Trees and Weatherization


by John-Miguel Dalbey
Windbreak trees at Methwold Common. Rows of trees, usually poplars, are common features on the Fens. They act as windbreaks, a type of "greening."The end of winter doesn’t officially come until March 21, and as Winter Storm Wiley proved in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic, cold temperatures and heavy snowfall can still trigger tree-related problems and fixes. This winter’s major snow events, high winds and cold temperatures have many people turning their attention to “weatherizing” their homes from the elements. Given rising heating costs, increasing home efficiency is both the cheapest and most sustainable means of doing so. An eco-friendly, low-cost way to weatherize your property is to plant a windbreak of trees around your home or, as mentioned in a previous blog post, e... (Read More)



The Importance of Core Forests


by John-Miguel Dalbey
A series of dune habitats in Indiana have been fragmented by roadwaysA bill has been introduced in the Pennsylvania House which would make it easier for industries such as gas to drill and develop in forests that could possibly be home to endangered plants or animals or other sensitive species. The ecological significance of “core forests” — forests surrounded by other forests — cannot be overstated. Compared to “fringe” forests or habitats —those surrounded by human development such as towns or roads — core forests provide a much more stable home for species, protecting biodiversity. The continuity of the ecosystem allows individual members of a species to have a wider range in which to sea... (Read More)



Community ReLeaf in Action


by Maria Harwood
Community ReLeaf in Asbury Park This fall, we ventured out into the communities of our five 2013 Community ReLeaf project cities and rolled up our sleeves for some hard work! Thanks to the support of our project partners, Bank of America and the U.S. Forest Service along with 169 local community volunteers, we were able to put 175 trees in the ground, enhancing urban forests across the country. In addition to the tree plantings, assessments of the urban forests in our project cities were performed to analyze different aspects of the canopy cover and benefits to the local communities realized from investments in urban trees. The results so far speak volumes about the ... (Read More)



The Arbor Advisor


by the Loose Leaf team
Terrill Collier tree climbing.Each year, the International Society of Arborists (ISA) recognizes several arborists as “True Professionals of Arboriculture” for their unique contributions to the field. These arborists do not limit themselves to tree care, but also work to educate and reach out to the local community about the importance of urban forests. As the New Year draws closer, Loose Leaf will dedicate each Monday in December to one of 2013’s five True Professionals in appreciation of their work and the work of arborists everywhere on behalf of our trees. We’ll start by taking a look at the life and work of second-generation arborist Terrill Collier, a ... (Read More)



Lessons Learned: The Need for Future Research on Urban Forests


by Maria Harwood
National Academy of SciencesEarlier this year, our director of Urban Forest Programs, Melinda Housholder, attended a workshop hosted by the National Academy of Sciences titled “Urban Forestry: Toward an Ecosystem Services Research Agenda” and blogged about a few of the presentations she was able to attend. Recently, the workshop summary was published online, free to download as a PDF, detailing not only the individual presentations, but also the necessary next steps to further our understanding of urban forests and their associated ecosystem benefits. It was determined that the key mechanisms behind ecosystem functions need to continue to be explored, so we c... (Read More)