Spring 2018 Western Tree Tour

Spring 2018 Western Tree Tour

A view of the west on the spring tree tour

A view of the wide west on the tree tour

One of the trees on the tour, the Memorial Oak near Benbrook, TX

The Memorial Oak, one of the largest bur oaks in it’s area and a former state champion tree

WHEN: April 28, 2018 – Tour check in by 8:30am.  Bus will leave no later than 8:45am.  We will return by 6-6:30pm that day.

WHERE: 9509 White Settlement Rd., 76108@ WLoop 820. East end of the Home Depot parking lot between the Garden Center and the Whataburger Restaurant.

HOW: Comfortable seating aboard a Coach Tour bus with an on-board restroom.  A PA system, TV screens and on-board visuals will maximize your tour experience.

ACCESS: We will make about seven (7) stops.  Most stops will be right by our trees.  Two (2) stops will require up to 300 ft. of walking, not all on paved surfaces.

ITINERARY: See below.

GENERAL TOUR SUMMARY: Climb aboard for a historic tree tour with a ‘Western Flare’.  We will travel west of Fort Worth where “The West Begins” to see some big trees like the National Champion Pecan which predates the birth of our nation and probably twice as old.  We will travel through ten counties and five county seats.  Most of the tour will follow our beautiful state highways.  Parker County is considered to be the ‘Cutting Horse Capital of the World’ and we’ll pass by some world class horse and cattle ranches.  Palo Pinto County, pictured above, is one of the most scenic counties in North Central Texas.   These two counties were the birthplace of the Goodnight-Loving Trail.  The lives of Oliver Loving and Charles Goodnight and the trail they blazed was the basis for the book and movie “Lonesome Dove” and it all happened here and not down in South Texas.  So, we’ll explore the ‘true story’, the characters and the incredibly wonderful Pecan tree these men sat below and forged their agreement in 1866.  If you’re a ‘Lonesome Dove’ fan, this tour is a must!

We will explore the history of eight Famous Trees of Texas, viewing most of them, and take a vertical look at the former State Champion Bur Oak, also much older than our Nation. It’s a GOOD RIDE!

PRICE: $70 includes tour, lunch, and some drinks and snacks

CEUs: 5 hours ISA, contact Courtney Blevins for more info

Registration: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/spring-2018-western-tree-tour-tickets-44566844632?ref=estw

8:45                            Leave from west Ft. Worth parking area

9:10 – 9:20               Greenwood Cemetery, NE Weatherford

9:25 – 9:50               Weatherford Pecan

10:25 – 10:55          Goodnight-Loving Pecan

12:05 – 1:00            Mary’s Café,  Lunch                

1:00                           Leave for Comanche town square

1:55 – 2:10               Downtown Comanche and Fleming Oak

2:35 – 2:50               Hazel Dell and the Choctaw Bill Robinson Oaks

3:15 – 3:35               Twin Oaks in Hamilton

3:35                           Leave for FT Worth

5:25 – 5:40               Memorial Bur Oak

5:55                           Arrive back at start

NOTE:  Although it’s a long day, we are going to provide additional educational tree information.  Each small town we go through has an interesting person or attribute and we will explore them.  Maybe you know more than we do?

2018 North Texas Conference

2018 North Texas Conference

This year’s North Central Texas Urban Forestry Conference focused on Diversity. The expert presenters gave us new ways to look at structural soil and root zone protection, storm water management, pest analysis and management, and a look at exciting tree species choices. This conference marked the first time the Cross Timbers Urban Forestry Council partnered with the North East Texas Nursery Growers Association, which allowed attendees to access the trade show conveniently.

The first presenter was Dr. Kelby Fite and he gave us a review of soil studies by Bartlett. Among many topics he explained the rapid soil improving effect of fine roots, which are able to add organic matter into depths of the soil. Also, the use of high quality, smaller planting stock in areas with limited soil space may allow a longer timeframe before rooting space becomes an issue. He later discussed the importance of not only selecting high quality trees, but techniques to improve long term root structure. He was followed by Dr. Fouad Jaber’s discussion of storm water management utilizing trees, bioswales, and bioretention areas. Some advances in storm water management include the use of green roofs, even in downtown Dallas where a highway overpass is now a park with trees in spite of the fact that much of the soil is no more than a few inches thick. Trees have potential to control erosion with roots while also uptaking water and reducing the burden on public storm water control. A very interesting point he made concerned the use of bioretention in everyday settings such as home yards. By simply creating depressed areas in the soil, “bonus” water can retained and absorbed into the soil. Features and designs like these serve an important role in slowing water, forcing soil absorption, and stopping pollutants from flowing to rivers and harming crucial water bodies.

If you give trees large quantities of uncompacted soil, things work out pretty well.  -Dr. Kelby Fite

One of the presenters, Dr. David Creech, was unfortunately unable to attend. However, the Director of Peckerwood Gardens was able to take over the presentation on new and diverse tree species that could be planted in Texas. We thank Adam Black for being able to make it on short notice. Dr. Mike Merchant and Dr. Kevin Ong were the final presenters covering current urban forestry pest issues and methodology for identifying those pests, respectively. Crape myrtle bark scale is a relatively new pest to North Texas, but there are successful chemical control methods which were discussed. The future of ash trees in Texas is unfortunately less certain due to devastating impact of EAB; however, there are methods for saving trees and lessening the impact of a pest that will almost certainly continue to spread throughout the U.S. The good news is that Texas has only about 2% ash trees and there are successful treatments for saving individual trees. Dr. Ong discussed the logic behind identifying patterns and issues with pests in trees that may not always be clearly and easily determined.

Click here for Adam Black’s presentation on Diversifying Tree Choices

Click here for Dr. Kevin Ong’s presentation on Landscape Problems

Click here for Dr. Mike Merchant’s presentation on Emerging Pests

Click here for Dr. Fouad Jaber’s presentation on Stormwater Management

Click here for Dr. Kelby Fite’s presentation on Avoiding Root Defects; Click here for Dr. Fite’s presentation on urban tree root protection, such as use of structural soils, titled “There are Many Ways to Walk By Trees”

We also want to thank all of our sponsors not only for supporting the conference, but also for attending the presentations. Our 2018 sponsors were Southwest Wholesale Nursery, Environmental Design & Davey, Arbor Masters, Minick Materials, Site One Landscape Supply, BWI, Arbor Stakes, and ISA Texas. We hope to continue to provide education beneficial to all in our industry.

There were over 200 participants and the conference was completely sold out, so we thank you for making this conference a success and we will strive to make next year’s conference even better. The presentation room was comfortable, and the weather was exceptional if you had a chance to walk along the water out front. We hope that the change in venue was a positive experience overall and we hope to offer more advantages to our attendees in the future. If you would like to participate in the planning of the 2019 conference, please contact Laura Miller.