Forest pests: Where is the threat?

by Loose Leaf Contributor

By Faith Campbell, Emeritus environmental advocate and tree-pest expert

As I said in my previous blog, many damaging pests enter the United States by hiding inside wood packaging material (WPM) such as crates and pallets.

What types of imports pose the greatest risk of carrying unwanted insect pests in crates and pallets? Heavy items, such as machinery (including electronics); metals; and tiles and decorative stone (such as marble or granite counter tops). Indeed, more pests have been found in wood supporting tiles and stone than any other type of commodity in 24 of the past 25 years.1

Which parts of... (Read More)

Shipping containers: Importing insect pests, too

by Loose Leaf Contributor
The Asian longhorned beetle (above) and the emerald ash borer are wreaking havoc on American forests.

By Faith Campbell, Emeritus environmental advocate and tree-pest expert

Several of the most damaging tree-killing insects came to America as larvae riding in crates, pallets, or other forms of wood packaging material (WPM).

These include the Asian longhorned beetle (ALB), emerald ash borer, and redbay ambrosia beetle. All entered the country since trade opened with China in the late 1980s. The ALB and EAB entered before our government had adopted effective measures to prevent pests from being transported in WPM.

Responding to discovery of the ALB, U.S. and Canadian officials worked with European an... (Read More)

Trees and Weatherization

by American Forests
Windbreak trees at Methwold Common. Rows of trees, usually poplars, are common features on the Fens. They act as windbreaks, a type of "greening."

By John-Miguel Dalbey

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 ... (Read More)

The Importance of Core Forests

by American Forests
A series of dune habitats in Indiana have been fragmented by roadways

By John-Miguel Dalbey

A 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 membe... (Read More)

Community ReLeaf in Action

by American Forests
Community ReLeaf in Asbury Park

By Maria Harwood

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 tr... (Read More)