Month: July 2023

Preliminary Seedling Availability For Spring 2024 Planting | Wisconsin DNR Reforestation Program

Proper tree planting requires a lot of decision making. One of the most crucial decisions to make is which species and age are the most appropriate and cost-effective to plant. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Reforestation Program is taking some of the unknowns out of that process by giving landowners and property managers an early peek at the seedlings we anticipate having available in Fall 2023 for planting in Spring 2024.

This list is preliminary, as some species may be added, adjusted or removed depending on health, growth and other factors as the growing season progresses.

The listed tree and shrub seedlings will be available to purchase starting on Monday, October 2, 2023. Though we expect high demand, we anticipate having a variety of species and ages available to all customers.

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Applications For Urban Forestry Grants Are Now Open!

Cities, villages, towns, counties, tribes and 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations in or conducting their project in Wisconsin can apply for a regular or startup 2024 Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Urban Forestry Grant.

The grants range from $1,000 to $25,000, and grant recipients must match each grant dollar for dollar. A startup grant of up to $5,000 is available for communities that want to start or restart a community forestry program. Grants are awarded to projects that align with state and national goals for increasing the urban forest canopy and its benefits.

The recent Governor’s 2023-25 Biennial Budget increased funding to urban forestry grants by $350,000 over the biennium. In 2024, the annual allotment will increase by $175,000 to further fund Urban Forestry projects. Also available this grant cycle is an additional $145,000 in federal funding to be used for emerald ash borer treatment and ash tree removals and replacements. In total, $806,680 is currently available in regular and startup grant funding for 2024, with an additional $139,920 in reserve for catastrophic storm grants.

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Students Graduate From The Community Tree Management Institute

Congratulations to the latest class of CTMI graduates!

The Wisconsin Community Tree Management Institute (CTMI) wrapped up its fifth class mid-June. CTMI is an advanced training course designed specifically for people responsible for urban forest management who do not have a degree and/or experience in urban forestry. Conversely, they may have the technical skills, but lack the leadership and management experience.

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DNR Urban Forestry Welcomes New Interns

The DNR Urban Forestry team is excited to welcome two urban forestry interns to the Milwaukee office for eight weeks this summer. This is the second year of a collaborative program between the department, the USDA Forest Service, Southern University and A&M College, a public historically black land-grant university (HBCU) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Get to know our new interns, Deron Isom and Jada Walden, from their bios below.

Deron Isom will be graduating this spring from Southern University and A&M College’s Urban Forestry and Natural Resources Department. He chose urban forestry and natural resources to contribute to the care of the environment. During his time at Southern, he had opportunities to intern with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and partner with the Recreation & Park Commission for East Baton Rouge Parish to produce multiple resource management plans and tree inventory projects. He is currently employed with the USDA at the Honeybee Breeding, Genetics and Physiology Agricultural Research Lab. He is known for his master status as a professional pugilist as well as pursuing a professional boxing career. He is a member of The Society of American Foresters, The Louisiana Forestry Association, Southwest Parks and Recreation Training Institute, and Spartans Boxing Club. He has goals to increase global contributions to sustainable living and spread his knowledge of agriculture.

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Upcoming Environmental Justice Webinars

The Arbor Day Foundation and the Chicago Region Trees Initiative are each hosting an environmental justice webinar next week.

On Tuesday, July 18, from 11 a.m. – noon, the Arbor Day Foundation is presenting Environmental Justice in Tree Cities: Where to Begin? A conversation with Dr. Christine Carmichael of Fair Forests Consulting for the Tree City USA network. In this webinar, attendees will learn the defining characteristics of environmental justice, evidence of environmental injustices in urban and community forestry, and strategies to integrate environmental justice principles into their Tree City USA programs.

If you, your organization, your city or town are new to environmental justice concepts and practices, this webinar will equip you with tangible next steps to advance your efforts, including ways to measure your success and adapt as needed along the way. 

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Basswood Thrips Causing Crumpled Leaves, Thin Crowns

By Linda Williams, DNR Forest Health Specialist, Woodruff; or 920-360-0665 

Photo of basswood leaves damaged by basswood thrips.

Basswood leaves show damage after feeding of introduced basswood thrips. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR.

For the second consecutive year, damage from introduced basswood thrips (Thrips calcaratus) is significant in some northeastern Wisconsin counties. Introduced basswood thrips are tiny, invasive insects that feed inside tree buds in early spring. Leaves are then deformed when they expand and can look like frost or wind has damaged them.

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Maple Petiole Borer Causes Leaves To Drop

By Linda Williams, DNR Forest Health Specialist, Woodruff; or 920-360-0665

Photo of maple leaf found on the ground with broken petiole (leafstalk).

A green maple leaf found on the ground with a broken petiole (leafstalk) due to damage by the maple petiole borer. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR.

Some sugar maple trees in the northern half of Wisconsin experienced leaves dropping to the ground this spring.

These leaves were green and had no apparent areas of damage, but they covered the ground under some trees. A closer look showed these leaves had short petioles (leafstalks) that had been broken off when they fell, which indicates a tiny sawfly larva called maple petiole borer was to blame.

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Watch For Brown Spot Needle Blight

Photo showing white pine with yellowing needles.

White pine with yellowing needles; new growth is not affected. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR.

By Linda Williams, DNR Forest Health Specialist, Woodruff; or 920-360-0665

White pine in north central Wisconsin, as well as scattered areas elsewhere in the state, have many needles that are bright yellow. Brown spot needle blight (Lecanosticta acicula, previously known as Mycosphaerella dearnessii) is the primary suspect, although samples have been sent to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Forest Health laboratory to determine if other fungal species are present.

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Lecanium Scale Creating A Sticky Situation

By Linda Williams, DNR Forest Health Specialist, Woodruff; or 920-360-0665

Photo showing ladybug larva feeding on lecanium scale domes.

A ladybug larva feeds on lecanium scale domes on an oak twig. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR.

Lecanium scale is infesting oak forests across Marinette, Oneida and Vilas counties. These scale insects insert their mouthparts into twigs and suck the tree sap. They release honeydew, which ants can collect, or coat leaves and anything located under infested trees (i.e., yard furniture or vehicles). Sooty mold can grow on that sticky material and turn things black, so homeowners may want to rinse off the honeydew from outdoor items regularly.

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