What's Happening in Your Urban Forest?

Most Dangerous Jobs in the US

I am still unable to wrap my head around the intense damage caused by the trifecta of hurricanes hitting the southern coast of US. I have recoiled at devastating images of islands and cities almost obliterated by tropical storms. As I hug my roommate, I mourn for the people that have lost their lives, or have lost everything but.

As 130+ mile winds hit cement lined structures, trees struggle to remain grounded by their roots in the underlying soil. After camping with a group in…

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Fighting Fire with Fire

If you have ever visited a national park, you have benefitted from the important work of the United States Forest Service. This vital agency has been protecting and preserving our nations beloved landscapes for over 100 years. Forest fragmentation, anthropogenic disturbances, and industrialization have altered US’s forests and rangelands, although it may seem like the area of land they protect has begun to dwindle- that…

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Check this Off

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As a busy student and web administrator, I find the easiest way to keep track of all my important tasks is to…

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Stressed with Shrubs

This morning I was lucky enough to be able to join my grandfather, a healthy and energetic 84, on his morning routine. He walks approx, 2 miles around his neighborhood to breathe fresh air and admire another beautiful day on this earth. During our stroll, he told me stories of his younger days, learning he had spent a few years employed by the lumber industry. Intrigued by the…

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Fruit Tree Grafting

The year is 2017 and the battle has begun in the produce section, organic and GMO. From a young age, I was told 'an apple a day keeps the doctor away', I think about this a lot when doing a weekly refill of apples. I pride myself on the fact that I truly do eat an apple a day, however over the years I can't help but notice the sheer size of these fruits. I held a granny smith apple in my hand that was larger than a nearby navel orange. 

So I began to think about how technology has…

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Who ya Gonna Call? (UFST)

Natural disasters are inevitable. Whenever catastrophic meteorological event wreak havoc across a community, call on an Urban Forest Strike Team (UFST) to assess your local canopy.

UFST has one mission, two words- disaster relief.

This organization is comprised of certified arborist and foresters who provide hands-on assistance to municipalities impacted by natural disasters during the late stages of response accelerating recovery. After the destruction of Hurricane Katrine in 2007, the USDA Forest Service grant provided the foundation for an exceptional group to assemble. This fearless group has been deployed 12 times in the southeast coast, each time providing unique actions to satisfy specific needs of the community.

This national collaboration program has been effectively cleaning up the wreckage of natural disasters for 10 years, continuing to evolve into a task force that can more effectively access risks, provide post-disaster assistance, and pre-disaster planning. After the initial incident report has been made, UTFS may be deployed upon requested. Spatial analysis tools such as GIS and Itree provide real-time data that assesses what trees were impacted, where they are located, the extent of the damage, and whether the damaged trees pose a risk. A full strike team is composed of two team leaders, 10 task specialists (five crews) and one GIS Specialist.

This organization is receptive to the somber state of the community, therefore working as efficiently and optimistically as possible. The leaders of UFST are respectful and empowering to the situation when called to action. The leaders share knowledge to reduce risks and maximize safety.This group suggests every community make an Urban Forest Emergency Management Plan to secure the safety of your trees.

To learn more about this brave task force click here or here.

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