Why Trees Don't Wear Sweaters January 25, 2011
No matter what area of the country you were in the past month, you experienced some extreme cold weather - even in areas that usually have fairly moderate temperatures. From Atlanta to Texas, it was cold!
At least we have the option of bundling up with scarves, mittens, hats and coats, and we can even warm up with a nice toasty cup of hot chocolate once back indoors. Alas, our tree friends aren't so lucky.
They can't bundle up or come in from the cold. They have to stand strong and endure the long winter. Maybe that's one of the reasons the mighty oak is so, well, mighty. He tolerates attacks from desiccating winds, snow and ice. Sure, all may be calm below ground, where tree roots can be kept insulated under snow and soil; but the picture changes as you climb. Imagine standing still and anxiously watching the ice dangle off your arms and fingers until it melted - Brrr!Read More
One Tree A Day ... January 6, 2011
In the office last week I noticed a fellow arborist having a bad day. He was working on some research and was staring at the computer screen all morning, and he had a pretty bad headache. Attempting to ignore it wasn't helping. At lunchtime, he decided to go outside and take a walk through the nearby park.
Before he left, it seemed like he was carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders. But when he came back, he was a different man. He walked with a lighter step. His headache had faded. He smiled more easily. And he took the rest of the day's challenges in stride, not letting anything frustrate him too quickly.
It was a complete transformation.Read More
Winter Wonderland December 21, 2010
One of my favorite things to do in the winter is sit by my back windows and watch the bright blue birds eat the brilliant fruit off of my crabapple tree.
It's one of those trees that, despite losing its leaves and becoming a seemingly uninteresting skeleton, transforms into a gathering place for the birds, tweeting and twittering as they munch on the abundant red spheres on the branches. And the arrival of cold weather often adorns the tree in striking frost. The crabapple is truly a tree with incredible winter appeal that brings enjoyment to my whole family.
And what is a landscape if not a canvas for providing yourself with endless enjoyment in every season, regardless of what Mother Nature may bring in the form of harsh winds, sleet, snow and ice.Read More
Prevent Ice Damage on Trees December 13, 2010
There's nothing worse than walking out the front door, confidently bundled up in a warm coat, hat, scarf and gloves only to take that first certain step and have the ice lurking beneath the snow make you do a slipping, sliding dance where your legs brace in a slight squat position and your arms flail out trying to help keep yourself balanced and upright.
Absolutely no one looks cool doing the ice dance.
When ice coats trees in thick crystal layers, forming perfect icicles that clink together, making pretty music in the wind, it can be a beautiful site (and sound). That is until evergreens start to double over and deciduous tree branches hang heavy as if weeping.Read More