National Arbor Day is celebrated on the last Friday in April, and that's today. On this Arbor Day, Gossips shares a message from the Hudson Conservative Advisory Council on the subject of trees.
Trees are amazing.
The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) tells us that one hundred mature, healthy trees remove 53 tons of carbon dioxide and 430 pounds of other air pollutants per year, while creating oxygen! And that those same one hundred mature trees catch about 139,000 gallons of rainwater per year. Plus, strategically placed trees can save up to 56 percent on annual air conditioning costs.
You can add to the arboreal work-force by planting a tree. To plant a tree in your yard, talk with a local nursery regarding appropriate native NY trees to select from. We of the Hudson Conservation Advisory Council (CAC) recommend taking a photo of the area you want to plant, note any power lines, know the kind of sunlight and from what direction the area gets, and know your goals, such as reducing air conditioning costs in the summer, blocking wind in the winter, year-round privacy, winter view revealing, beauty, color, and/or size. For an extra charge, some nurseries will offer planting the tree and with that a one- or two-year guarantee of health and vigor. Now is a fine time to plant a tree if you will be able to water it regularly throughout the summer. Whether you or a nursery will be planting the tree, before digging always remember to call Dig Safely NY. They will check your digging location with Hudson Department of Public Works and all utilities. Once they are sure that it is safe, they will grant approval. Allow about four days to one week to get the go-ahead. This service is free. The phone number is 811; the website is digsafelyNY.com.
If you wish to plant a Street Tree, please go to the CAC webpage on the City of Hudson website and download the Street Tree Application form and the Street Tree Guide. The list of street trees for Hudson is on a grid, noting name, growth rate, salt tolerance, drought tolerance, and if mature height is good for growing under power lines. The Street Tree Application will be reviewed by the Department of Public Works (DPW) and the CAC. The DPW will know if there are power or gas lines in the sidewalk hear the hoped-for planting site and the CAC will know what size hole needs to be cut in the sidewalk for the selected species of tree to have the best chance of survival. In the Autumn, the DPW will cut the sidewalk for the planting of the tree. Autumn is the best time of year for planting street trees. It is the rainy season, the the trees get well settled in before winter, then flourish in the Spring.
If you can't plant a tree, befriend one. Select a favorite tree in a park or on a street and keep an eye on it through the seasons. Please remove weeds that may grow in the tree pit and tidy up litter that may accumulate around it. If you become aware that it needs pruning, or has suffered storm damage, that it might be stressed due to disease or mistreatment, please contact a member of the CAC. If you see a tree that you feel presents eminent harm to pedestrians or property, please call the DPW.
Our hard-working tree canopy, street trees and park trees, is about to get much deserved attention by professional foresters. The Hudson Conservation Advisory Council (CAC) is very pleased that the City of Hudson was awarded a NYS DEC Urban Forestry grant. This Summer, a team if ISA (International Society of Arboriculture) certified foresters will inventory all of the street trees and most of the park trees and write a five-year Community Forestry Management Plan. The city will receive all of the inventory data with GIS mapping location, species, size, and health evaluation electronically so that data on each tree can be kept up to date. This information will be very important for understanding our current urban forest, for planning maintenance, and for creating a planting plan for more trees.
A healthy tree canopy is good for the health and well-being of all. Trees help clean the air, keep buildings cool, keep tempers down, have traffic calming effects, drink up storm water, increase property values, create beauty and promote a connection to nature and to each other. All residents deserve to breathe clean air and live in a healthful environment. The environment and all residents can benefit by reduced energy for cooling.
A single tree belongs to our whole community and the whole community forest belongs to each individual. Trees take their civic duty seriously. Let's return the honor.
Happy Arbor Day 2021!