State Arbor Day

State Arbor Day

Nov. 3, 2017 — GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas — Texans from across the state gathered today in Grand Prairie, Texas to celebrate the State Arbor Day and all the benefits trees provide to people and communities.

Festivities were held at Grand Central and featured an Arbor Day ceremony, educational activities, tree plantings and free tree adoptions. Participants included guest speaker Dan Lambe of the Arbor Day Foundation based in Nebraska City, Nebraska, 1,000 students from Grand Prairie ISD and the eclectic folk/rock band Trout Fishing in America.

Today’s celebration was themed Tree-Epic and was held at Epic Waters, the premier city health, wellness, recreation waterpark in the United States. Exhibiting an appreciation for the city’s urban forest, the park’s construction crews relocated more than 150 existing trees when developing the site, planted 250 new trees and plan to plant more in the future.

“Grand Prairie has larger-than-life commitment to urban forestry,” said Susan Henson, arborist with the Grand Prairie Parks, Arts and Recreation Department. “And we are honored to host the state Arbor Day celebration in such an epic way.”

Today’s celebration of trees also highlighted the importance of restoring the urban forest when communities are affected by natural disasters. In Texas, the most recent would be Hurricane Harvey.

According to Lambe, it will take everyone working together to restore community tree canopies affected by the hurricane. The Arbor Day Foundation’s Community Tree Recovery program launched a campaign to help Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico restore urban forest canopies damaged and lost due to the recent hurricanes.

“The people of Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico have suffered great personal and physical loss,” said Lambe. “By replanting, we strive to bring healing and hope to the people and the communities in which they live. Over time, these trees will restore the canopy and beauty to these cities.”

Learn how you can help by visiting arborday.org/hurricanes.

Texans unable to attend today’s Arbor Day event can still celebrate trees in their own communities.

Texas A&M Forest Service is making it easy for anyone, anywhere to participate in Arbor Day. We’ve provided tips online to help communities anywhere create a memorable Arbor Day, as well as educational activities for schools, groups and families to get outdoors and learn more about trees.

Please visit http://texasforestservice.tamu.edu/arborday/ for ideas on how to host an Arbor Day ceremony. Here you can also find instructions on how to properly plant a tree and activities about the benefits of trees, tree parts and how to identify a tree by its leaves or structure – plus so much more.

About Arbor Day

J. Sterling Morton established the first Arbor Day in the United States more than 140 years ago. Now, it is observed throughout the nation, and in Texas we have been observing this holiday for 128 years. The official Texas State Arbor Day celebration is held in a different host city each year on the first Friday in November.

Contacts:

Susan Henson, Grand Prairie Parks, Arts and Recreation Department, 817-521-1308, shenson@GPTX.org

Courtney Blevins, Texas A&M Forest Service, 817-879-3974, cblevins@tfs.tamu.edu

Texas A&M Forest Service Communications, 979-458-6606, newsmedia@tfs.tamu.edu

Texas Persimmon Tree

Texas Persimmon Tree

Unique Trees of North Texas:

 

Texas Persimmon

 

(Diospyros texana)

Texas persimmon in winter

Texas persimmon in winter

By David Coke and Gene Gehring

The Texas persimmon (aka Mexican persimmon, black persimmon, or Chapote Negro) is not to be confused with common persimmon (Diospyros virginiana) which has larger fruit, a single stem, and is taller with rougher bark. Texas persimmon looks more like crapemyrtle when older, and is usually multi-stemmed with smooth bark.

 

This tree’s range is primarily in the southern half of Texas and into Mexico, particularly southwest of the Colorado River. Its native range does not extend into the upper Gulf Coast, north Texas, or far west Texas. It likes dry, rocky areas and doesn’t like “wet feet”. Planting in a yard that gets regular watering can make for an unhappy Texas Persimmon; however, this native understory tree is able to withstand some shading from larger canopy trees. Texas persimmon has been successfully planted in North Texas and can live 30 to 50 years when conditions are right.

 

It can grow to 35 ft, but is typically about 10 ft high. It has a rounded crown and a smooth, gray bark. As the tree ages, the bark will start to peel away from the trunk and reveal lighter colors underneath. It is a deciduous tree but can be evergreen in its southern areas. It has 1” to 2” oval to oblong leaves which are leathery, fuzzy underneath, and curled over on the edges. They are dioecious (separate male and female plants) and since the species is not common in the area, both sexes would need to be planted to produce fruit. They flower starting in March or April and have small white flowers. That is followed by a small, black fruit which is about ¾” and is edible when ripe. It has lots of little seeds though making that difficult. The fruit it typically ripe in August. It is also used to make a black hair dye or dying leather. Be careful, it can stain the skin black as well. The fruit is enjoyed by a wide range of birds and mammals. Its tough, dark heart wood was used for tool handles.

 

The national and state champion Texas persimmon tree is located in Ulvalde County. That individual is 26 ft tall, has a 22 in diameter, and shades an area 31 ft across.

North Texas Giving Day 2017

North Texas Giving Day 2017

Cross Timbers Urban Forestry Council is proud to be a part of North Texas Giving Day.

North Texas Giving Day is an online giving event for people in North Texas to come together and raise as much money as possible for local nonprofits in the 16 county region around DFW. In just six years, North Texas Giving Day has pumped more than $156 million into the North Texas community. In 2016, more than 142,000 gifts totaling $37 million benefited 2,518 nonprofits.

From now until September 14, we want to spread news of this amazing event. We encourage everyone to brag about the great programs CTUFC provides our communities. We encourage all our members to donate and share our event information. If able to donate, know that a donation of $25 is able to receive additional funding. Here’s the really exciting part: Every gift made through North Texas Giving Day.org on September 14th helps our chances of winning prizes given throughout the day ranging from $500 to $5,000!

Our logo is a strong young post oak sprouting from an acorn surrounded and nurtured by the Cross Timbers Urban Forestry Council.  It represents the great things that can grow from humble beginnings when given the proper support.  Your contribution goes a long way in supporting that growth.

Our current objectives are: * Continue providing up to date, science based information to tree care professionals at an affordable annual conference * Support volunteer education and outreach through the Citizen Forester program * Fund the Mayfest Tree giveaway and * Develop community tree planting projects through partnership with local organizations * Expand our capabilities by hiring our first employee; a part time Executive Director.
With past donations, CTUFC.org, has got a face lift allowing us to  continue to nurture urban forestry programs and an awareness of our natural resources.  The museum quality eco-history traveling exhibit, “The Cross Timbers a Natural Wonder”, has spread even farther across communities, reaching visitors in schools, libraries and city halls.  The exhibit fosters an appreciation of the natural and cultural history of the Cross Timbers region.
CTUFC will once again be able to cultivate sound urban forestry practices by cohosting one of the least expensive yet highest quality workshops in the State, the North Central Texas Urban Forestry Workshop.  Local municipal foresters will grow stronger by attending workshops paid for by the Council.
College students of urban forestry at Stephen F. Austin State and Texas A&M will receive scholarships to diminish the burden of escalating education costs. All of this will be due to your support.  Your contribution will help us spread the roots of sound urban forestry throughout our 17 county region.  We appreciate your involvement and have hopes that you are able to glean all the benefits of a healthy urban forest for many years to come.  Thanks to your contribution, we can make it happen.

 

Or go to https://northtexasgivingday.org/ and search Cross Timbers Urban Forest Council.
Anacacho Orchid Tree

Anacacho Orchid Tree

Unique Trees of North Texas:  Anacacho Orchid Tree (Bauhinia lunarioides)

The Anacacho Orchid Tree is a unique tree not seen often in the North Texas area. It is a small tree in the Fabaceae family which grows to approximately 15 feet tall. It is reportedly native to only a few canyons in western central Texas and in adjacent northeastern Mexico. It generally grows in a bush form but can be trained into a single-trunk tree. The leaves are bi-lobed almost like a small split Red Bud leaf or a cow hoof shape. The one pictured blooms bright white clusters of flowers in the spring and then forms flattened seed pods much like a Red Bud tree. There is also a Mexican Bauhinia that blooms light pink clusters of flowers.

The Anacacho Orchid Tree can grow in full sun or as an understory specimen. It is very drought tolerant, requires good drainage, and will tolerate different soil types other than the typical limestone soils of where it is native. North of Austin it will freeze during heavy winters but since it grows so rapidly it forms a new tree in less than a growing season.

If you might like to try growing an Anacacho Orchid Tree it is best that it be planted on the south side of your home or where it is shielded from the north and west winter weather.

Crosstimbers Annual Meeting

Crosstimbers Annual Meeting

Loyd Park, Grand Prairie

September 22, 2017

11 AM

 

Make plans to join us for our annual membership meeting.  Everyone is invited to have lunch, review the year that was and vote on a new Executive Committee.   After the business meeting, you can enjoy the hiking trails, rent a kayak or canoe, or make an evening of it by reserving a cabin or campsite.  Loyd Park is located on the western shore of Joe Pool Lake in south Grand Prairie. Admission if free just say you are with Cross Timbers, everyone will meet in Loyd Lodge.  Click on the map for more information about Loyd Park.

Let us know you are coming by registering on Eventbrite

2018 Tree Conference

2018 Tree Conference

Just Announced 

2018 Urban Forestry Conference

February 1, 2018

Arlington Convention Center
1200 Ballpark Way
Arlington, TX. 76011

 The Crosstimbers Urban Forestry Council and Trinity Blacklands Urban Forestry Council are teaming up with North Texas Nursery Growers for the 2018 conference.  This collaboration will allow attendees to continue to have the top notch class that everyone is accustomed to and access to North Texas Nursery Growers trade show.  More information coming soon.

Its A Trees Life

Its A Trees Life

IT’S  A  TREE’S  LIFE!!

by Cheryl Bourne Netto – copyright  © June 2017

Have you ever given thought

To the benefits that are brought

By those majestic living statues that are trees?

We may take them for granted

Not knowing how they were planted,

Decorating outdoor space with such grace.

Summer landscapes would be boring

Without these giants with limbs soaring

Displaying a palette of magnificent hues.

Some stand like honor guards

On either side of great, long yards

Leading to grand estates and stately mansions.

A welcome haven for our feathered friends

Many a bough and branch surely lends

A cosy roosting place at the end of day.

Leafy crowns reach out to the sky

As if to touch clouds passing by

While oxygenating the air for our well-being.

Mahogany, teak, cedar, oak, maple and pine

Are some types of trees that we may find

Are used for crafting beautiful furniture pieces.

For Christmas trees the fir is preferred

And by children even perhaps revered

When sparkling with fairy lights and colored balls.

Graceful palms tower protectively over a tropical scene,

Evergreens persevere through the winter in green

Wispy willows weep until the autumn, it seems.

Paper, firewood, planks and housing material too

Are some other uses trees are put to,

Not least of all providing necessary shelter and shade.

There are so many useful purposes that trees serve

And for that much appreciation they deserve.

They are a natural resource which redounds to our benefit.

Providing food and employment while preventing soil erosion,

Shielding ultra-violet rays and cutting down noise pollution,

Without this vital natural resource what would we do?

************

Big Tree Tour 2017 Thank You

Big Tree Tour 2017 Thank You

Mother nature cooperated and the predicted storms held off long enough to complete our spring Tree Tour. Over 20 people spent the day visiting some of the most notable trees in the region. Some were historic, some were really big and some were just odd! Local arborist Wes Culwell designed the tour stops and had a wealth of information on each tree visited. The day started with a stop at a giant post oak tree where Sam Houston camped while traveling through North Texas and ended with a live oak in Lake Worth that was saved from destruction when the highway was expanded. This tree is currently being cared for by a group of local patrons! Also thanks to the City of Grand Prairie for providing vans and drivers for transporting the tour participants.

Courtney Blevins, CF, CA

Texas A&M Forest Service

Ft. Worth Regional Forester

Forestry Scholarship

Forestry Scholarship

Every year the Cross Timber’s Urban Forester Council helps student fulfill there forestry career dreams by giving scholarships.  We give out 2 scholarships in total for $1000 each.  Each scholarship recipient is required to complete an application that states need, forestry goals, and how they plan on helping the urban forest in Texas.

 

The following is a letter from one of our recipients.

May 3, 2017

Mr. Gareth Harrier
Cross Timbers Urban Forestry Council
11376 Kline Dr.
Dallas, TX 75229

Dear Mr. Gareth Harrier,

I am sincerely honored to have been selected as the recipient of the Cross Timbers Urban Forestry Council Scholarship. Thank you for your generosity, which has allowed me to focus on my course load without worrying about financial matters.

As I complete my education at Stephen F. Austin University, I am very thankful for receiving your thoughtful gift. Because of your scholarship, I will achieve my goal of a college degree in urban forestry.

Thank you again for your thoughtful and generous gift.

Sincerely,

Laura Glenn

Senior – Urban Forestry