February Appearances Planned For Forest Health Staff

By Art Kabelowsky, DNR outreach/communications specialist, Fitchburg;
Arthur.Kabelowsky@wisconsin.gov or 608-335-0167

Gearing up for what is expected to be a busy spring and summer, specialists from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Forest Health team have booked multiple public appearances for February.

Photo of Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources forest pathologist Kyoko Scanlon presenting a talk. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources forest pathologist Kyoko Scanlon presents a talk at the 2023 North Central Forest Pest Workshop in Wausau. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR

Details on the scheduled February appearances: Continue reading “February Appearances Planned For Forest Health Staff”

Andrea Diss-Torrance Retires After 30 Years In Forest Health

By DNR staff

Photo of Andrea Diss-Torrance, who has retired as the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Invasive Forest Insects Program coordinator

Andrea Diss-Torrance, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Invasive Forest Insects Program coordinator, retired last month after a 30-year career with the DNR. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR

After an incredibly productive and meaningful 30-year career with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Andrea Diss-Torrance retired on Jan. 24.

“It’s been an honor to watch Andrea tackle forest health issues with her mixture of determination, humor and intelligence,” Forest Health team leader Becky Gray said of the coordinator of the team’s invasive forest insects program. “She will be greatly missed as she starts her next adventures.”

Diss-Torrance plans to spend time in retirement on sculpture, plant breeding and travel.

Continue reading “Andrea Diss-Torrance Retires After 30 Years In Forest Health”

Don’t Let Japanese Barberry ‘Tick’ You Off

By Erika Segerson-Mueller, DNR Invasive Plant Program Specialist, Oshkosh Service Center;
erika.segersonmueller@wisconsin.gov or 715-492-0391

Photo showing Japanese barberry quickly growing into a dense infestations in a forest.

Japanese barberry can quickly grow into dense infestations in forests, outcompeting native plants and providing ideal hiding places for white-footed mice that serve as hosts for blacklegged ticks. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR

Most small talk in Wisconsin revolves around three things: the weather, the Green Bay Packers … and in the summer months, how darn bad the ticks are.

If you spend time working or playing outside, you likely know firsthand that ticks in Wisconsin are serious business. Because most of us prefer to minimize our interactions with the tiny arachnids, here’s another tick prevention tactic to add to your arsenal — along with clothing treated with permethrin, long socks and frequent tick checks: Rid your property of Japanese barberry.

Continue reading “Don’t Let Japanese Barberry ‘Tick’ You Off”

Urban Forestry Inflation Reduction Act Grants Update: Upcoming Webinar and Public Comment Opportunity

Laura Buntrock, DNR Urban Forestry Partnership & Policy Specialist
Laura.Buntrock@wisconsin.gov or 608-294-0253

woman looking at a treeWebinar:

Mark your calendars! The DNR Urban Forestry Team will host a webinar on Friday, Feb. 9 from 9-10:30 a.m. The webinar will begin with an overview of the Inflation Reduction Act Grant opportunity, followed by time for Q&A. Stay tuned to the Urban Forestry Newsfeed for more details, including a registration link. Sign up to receive the Urban Forestry Newsletter.

Public comment opportunity:

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is seeking input on the Urban Forestry Inflation Reduction Act Grants 2024 Application Guide.

This guide details:

  • The purpose, priorities and goals for the Urban Forestry Inflation Reduction Act grant opportunity
  • Eligible and ineligible projects and expenses
  • Required documents
  • Reimbursement and reporting schedules
  • Submission guidelines and deadlines
  • DNR contact information
  • Guidance for working with consultants and conducting work on private property
  • The methodology used to define disadvantaged communities
  • And more

Continue reading “Urban Forestry Inflation Reduction Act Grants Update: Upcoming Webinar and Public Comment Opportunity”

DNR Welcomes New Urban Forestry Coordinator In Milwaukee

By Jeff Roe, DNR Urban Forestry Team Leader, Madison; Jeffrey.Roe@wisconsin.gov or 608-535-7582

Elton RogersI am pleased to announce that Elton Rogers has accepted the Southeast Regional Urban Forestry Coordinator position. Elton is based in Milwaukee and his first day was Jan. 16.

Elton holds a bachelor’s degree in geography from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and has
earned a graduate certificate in urban forestry from Oregon State University. Additionally, he is
in the final stages of completing his graduate research project to obtain a Master of Natural
Resources degree with an emphasis in urban forestry.

For the past five years, Elton has been a lead faculty member and full-time instructor at Milwaukee
Area Technical College, teaching in both the Landscape Horticulture associate degree program
and the Arborist Apprenticeship program. He is also an ISA Board Certified Master Arborist and
has held various roles in municipal urban forestry programs throughout his professional career.
He is eager to continue collaborating with municipalities, nonprofits and other organizations in
southeastern Wisconsin to help establish and maintain a resilient urban forest.

Outside work, he enjoys exploring local nature preserves with his wife and two kids. A couple of
his hobbies include disc golfing and rope splicing.

You can get a hold of Elton at Elton.Rogers@wisconsin.gov or 414-294-8675.

Register Now For The WAA/DNR Annual Conference, Feb. 25-27, 2024

Join the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Wisconsin Arborist Association (WAA) for the 2024 Wisconsin Annual Urban Forestry Conference. The conference will be held from Feb. 25-27 at the KI Convention Center in Green Bay. To register online, visit the Wisconsin Arborist Association conference webpage. An early bird discount is available until February 2, 2024.

The DNR and the WAA have developed three days of enriching educational programming on the latest research, innovations, developments and arboriculture and urban forestry industry issues.

This conference is intended for professional arborists, community foresters, nursery professionals, park and recreation directors and staff, tree care workers, landscape architects, green industry professionals, community administrators, volunteers and students. Continue reading “Register Now For The WAA/DNR Annual Conference, Feb. 25-27, 2024”

UW-Extension Landscape And Grounds Maintenance Short Course

The Landscape and Grounds Maintenance Short Course is for landscape professionals to learn up-to-date, science-based information to help increase the economic and environmental sustainability of the landscapes you care for. This online training will take place from 1 to 3:30 p.m. on Wednesdays in February. To register, visit the short course website.

Topics include:

  • Crown Restoration Pruning of Storm Damaged Trees
  • Insects to Watch for in 2024
  • Planting for Resilience: Trees and Shrubs for the Future
  • Low Developing the Next Landscape Staple Perennials
  • Bee Lawns: Practical Applications for Industry Professionals
  • Disease or Not Disease? That’s the Question
  • Turf vs. Drought: The Epic Throwdown
  • The Benefits of Growth Regulators (PGR’s) for Trees and Shrubs

Pruning, Coppicing And Tree Release Training At Riveredge Nature Center

woman pruning

Join Matt Smith, a professional restoration ecologist with over 22 years of experience, for an entirely outside, hands-on field demonstration in pruning, coppicing and tree release for restoration and landscaping. This training will take place on Feb. 23, 2024, at Riveredge Nature Center, Newburg, WI (35 miles north of Milwaukee).

For more information and to register, visit the Riveredge Nature Center website.


Michigan State University Launches Course On Urban Forests And Climate Change


hand holding earth and tree

The Michigan State University Forest Carbon and Climate Program has launched a new intensive course, Urban Forests and Climate Change. This online professional training will be offered multiple times throughout the year. Course content was co-developed with MSU faculty and the Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science, a collaborative, multi-institutional partnership led by the USDA Forest Service.  Continue reading “Michigan State University Launches Course On Urban Forests And Climate Change”

DNR Offers Free Tree Seedlings To Wisconsin Fourth Graders Ahead Of Arbor Day 2024

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is offering free tree seedlings to every fourth-grade student in Wisconsin as part of the department’s annual Arbor Day tree planting program.

Wisconsin fourth grade principals, teachers and those who homeschool can now place seedling orders and coordinate delivery by completing the 2024 Arbor Day application by March 15, 2024.

Planting seedlings from state nurseries is a great way to celebrate Arbor Day (April 26, 2024) which is dedicated to increasing the number of trees across the country to help improve the environment. By ordering seedlings, you can help.

Through its fourth grade Arbor Day tree planting program, the DNR provides interactive education to Wisconsin students around the importance of trees within our environment. Annually, the DNR provides approximately 50,000 free tree seedlings to fourth-grade students throughout the state. Continue reading “DNR Offers Free Tree Seedlings To Wisconsin Fourth Graders Ahead Of Arbor Day 2024”