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Phone: 503-823-PLAY (7529)

Fax: 503-823-6007

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Portland Parks & Recreation Urban Forestry News and Activities 

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Roseway Tree Walk on the NE 72nd Avenue Park Blocks

By Mason Wordell, Urban Forestry Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps Member

Join Urban Forestry and Roseway Tree Team for an interesting and informative
tree walk along the NE 72nd Avenue park blocks!

When: 9:30 - 11:30 am on Saturday Feb. 25th, 2017
Location: Meet at Ira's Deli | 7215 NE Prescott St.
Register Here: http://tinyurl.com/RosewayWalk

Agenda
9:30 am - 10 am: Register, sign in, have a cup of coffee
10 am - 11:30 am: Walk & Talk with Urban Forestry Staff Jim Gersbach and Neighborhood Tree Steward Catherine Clark

Throughout the walk, they will be highlighting the benefits and beauty of conifers and broadleaf evergreens, along with other new deciduous trees in the blocks. Jim and Catherine will share the history of the blocks, with a focus on new plantings. Our urban tree canopy provides important ecosystem services, such as:

  • Mitigating storm-water runoff
  • Improving air quality
  • Producing oxygen
  • Reducing heating and cooling costs
  • Providing habitat and food for wildlife

Mature trees are also associated with improved health and social outcomes. Evergreen trees provide these benefits year-round, and are additionally important in providing winter shelter for urban wildlife.

Despite the advantages of evergreens, a recently completed street tree inventory carried out by Urban Forestry and 1,300 volunteers shows that in developed parts of the city, 90% to 98% or more of the street trees are deciduous, and the majority of these are small or medium size. Many of the new trees planted on the park blocks will attain very large size, thus contributing more benefits than smaller trees. Other trees recently planted on the Roseway park blocks are flowering trees with late spring or summer bloom times. This later blooming period extends the availability of nectar for pollinators. Other trees were planted to provide seeds and nuts relished by birds, squirrels, and other animals that share our urban environment.

Read on for some brief tree descriptions of the trees we will be discussing during our walk.

  1. Colossal Hybrid ChestnutCastanea x ‘Colossal’
    Colossal is the most common chestnut cultivar grown in the Pacific Northwest. It grew popular because it produces big crops of large, sweet-tasting nuts.
  2. Purple CatalpaCatalpa x erubescens ‘Purpurea’
    The Purple Catalpa is striking due to the purple color of the new leaves in spring. Bears flowers at a young age that are trumpet shaped, white with purple and yellow spotting in the throats
  3. Common Hackberry - Celtis occidentalis
    Hackberry is an alternate-branching, deciduous tree growing 50–80' tall. It bears numerous sweet red then purple pea-sized berries that birds love.
  4. Chinese Fringe Tree - Chionanthus retusus
    Showy white flowers in spring have fringe-like petals, giving the tree its common name. The tree is adaptable to a wide range of environmental conditions, including moderate drought, air pollution and clay soil. It has been cultivated in Western countries since 1845, and its Chinese name is liu su shu.
  5. American Yellowwood - Cladrastis kentukea
    In late May-early June the tree blooms spectacularly with wisteria-like white flowers in clusters 12-14” long at the ends of twigs. This deciduous broadleaf tree is one of the rarer U.S. trees in the wild and is found most commonly along streams draining the western slopes of the Allegheny Mountains in Tennessee and Kentucky.
  6. Rivers’ Purple European Beech - Fagus sylvatica ‘Riversii’
    They are the climax tree in European forests, where their nuts were an important source of food to fatten pigs in autumn. The English word for “book” comes from the old Anglo-Saxon name for the tree, whose smooth bark was used to write on before paper.\
  7. Princeton Sentry Ginkgo - Ginkgo biloba 'Princeton Sentry'
    This male clone is upright 50' to 65' tall and 15' to 20' wide, with the classic fan-shaped leaves Like other ginkgos, this is resistant to many pests and pathogents and tolerates urban conditions.
  8. Natchez Crape Myrtle - Lagerstroemia x 'Natchez'
    One of the most commonly planted hybrid crape myrtles because of its rich, cinnamon red-brown exfoliating bark, big panicles of showy white summer flowers; red-orange fall color; excellent resistance to powdery mildew; enhanced cold hardiness; and upright growth to 30' with a spread of 35'.
  9. Oregon White Oak - Quercus garryana
    Oregon white oak was once one of the predominant trees in the Willamette Valley, but has declined to only 1% of its original range due to clearing of land for agriculture and cessation in the 19th century of underbrush burning by Native Americans. The tree’s nickname, Garry oak, is after Nicholas Garry (circa 1782-1856), the deputy governor of Hudson’s Bay Company who helped botanist David Douglas in his planting hunting in Oregon.
  10. Silverleaf Oak - Quercus hypoleucoides
    The tree’s lance-shaped leaves are dark gray above and silver underneath. They grow at elevations from 5,000’ to 7,000’ in northern Mexico’s Sonora and Chihuahua states, and across the border in the mountains of New Mexico, Arizona and west Texas.
  11. Chinkapin Oak - Quercus muehlenbergii
    They superficially resemble a chestnut leaf, hence the tree’s common name – chinkapin being a common name for an American chestnut. Chinkapin Oak has one of the widest natural distributions of any North American oak. It is unusual for most oaks as it tolerates alkaline, limestone soils.
  12. Monterrey Oak / Mexican White Oak - Quercus polymorpha
    An evergreen broadleaf tree native to northern Mexico. Monterrey oak requires full sun but is very tolerant of heat and very drought tolerant, even when relatively young.
  13. Northern Red Oak - Quercus rubra
    The acorns, which take two years to mature, are an important food source for wildlife, especially squirrels that like to bury and store acorns in the fall. It is the state tree of New Jersey and the provincial tree of Canada's Prince Edward Island.
  14. Island Oak - Quercus tomentella
    It has leathery 2-4" oval leaves, that are dark green on top and gray-green with tan hairs below, although they become less wooly with age. It is considered a relict population that originally had a wider range on the West Coast. Along with canyon live oak (Q. chrysolepis) it is a member of Protobalanus, the oaks intermediate between the red and white oaks.
  15. Southern Live Oak - Quercus virginiana
    Live oak has strong wood, a deep taproot, and an extensive root system, making it exceptionally stable in high winds. The small acorns (1/2 inch to 1 inch long) are shiny, ranging in color from tan-brown to nearly black.
  16. Giant Sequoia - Sequoiadendron giganteum
    Giant sequoias are the world's largest tree by volume. Millions of years ago the trees were widespread around the planet, growing in the Arctic during warmer periods in Earth's history. The trees eventually died out everywhere but in the Sierra Nevada of California, however Giant sequoias grow vigorously in western Oregon and have few pests or diseases.

Still reading? Join us as we explore the exciting new large-canopy, pollinator-friendly and evergreen trees in Roseway. Register here!
For more information, or if you have something you want to talk about, contact:

Mason Wordell, Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps member
Mason.Wordell@PortlandOregon.gov 
503-201-3133 

Upcoming Workshop: Great Tree Choices for Alameda & Beaumont-Wilshire

By Mason Wordell, Urban Forestry Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps Member

Arbutus menziesii – Pacific MadroneArbutus menziesii – Pacific Madrone

Join Urban Forestry and the Alameda and Beaumont-Wilshire Tree Teams
for an enlightening presentation on tree options available to you! 

When: 9:00 am - 11:00 am, January 28th 2017
Where: Wilshire United Methodist Native American Fellowship | 3917 NE Shaver St, Portland, OR 97212 
Register Here: http://tinyurl.com/ABWDiversity

Agenda
9:00 am - 9:15 am: Register, sign in, have a cup of coffee
9:15 am - 10:45 am: Presentation and walk with Patrick Key
10:45 am- 11:00 am: Wrap-up, clean-up

Alameda and Beaumont-Wilshire are both beautiful neighborhoods regarded for their mature and impressive trees. An important part in helping maintain the wonderful community trees that we love is by planting new trees, which will eventually replace the mature trees that may die in the next coming decades. 

Choosing a tree can be a difficult and daunting choice – which is why we invite you to join us to learn more about selecting the right tree for the right place! Join us to discuss trees that are adaptable, beautiful, and low maintenance. We’ll also cover the advantages of choosing less common trees and how they can help diversify your neighborhood. Whether you’re a first time planter, or a veteran tree hugger, there is something everyone can learn in this workshop.

In this presentation, Patrick Key will cover species that are considered low risk for diseases and pests, which continues to be important as we experience tree loss from the Bronze Birch Borer and growing concern over the Emerald Ash Borer. We’ll discuss which trees will perform well in our region with its wet winters and dry summers. Due to this season's damaging ice storms, we’ll cover trees that are less prone to storm damage. The presentation will dig into the many options of trees, and outline some of the benefits of each type of tree. For instance, flowers, fall color, and fruits and nuts for wildlife are just a few characteristics to consider when choosing a tree.

All of the trees that Key will cover are available through Friends of Trees, a local tree-planting non-profit. Friends of Trees offers trees at prices well below typical retail nurseries, and they organize neighborhood work parties to help homeowners get their trees in the ground.

Friends of Trees will be planting in Alameda on March 4, 2017. Folks must sign up for the planting day by January 30th, and have their trees ordered by February 13th. Friends of Trees will be planting with Beaumont-Wilshire later in the year on April 1st, 2017. The sign-up deadline is February 27th, and the tree order deadline is March 13th

In addition to covering some of the trees you may wish to plant, the presentation will weave together the city-wide and neighborhood specific data (Alameda, Beaumont-Wilshire) from the recently completed Street Tree Inventory. For example, did you know that there are 142 tree genera in all of Portland? That is an impressive range of tree diversity. However, over half the city’s street trees were found in just the top 10 genera. We can do better by planting a variety of tree species, and together, we can increase the diversity of trees in Portland. Please join Alameda and Beaumont-Wilshire Tree Team and Urban Forestry at this workshop to learn more!

Still Reading? Make sure to Register!

For more information, or if you have something you want to talk about, contact:

Mason Wordell
Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps member
Mason.Wordell@PortlandOregon.gov 
503-201-3133 

Workshop this Saturday: Selecting Trees for your Home

Learn all about amazing trees!

Join the Grant Park and Hollywood Tree Teams for a presentation by Urban Forestry Tree Expert Jim Gersbach on how to choose great trees. 

When:  Saturday, January 14, 2017; 10-11:30am (sign-in with coffee and tea at 9:30am)

Where: Grant Park Church, 2728 NE 34th Ave, Portland OR   

Register here!

fall foliage 

Explore the world of trees through this enlightening presentation on tree options available for the upcoming Friends of Trees planting in the Grant Park and Hollywood neighborhoods (March 4th). Whether you have signed up for this planting, are considering signing up or just want to learn more about the world of trees beyond those typically found at the nursery, this workshop will provide a better understanding of the many considerations when choosing a tree. Learn about visual characteristics (flowers, fall colors, fruits and nuts) and environmental benefits (wildlife habitats and ecosystem functions) of various tree species and why diversity is important to the health of our urban forest (resilience to pests and disease).

Informed by the recently completed street tree inventory, this presentation will also show how choosing the "right tree for the right place" can ensure that your tree stands tall and strong for decades to come. Imagine that! The tree that you plant today can make a lasting contribution to the air quality and character of tomorrow's urban forest!  

For more information, please contact Mason.Wordell@portlandoregon.gov.

Still reading? Sign up for the workshop today! http://tinyurl.com/GPHWdiversity

Tree Pruning Work Party with the Albina Neighborhood Tree Team

By Mason Wordell, Urban Forestry Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps Member

                       Join Urban Forestry and the Albina Neighborhood Tree Team (ANTT)
for a pruning workshop and work party!

When: 8:30-12:00pm January 7th, 2017
Where: Sons of Haiti Masonic Lodge & Food Cart Pod | N Mississippi Ave. & NE Fremont St. 

Click here to register!

Agenda:
8:30 – 9:00 am – Sign-in, coffee & bagels
9:00 – 9:45 am – Pruning Demonstration
10:00 – 11:45 am – Pruning neighborhood trees in small groups
11:45 – 12:00pm – Return and wrap up. 

Portland Urban Forestry and ANTT are partnering to offer this street tree pruning workshop to improve tree health and walkability in the area.  Pruning is an important part of tree care and maintenance, and everyone is welcome to participate in this workshop to learn more about how they can actively care for their trees.  Knowing when to prune and what to look for can help you make successful cuts that will help cultivate beautiful, structurally sound, and long living trees.  

When we plant a tree, we hope that it will grow tall and straight; that it will have a full, healthy crown with strong, well-spaced branches; that it will cast a broad expanse of sheltering shade; that it will resist damage by wind and ice; and that it will be easy to maintain. Without proper pruning, however, a tree can become unhealthy and expensive to maintain. An unmaintained or poorly maintained tree is more likely to become hazardous, with branches that break during storms, have weak and unsightly shoots, and interfere with traffic, pedestrians and overhead wires. To ensure that Portland’s urban forest continues to enhance our daily lives, we must properly care for the young trees we plant.

If you are ever interested in pruning your street tree, your first step is to secure a free pruning permit from Urban Forestry. Depending on the kind of pruning you need to do, you can either decide to prune the tree yourself or hire an arborist. Urban Forestry has a list of tree care professionals that can help you if you have a large, mature tree in need of pruning. At our workshop, we’ll cover the basics of how to prune young trees. Listed below are several goals to keep in mind when you are considering pruning a street tree.

1. Young tree pruning - Young trees should be pruned to develop good structure, including a strong and well established central leader, strong branch attachments, and adequate spacing and distribution of scaffold branches. While there are several types of trees that do not have one leader, many street trees have once central leader (or stem). Removing or reducing co-dominate branches encourages a strong leader, which is important for tree structure. Trees with large, co-dominate leaders are more likely to fail or split during stormy weather or heavy snow fall. Young tree pruning will need to occur on an ongoing basis over the first ten years after tree planting.

In the image to the left, the letters indicate the following kinds of cuts for a tree 3-4 years after planting. A: Remove branches that are heading back into the tree. B: Remove branches that are rubbing. C: Eliminate branches with narrow angles. D: Remove suckers from around the base of the trees whenever they emerge.  Image courtesy of Urban Forestry.

Letters indicate the following kinds of cuts for a tree 3-4 years after planting. A: Remove branches that are heading back into the tree. B: Remove branches that are rubbing. C: Eliminate branches with narrow angles. D: Remove suckers from around the base of the trees whenever they emerge.  Image courtesy of Urban Forestry.

2. Crown Cleaning - The removal of water sprouts, and dead, dying, diseased, crowded, weakly attached, and low vigor branches from the tree’s crown. A sucker is a shoot which grows from a bud at the base of a tree or from its roots. Pruning suckers or ‘water sprouts’ early will help keep the base of the tree clear for pedestrians, and also reduce the energy that a tree is putting into unnecessary growth. . Removing dead, dying, or diseased branches can prevent rot or insects from entering the tree and damaging the tree tissue. In addition, removing dead or dying branches can reduce the hazard of falling branches during stormy weather. You can prune these branches anytime in the year without fear of harming the tree.

3. Crown Raisingthe removal of lower branches of a tree in order to provide clearance for vehicles, pedestrians, and buildings.  Street trees are subject to codes that regulate how low a branch can be. Branches must be at least 7 ½ feet high off the ground when above the sidewalk, 11 feet high on residential streets, and 14 feet above main arterial streets. Pruning these branches helps create safe clearance and visibility for all pedestrians and drivers.

Branches must be at least 7 ½ feet high off the ground when above the sidewalk, 11 feet high on residential streets, and 14 feet above main arterial streets. Images courtesy of Urban Forestry.

4. Crown restoration - used to improve the structure, form, and appearance of trees that have sprouted vigorously after being broken, topped, or severely pruned using heading cuts. Crown restoration may require several prunings over a number of years as new dominant branches take time to form.

You never want to remove more than 25% of a tree’s crown during a single pruning session. Removing any more can damage a tree permanently, and severely slow its growth. In general, it is best to prune trees in the winter, and encourages vigorous growth in the spring. Pruning during the spring and summer removes leaves that produce food and energy for the tree, and can slow tree growth.

If you find this interesting, I encourage you to start the New Year right and join the Albina Neighborhood Tree Team (ANTT) and Urban Forestry for the first pruning workshop of the year! Make a difference in your neighborhood and connect with tree lovers during this informative and fun workshop.

Certified Arborists can receive 3 hours of ISA CEUs for participating and leading small groups. Contact nik.desai@portlandoregon.gov  for details!

View the City’s official pruning standards.

For more information, or if you have something you want to talk about, contact:
Mason Wordell
Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps member
Mason.Wordell@PortlandOregon.gov
(503) 201-3133

Want to learn more about ANTT?
Contact albinaneighborhoodtreeteam@gmail.com
Or visit their website at www.albinatrees.org

Upcoming Community Workshop: Great Tree Choices for Your Home with the Concordia Tree Team

By Mason Wordell, Urban Forestry Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps Member

Join Urban Forestry and the Concordia Tree team for a free workshop on
how to select the right tree for your home while also promoting tree diversity!

When: 6:30 – 8:30pm, January 5, 2017
Where: Kennedy School | Community Room | 5736 NE 33rd Ave., Portland
Register Here: http://tinyurl.com/ConDiversity

Agenda:
6:30 – 7:00pm - Sign-in, have a cup of tea
7:00 – 8:30 – Presentation by Jim Gersbach, Urban Forestry Staff

Choosing a tree can be a difficult and daunting choice – which is why we invite you to join us to learn more about selecting the right tree for the right place! Join us to discuss trees that are adaptable, beautiful, and low maintenance. We’ll also cover the advantages of choosing less common trees and how they can help diversify your neighborhood. Whether you’re a first time planter, or a veteran tree hugger, there is something everyone can learn in this workshop.

In this presentation, Jim Gersbach will cover species that are considered low risk for diseases and pests, which continues to be important as we experience tree loss from the Bronze Birch Borer and growing concern over the Emerald Ash Borer. We’ll discuss which trees will perform well in our region with its wet winters and dry summers. Due to this season's damaging ice storms, we’ll cover trees that are less prone to storm damage. The presentation will dig into the many options of trees, and outline some of the benefits of each type of tree. For instance, flowers, fall color, and fruits and nuts for wildlife are just a few characteristics to consider when choosing a tree.

All of the trees that Gersbach will cover are available through Friends of Trees, a local tree-planting non-profit. Friends of Trees offers trees at prices well below typical retail nurseries, and they organize neighborhood work parties to help homeowners get their trees in the ground.

Friends of Trees will be planting in Concordia and Vernon on March 11, 2017. Folks must sign up for the planting day by February 6, and have their trees ordered by February 20.

In addition to covering some of the trees you may wish to plant, the presentation will weave together the city-wide and neighborhood specific data from the recently completed Street Tree Inventory. For example, did you know that there are 142 tree genera in all of Portland? That is an impressive range of tree diversity. However, over half the city’s street trees were found in just the top 10 genera. We can do better by planting a variety of tree species, and together, we can increase the diversity of trees in Portland. Please join the Concordia Tree Team and Urban Forestry at this workshop to learn more!

For more information, or if you have something you want to talk about, contact:

Mason Wordell, Tree Plan Coordinator and AmeriCorps member
Mason.Wordell@PortlandOregon.gov
503-201-3133

Want to learn more about the Concordia tree team? - facebook.com/Concordia-Tree-Team-456805847727560/