The Forestry Source - November 2011 - (Page 10)
West Virginia Division’s Summer Meeting Focuses on Urban Forestry
t the end of August, the West Virginia Division of the Allegheny SAF met for its summer meeting in Bluefield, which sits at the southernmost boundary of the state. Bluefield is really two cities that straddle the Virginia–West Virginia border. At one point in its history, Bluefield was the railroad gateway to the coalfields of southwest Virginia and southern West Virginia. Today, vestiges of the city’s bright and colorful past remain and serve as an inspiration for community leaders and volunteers, including the SAF members who work to maintain and improve local businesses, public services, and streetscapes. For instance, two West Virginia Division members—Tim Probert and Bob Radspinner—have served on the City Tree Board and worked, in conjunction with the Urban Forestry program of the West Virginia Division of Forestry, with various civic and beautification committees, as well as with local students from elementary to college-age for the betterment of the Bluefield environment. So, at this meeting attendees visited the area’s scenic and open-space assets to learn about the urban forestry successes and challenges that the greater Bluefield area has faced in recent years. “The West Virginia Division generally picks themes for their summer and winter meetings, and they look at various issues. Urban forestry is not one that we’ve addressed before,” said Bob Radspinner, assistant state forester for stewardship and forest management, WV Division of Forestry. “Ours is a fairly rural state, yet more than 50 percent of our population is in metropolitan areas. So we have quite a few tree boards, and we thought it would be good to expose our membership to the urban forestry issues in West Virginia.” The meeting began with a day-long field tour of the Mercer County–Bluefield area. Jerry Belcher, a local Christmas tree farmer told the more than 30 attendees the story of his farm and how he was cultivating a valuable Christmas tree, the Canaan fir—a variety of the balsam fir (Abies balsamea). It is always motivating to hear about the labor of love (and hard labor) that goes into these beautiful Christmas decorations. The USDA Forest Service State and Private Forestry’s Wood Education Resource Center (WERC) is also in the area, and there, center director and SAF mem(“Members” cont. from page 9)
Appalachian Power Company foresters discuss the challenges of working to get the idea of “right tree, right space” into practice.
ber Steve Milauskas gave an overview of the center’s history and mission and then introduced participants to Robert Kincaid, owner of Accurate Millworks, who operates a wood-blinds manufacturing firm at the center. The wood blinds are made primarily from yellow poplar and basswood; most are sold as custom jobs for clients across the United States. Following the visit to the WERC, the group drove down into Bluefield to lunch with community leaders at a local park. After lunch, Bob Hannah and Jessie Wise, urban foresters with the West Virginia Division of Forestry, demonstrated how they measure trees for the West Virginia Big Trees program. Afterward, attendees visited a small tree nursery established on city property that provides trees for city parks and streets. Later, foresters from the utility Appalachian Power spoke to attendees about their community outreach programs and how they interact with property owners to convey the idea of “right tree, right space.” The field day ended with a visit to the aweinspiring East River Mountain Overlook and a barbeque back at Pipestem State Park.
On the meeting’s second day, the activities moved indoors and attendees, who were joined by a student from West Virginia University and five students from Virginia Tech, heard presentations on various programs and aspects of urban forestry. Included in the line-up of speakers was Mark Books of Ft. AP Hill in Virginia, who discussed the successful outreach efforts with scouts at the 2010 Boy Scout Jamboree. Given that the next national Boy Scout Jamboree will be held in Beckly in 2013, Books presented ideas for SAF members in West Virginia that they could use to keep those successes coming. Anne Cumming, an urban forester with the US Forest Service, told attendees about the agency’s free urban forestry inventory software, I-Tree. Greg Dahle, assistant professor of arboriculture and urban forestry at West Virginia University, discussed the university’s new urban forestry and arboriculture program. Jill Rose, West Virginia Department of Agriculture forest health protection coordinator and forest pathologist, and Tim Tomon, West Virginia Department of Agriculture forest entomologist, briefed the group on the
pests and diseases affecting the region’s forests, such as thousand cankers disease, bacterial leaf scorch, the emerald ash borer, and the Asian longhorn beetle. Barbara White, an urban forester from the Virginia Department of Forestry, discussed the importance of tree canopies in urban areas and discussed how the Virginia Department of Forestry is working with cities and towns on urban treecanopy assessments in the commonwealth. Kevin Sigmon, an American Electric Power utility Forester and International Society of Aboriculture-certified arborist for the Town of Abingdon, Virginia, concluded the session with a discussion of the town’s urban tree canopy assessment and how the community is developing its implementation plan for increasing it. When the meeting adjourned, attendees said that they felt well educated on the urban forestry issues within the state, such as the relationship between urban forestry and utilities. “A lot of the utility companies now have full-time foresters on staff, because urban forestry is such a big issue in terms of maintaining power to homes and in that same regard, the difficulty of balancing the beauty of having trees in a city with the need to keep powerlines clear of and free from falling branches during the windstorms and heavy snows that we get up here in the mountains,” Radspinner said. “So if nothing else, urban forestry is a big part of taking care of those issues surrounding keeping people supplied with electricity.” Attendees also received some insights into the value of involving one’s self with community tree boards, he said. “One take-away from the meeting was that it’s important to get more SAF members involved with tree boards so that they can interact with folks living in urban areas and get them to understand some urban forestry issues. That interaction carries over into the larger forestry activity, too. We find that members of the public will ask questions about harvesting and management, and I think they learn a lot from that interaction.” This article was based on an article written by West Virginia Division member David W. McGill, forestry extension specialist at West Virginia University. For more information, contact him at dm firstname.lastname@example.org.
James Altemus, State College, PA Henry Austin, Evergreen, CO Tracy Beck, Blackduck, MN Cynthia Bennett, Gainesville, FL Travis Bennett, Gainesville, FL Jonathan Boggs, Burns, TN Richard Broadwell, Boone, NC Rhys Brydon-Williams, Louisville, KY William Buffum, Kingston, RI Benjamin Caldwell, Berkeley, CA Kellen Callahan, Gainesville, FL Colin Campbell, Arcata, CA Jacob Chaples, Fort Collins, CO Briana Crockett, Nacogdoches, TX Kutcher Cunningham, Little Rock, AR Phillip Davis, Starkville, MS
Luis de Leon, Berkeley, CA Michael DeMarco, Syracuse, NY Christopher Dempsey, Nacogdoches, TX James Derr, Bend, OR Christine Droske, Moscow, ID Enhao Du, North Augusta, SC Brad Dyche, Chesapeake, VA James Dysart, Concord, NC Elizabeth Ebert, Berkeley, CA Daniel Finch, Nacogdoches, TX Joshua Flad, Hawley, PA Lisa Freeman, Mount Union, PA Richard Gabriel, Beaverton, OR Michele Goodfellow, DeLand, FL Bruce Greco, Flagstaff, AZ Jason Grogan, CF, Nacogdoches, TX Hunter Handley, Corrigan, TX Jeffrey Heil, De Pere, WI Valentijn Hoff, Missoula, MT
Matthew Holt, Knoxville, TN Richard Homann, Fort Collins, CO Rushdan Ibrahim, Kepong, Malaysia Tori Irving, Manistique, MI Benjamin Kamps, Houghton, MI Monte Kawahara, New Haven, CT Darrin Kelly, Sitka, AK Steve Keniston, Newberg, OR Kelly Ketterman, Gettysburg, PA Jesse Kreye, Gainesville, FL Jerry Krueger, Florence, MT Angela Lands, Tuscaloosa, AL AJ Lang, Blacksburg, VA Derek Larsen, Spearfish, SD Julie Larsen, Asheville, NC Yohan Lee, Corvallis, OR Jonathan Loevner, New Haven, CT Garrett Mack, Charlotte, NC
Robert Manatt, Ames, IA Caleb Mende, Asheville, NC Jay Messer, Chattanooga, TN Alyssa Michnick, Blacksburg, VA Kyle Monroe, Carbondale, IL Jeffrey Nichols, Coos Bay, OR Ty Nietupski, Albuquerque, NM Douglas Nolde, Loveland, CO Paul Odomirok Jr., Corvallis, OR David Ohlrich, Starkville, MS Gwydolyn Ozard, Petrolia, CA Ocllo Parks, Theodore, AL Branden Reddin, Raleigh, NC Courtney Richards, Pensacola, FL
Ethan Robertson, Newnan, GA Talmadge Robinson, Anchorage, AK Jack Shallock, Bellaire, TX Ricky Shurtz, Arcata, CA Ashley Smith, Thurmont, MD Sean-Paul Tartar, Ruston, LA Darren Throop, Houghton, MI Jacob Vail, Sedro-Woolley, WA Paul Voisin, Amherst, MA Carly Ward, Fort Collins, CO George Weiss, Kelseyville, CA Spencer Weston, Logan, UT Kathleen Williams, Arcata, CA
The Forestry Source
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Forestry Source - November 2011
The Forestry Source - November 2011
Michigan SAF Tour Brings First-Term Representative into the Field
West Virginia Division's Summer Meeting Focuses on Urban Forestry
Scientists Work to Develop Adelgid-Resistant Hemlocks
Science and Tech
Juniper System's Mesa Notepad Opens Touchscreen Territory
The Forestry Source - November 2011