City Trees

July/August 2015

City Trees is a premier publication focused on urban + community forestry. In each issue, you’ll learn how to best manage the trees in your community and more!

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Page 3 of 39

Summer is upon us (if you live in the northern hemisphere)! I hope you all had a successful spring planting season. Hopefully you have your newly installed trees on a good watering schedule to help ensure a high success rate. The number one reason we lose young trees is due to lack of water. In Cambridge, MA where I'm city arborist, we install an irrigation bag with each new tree. It makes it easier for the contractor to water the tree, and the bag helps remind the abutting property owner to fill it up two to three times a week as well. Along with tree planting, many of us have tree pruning programs going on for most of the year. Whether it is your in-house crew or a contractor doing the work, proper tree pruning techniques should always be used. ISA and local arborist associations offer great resources for staying up-to-date with industry standards. If you have a pruning contract up for rebidding, do not hes- itate to ask your fellow SMA members to review. The SMA Listserve is a great way to get new ideas for your contracts or forestry programs. For most of us municipal tree folks, budgets are tight. However, SMA offers two great programs that are not worth missing: the SMA Annual Conference and the Municipal Forestry Institute (MFI). If you can sell it to the right folks, the SMA conference should be written into your annual budgets. The next one is only five months away! I hope many of you are able to join us in Denver on November 16th and 17th. We have a great lineup of speakers and topics, and you will surely leave with some fresh ideas for your forestry programs. Plus, the networking among SMA members cannot be beat. MFI is one of those once-in-a-lifetime programs that will help you and your forestry program grow. Hundreds have already raised the bar for themselves by attending MFI; this February, will you be next? Have a great summer! Summertime and the living is easy, right? I hope you are planning a vacation with your family. I am so very fortunate to be able to travel for work and also for fun. Since my daughter works for an airport, I am able to travel much more than I could have ever dreamed. We have been to Amsterdam, Belize, South Korea, Chile, Iceland … places I would never have been able to go if it weren't for the travel opportunities I get because of Nicole. We have literally flown around the world! If your children are thinking about employment opportunities, you might want to suggest an airport job, parents get great travel benefits! I am a firm believer in the value of travel, it changes one's perspective in so many ways. And it teaches patience, something I need more of for sure! I am just back from an UF2020 meeting, so excited to be invited to join in this discussion with university researchers, fellow association executives, and UF relat- ed professionals from a variety of positions. It was even more rewarding to find one of our student interns as one of the graduate assistants on this project. I had a chance to visit with Benjamin Mays who interned in Surrey, BC a couple of years ago, and hear how valuable his intern - ship was in his career development. It became clear to me that there is a huge opportunity to create an umbrel- la for the variety of people and professions who practice the broad discipline we call urban forestry. Municipal arborists are certainly on the forefront of urban forestry in so many ways. Hearing the call—and responding or ignoring it—is something our leadership will have to grapple with in the coming months. Rest assured that SMA Board members continue to be the forward think - ers who have propelled SMA forward for the past 50 years, and who will continue to position this great orga- nization for the next 50 years! I know many of our members are on the periphery look- ing in. You belong to the listserve, but you rarely com- ment. You have a great program but you haven't applied for accreditation. You have thought about becoming a municipal specialist, but haven't sat for the exam yet. You are thinking about coming to the conference, but haven't decided yet. Can I just urge you to set aside that INERTIA and ENGAGE? I know that you are not giving yourself enough credit, you have the experience and expertise that we so desperately need! Not sure how to make that initial step? Please, call or email me, I know we can use your talents and I promise you, you will have a new perspective. It's not as good as a trip to Iceland, but the rewards are many and everlasting! President's Message David Lefcourt Executive Director's Message Jerri J. LaHaie 4 City Trees

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