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Use your ears to ID trees!

Biologist David George Haskell teaches students how to identify trees by the sounds produced by air moving through their leaves or raindrops spattering on them. “Depending on the shapes and sizes of their leaves, the different plants react to falling drops by producing ‘a splatter of metallic sparks’ or ‘a low, clean, woody thump’ or a ‘speed typist’s clatter.’ Every species has its own song. Train your ears (and abandon the distracting echoes of a plastic rain jacket) and you can carry out a botanical census through sound alone.” Full story is available in The Atlantic.

Arlington’s New Community Tree Canopy Program

The Arlington Tree Committee has embarked on a subsidized tree planting program made possible with funds from the 2012 John F. MacEachern Bequest. The target area for this spring’s pilot program is East Arlington (Hardy and Thompson school districts) because of its sparse tree canopy. This program is managed by the Tree Committee and is not related to ongoing street tree plantings managed by Arlington’s DPW.
Available tree: White Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida), 4-5 ft.
Cost: $50 (retail value with delivery of $150)
Delivery Date: April 29, 2017 (tentative)
See the Spring 2017 tab on this website for more information on the program or to order your tree.

Fossilized forest reveals sunspot activity 290 million years ago

Scientists can determine past changes in the sun’s magnetic field by analyzing tree rings. Now German scientists have shown that tree rings in petrified trunks from fossilized forests can be used to reveal dat about the sun’s cycles from eons ago. Data obtained from the petrified forest of Chemnitz, which was  buried by a volcanic erruption 290 million years ago, showed tree ring growth patterns similar to those caused by modern sunspot activity. Below is an artist’s impression of what the Chemnitz forest looked like.


March edition of Citizen Forester

In this edition: Part 2 on the science of tree planting (see especially the info on removing excess soil to expose the root collar before planting), spotlight on the yellow birch tree, info on Arbor Day and state grants, and more.

Arlington Tree Bylaw now in effect

To view the full text of the bylaw (Article 16, Tree Protection and Preservation), visit the Tree Bylaw page of this site or the Town website page “Title V – Regulations Upon the Use of Private Property, ” where you can view the full text of the bylaw.

Urban trees store more carbon

A new study shows that trees in the Boston region grow faster and store more carbon as biomass the closer they are to developed areas, even when the trees are growing in patchy areas of woods. A study just published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science shows that forest fragments in New England may sequester much more carbon dioxide than previously predicted.

January edition of Citizen Forester

In this edition: A comprehensive article on evaluating the health and quality of balled-and-burlapped trees before you plant them,a short report on the 2016 gypsy moth outbreak, a profile of the Dawn Redwood, a report on current state-wide drought conditions, and details on applying for a 2017 DCR Urban and Community Forestry Challenge Grant, and more.