Mature trees enhance this urban street. Photo by Guy Kramer

With a new year starting, many of us will take a hard look at our habits and behaviors and set new goals.

How about investing energy in New Year’s resolutions that make a difference to trees in your community? Completing these resolutions might bring you and your community benefits too.

Suggested tree resolutions for 2018

  • Take a child to a local park, forest or natural area with a tree identification book to explore the environment.
  • Attend at least one urban forestry event to better understand how your community supports forestry activities.
  • Arrange a friendly chat with a local developer, business owner, homeowner association president or other stakeholders in community forestry.
  • Write articles, blogs or letters that educate or champion the importance of trees in your community.
  • Donate to or volunteer for an organization that supports healthy community trees and forests.
  • Plant a new tree every month or the equivalent (12 trees during 2018).

As a tree fan, it is important to remember that trees need to be healthy to provide the many great benefits we expect of them. Trees growing in urban areas need particular care and management throughout their lifetime. Older and larger trees tend to provide the greatest benefits, but they also tend to have more and greater defects that can impact public safety (see Timely Tree Tips for more on this topic). If we do not care for young trees, they will not live to be old trees, and if we do not care for old trees, then we undercut a lifetime of investment in their success.

DNR’s urban forestry staff are available to assist with efforts in your city. Give us a call for ideas on how you can advance the planning, care and management of the trees in your community.