Taking action

Make The Most Of Arbor Day On April 26!

The first Arbor Day celebration was held in Nebraska in 1872. More than 150 years later, Arbor Day is celebrated in all 50 states and in many countries around the world. This year, Arbor Day will be observed in Wisconsin on Friday, April 26. Below are ways you can celebrate, educate and care for trees in your community.


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A Taste Of Tree City USA In Wisconsin

Started in 1976, Tree City USA is one of the Arbor Day Foundation’s oldest programs. The founders had a vision for a greener, healthier America and hoped this initiative would inspire change on a nationwide level. The first Tree City USA cohort was comprised of 42 communities in 16 states. Today, the program includes more than 3,600 communities from all 50 states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico.

Publicly demonstrating commitment to the environment is a great way to build pride among residents, as well as position your community as an attractive place to live. The Tree City USA program provides communities with a four-step framework to maintain and grow their tree cover. It also gives them an avenue to celebrate their work, showing residents, visitors and the entire country that they’re committed to the mission of environmental change.

Here are just a few examples of the 193 Tree Cities in Wisconsin.

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Urban Forestry Today’s Summer Tree Summit

Tree Canopy, Environmental Justice & Urban Forestry: Understanding The Relationship
With Dr. Dexter Locke, USDA Forest Service

The University of Massachusetts Amherst is bringing back its Urban Forestry Today’s Summer Tree Summit, kicking it off with a discussion of how to define environmental justice in the context of urban tree canopy cover and urban forest management. Join Dexter Locke from the USDA Forest Service as he explains these important terms and concepts and their practical ramifications for urban foresters and residents.

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USDA Seeks Donated Ash Trees To Battle Emerald Ash Borer

By Caleb Burden, Acting Field Lead Technician, USDA APHIS PPQ;
Caleb.Burden@usda.gov or 734-732-0025

Photo of a green ash tree with a small piece of bark cut back shows emerald ash borer larvae feeding on the tree.

A green ash tree with a small piece of bark cut back shows emerald ash borer larvae feeding on the tree. / Photo Credit: USDA APHIS PPS

In the fight against emerald ash borer (EAB), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) again asks Wisconsin landowners to donate live, EAB-infested ash trees for use in a biological control program.

The emerald ash borer is an invasive insect from Asia first detected in the United States in 2002. Following its discovery, EAB has caused the death and decline of tens of millions of ash trees.

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2024 Spongy Moth Spray Plans Announced

By Art Kabelowsky, DNR Outreach and Communications, Fitchburg;
Arthur.Kabelowsky@wisconsin.gov or 608-335-0167

Photo of an airplane spraying insecticide on trees at Devil's Lake State Park in Sauk County.

An airplane sprays insecticide on trees at Devil’s Lake State Park in Sauk County. / Photo Credit: Wisconsin DNR

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has finalized aerial spraying plans for its 2024 Spongy Moth Suppression Program, with maps for the six selected treatment areas available online.

The treatment sites contain high-value trees at six state parks or forests in Columbia, Marinette, Sauk and Walworth counties. A total of 928 acres will be treated with an aerial spray of “Foray” bacterial insecticide containing Bacillus thuringiensis var. kurstaki.

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Wisconsin Tree Leaders Recognized For Exceptional Community Service

The Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council recently announced its annual awards honoring those dedicated to protecting, preserving and increasing the number of trees that line city streets, fill community parks and beautify neighborhoods throughout the state.

The Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council advises the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) on managing urban and community forest resources.

Governor Tony Evers was on hand to recognize award recipients. / Photo Credit: Joanne Edmundson

“These awards recognize individuals, associations and partnerships that play an imperative role in the celebration of urban forestry excellence within the state of Wisconsin,” said Lee Fredericks, Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council Award Committee Chair. “The passion, commitment and efforts of this year’s award winners have vastly contributed to making our urban forests a highlight in communities for decades to come.” Continue reading “Wisconsin Tree Leaders Recognized For Exceptional Community Service”

DNR Urban Forestry Program Announces Second Round Of 2024 Grant Recipients

By Nicolle Spafford, DNR Urban Forestry Grants Manager Nicolle.Spafford@wisconsin.gov or 715-896-7099

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced the second round of Urban Forestry Grant Program recipients for the 2024 grant year. The program helps fund projects consistent with state and national goals for increasing the urban forest canopy.

The Urban Forestry Grant Program awarded $143,362 to seven Wisconsin communities for urban forestry projects.

Most of the funding ($139,920) was originally reserved for the Catastrophic Storm Grant Program but was not needed through the winter months. The rest of the funding ($3,442) came from carryover funding.

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The i-Tree Open Academy Returns In March 2024

Whether your work with trees involves planting, managing, funding, educating or beyond, i-Tree can help you better understand the benefits that trees provide, the impacts of where those benefits are and how to apply that science to your project goals.

The i-Tree Open Academy virtual learning series is back for spring 2024, with everything you need to explore the latest from the i-Tree suite of tools. Learn more and sign up on the i-Tree website. Continue reading “The i-Tree Open Academy Returns In March 2024”

Funding Available For Nature-based Climate Solutions

The Daybreak Fund was launched in 2023 to advance nature-based solutions to climate change in the Western Lake Michigan region. Geographically, the Daybreak Fund targets watersheds within the Lake Michigan Basin in Wisconsin and in Lake County in far northern Illinois. After making an initial round of grants last fall, the Daybreak Fund is now accepting pre-applications for 2024. Continue reading “Funding Available For Nature-based Climate Solutions”

Watch For Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

By Linda Williams, Forest Health Specialist, Woodruff;
Linda.Williams@wisconsin.gov, 920-360-0665

Landowners with hemlock and anyone who walks through or works in hemlock stands can help watch for signs of hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA).

This invasive insect has not yet been identified in Wisconsin, but it has been found in seven counties in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. The insect sucks the sap of hemlock trees, and large populations can cause the decline and mortality of hemlock over 4 to 10 years, depending on the health of the tree and population levels of HWA. It’s vital to find infestations as early as possible to allow multiple options for control and management.

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