By Todd Lanigan, forest health specialist, Eau Claire. firstname.lastname@example.org; 715-210-0150
Snow fleas are a species of springtails that are active during winter and are generally found in groups where their dark-colored bodies stand out against the white snow. While often observed in late winter or early spring, they also come to the surface on warm winter days, making an early December appearance in west central Wisconsin something to note but not altogether unusual given the relatively warm weather in the area.
Easily mistaken for specks of dirt or debris, snow fleas are tiny soil-dwelling animals that gather on the surface of snow on warm winter and spring days.
Continue reading “Snow fleas spring to surface in early December”
Bottom line – Don’t worry (too much)
By Brian Wahl, DNR urban forestry coordinator, Fitchburg, Brian.Wahl@wisconsin.gov, 608-225-7943
Isn’t it time to LEAF? –Are our trees getting lazy and watching too much Netflix to be bothered with personal grooming? While this may be true for some tweens – something different is up with the trees. Normally, as part of the autumnal process, leaves begin to shut down the photosynthesis factories, shunt some final nutrients around, change colors and eventually fall to the earth (or my gutters). For a leaf to fall easily from a tree, it actively forms/grows/activates an abscission layer – essentially forming a weak layer between the leaf and the tree – a final clue to the leaf that it is time to “fly”.
Continue reading “What’s up with trees that haven’t lost their leaves yet?”
Most people are familiar with the impacts of invasive plants to natural areas, but did you know that invasive plants can be hazardous to human health? Did you also know there is a new app available to learn about tick activity near you and help researchers by recording your own tick encounters? Continue reading “Invasive plants, ticks and you”
By Bill McNee, forest health specialist, Bill.McNee@wisconsin.gov, 920-360-0942 and Andrea Diss-Torrance, invasive forest insects program coordinator, Andrea.DissTorrance@wisconsin.gov, 608-264-9247
Hunters should avoid placing tree stands in or near ash trees, especially in the southern half of Wisconsin, the Mississippi River region and in Door County. Many ash trees in these areas are dead or dying from attack by emerald ash borer (EAB), becoming weaker and more likely to break even with little to no added weight. Continue reading “Dead and dying ash are hunting hazard”
Every wonder if you can successfully plant trees in the fall? Which species are suited to a fall planting and which aren’t? Check out this article from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. Even though it originates from out of state, much of the information is applicable to the Midwest, including Wisconsin.
Wisconsin may be best known for our cheese, lakes and beer, but did you know that we are second in the country for number of Tree City USA communities?! Last year 195 Wisconsin communities achieved Tree City USA status, and those communities are home to nearly 60% of Wisconsinites. Wouldn’t it be something if we were number one in the country this year?! Well, here’s our chance – the application period for Arbor Day Foundation’s (ADF) recognition programs, including Tree City USA and Tree Campus USA, is now open! Continue reading “Arbor Day Foundation now accepting Tree City USA applications!”
By Dan Buckler, Urban Forestry Assessment Outreach Specialist, 608-445-4578
It wasn’t by chance that Norway maple made its way across the pond to our shores. It was, in fact, humble correspondence that invited it here. Continue reading “Norway maple: a boon and bane to Wisconsin communities”
Have you noticed a fast-growing vine with fragrant flowers on your trees and shrubs this summer? The plant began to flower a few weeks ago, drawing attention and concern from residents around the state.
Wild cucumber blooms in mid- to late summer with yellowish-white fragrant flowers. Credit: Susan Mahr.
Continue reading “Native vine thrives with wet Wisconsin summer”
By Linda Williams, forest health specialist, Woodruff, Linda.Williams@wisconsin.gov, 920-360-0665
Barklice tend to congregate in large groups on trees, which can lead some people to worry about tree health, but they are actually quite harmless.
Immature barklice congregated on bark. Striped abdomens are easy to see before the insects mature into adults and develop wings.
Continue reading “Barklice are nothing to worry about”
If we use the K.I.S.S. principle, then here is your formula: if your tree needs water, then water it. If your tree doesn’t need water, then don’t. Continue reading “Tree watering: a simple act, a science and an art, but bottom line – all trees need water (even in autumn)”