by logging on to: www.gfc.state.ga.us/forestmanagement/championtrees.cfm The Clarke County Champion Tree registry is maintained by the Athens-Clarke County Community Tree Council. If you would like to learn more about Clarke County Champion Trees, please go to www.athenstrees.com. Volume 4, Issue 1 Page 3 Athens-Clarke County Landscape Management Division Andrew Saunders Community Forestry Coordinator 350 Pound Street Athens, Georgia. 30601 The Community Forestry Coordinator is 706-613-3561 responsible for administering the Commu- firstname.lastname@example.org nity Tree Program. The Community Tree Program strives to pro-actively conserve and professionally We’re on the Web! manage the public tree resource and ac- tively support quality conservation and http://www.athensclarkecounty.com/ management of the private tree resource landscape/ for public health and safety, environ- mental health, and enhancement of our quality of life. If you have a question about trees, or if you would like a free tree management consultation please feel free to contact the Community Forestry Coordinator. Tree to Consider: ‘Forest Pansy’ Eastern Redbud (Cercis canadensis) The ‘Forest Pansy’ eastern redbud is a The ‘Forest Pansy” variety has maroon new small showy tree that is known for its ma- leaves that differentiate it from a standard roon new growth and purple flowers. The eastern redbud. These leaves are quite most common variety of this species is showy and make it an excellent selection as found in semi-shaded forest uplands. It is a specimen tree. The leaves commonly turn capable of surviving in urban soils and green later in the growing season. Like all severe drought. eastern redbuds, this variety has a fantastic purple flower that emerges prior to leaf es- tablishment in the spring . ‘Forest Pansy’ redbuds are small, irregularly growing trees that tend to become flat- topped with age. They are rapid growing trees that have a short to moderate life span (24-40 years). They are commonly multis- temmed, but can be pruned to have one central stem. This species’ small size and drought tolerance make it an excellent selec- tion for use under overhead electric lines. This species is considered to be allergy free for most people.