November 28, 2009
Each of the past three years, James Ward of Westminster has sent 5,000 miniature Christmas trees to soldiers overseas, but this year he might have to leave thousands empty-handed. Ward said he has had trouble finding $25 donations for the 2-foot-tall trees that come complete with lights, ornaments and, most importantly, American soil. The foundation, Operation Christmas Tree, started after Ward sent a few dozen trees to his stepdaughter's unit in Iraq in 2006. When he found out how much the troops loved the trees, he decided to expand the operation to troops in countries around the world.
January 7, 2010
Question: I have 160 arborvitae trees lining my property that were planted by the previous owners about 2 to 2.5 feet apart. Ten have died. A tree company said they were planted too close together and I should remove every other tree. I'm not sure I want to do that! Answer: You do not mention the species or cultivar of arborvitae that are planted. Mature height and width varies and it is helpful to know for proper spacing. Some grow to 50 feet high and 10-15 feet wide or more, while dwarf varieties such as Green Emerald could be spaced like your trees.
May 15, 2012
To what heights would you go to make your child happy? Earlier this month, I found myself 20 feet in the air as I took my tween on an climbing and zipline course in Sandy Springs. I offered to treat him and a few friends to the outing for his 11th birthday, but I had no intention of participating myself. I expected to be on the ground, taking pictures and toting the water bottles. But once we were there, the boys asked me to join them and ... well, it looked like too much fun to refuse.
May 3, 2010
In response to a national call for homegrown, Earth-friendly fuels to fill Americans' gas tanks, a couple of University of Maryland researchers are planting trees. Fuel derived from the hardy, fast-growing common poplar could eventually replace some of the billions of gallons of petroleum-based fuel now pumped a year, say biologist Gary Coleman and engineer Ganesh Sriram, who have partnered to help turn the woody plant into a widely used biofuel. "Oil is a finite resource," said Coleman, a professor of plant science in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
September 22, 2011
Howard County has stopped replacing dying trees removed along roadways. A county employee told me that this is a "temporary" budgetary issue, with a three-year (and counting) waiting list for trees that need replacing. At the same time, Howard County has opened the Robinson Nature Center (with indoor tree exhibits!) which cost almost $17 million to build. The loss of county trees will increase exponentially as the ash borers move through. Why can't we use county money for real tree replacement, instead of tree exhibits?
August 12, 2011
I have been following the removal of downtown trees to make way for the Grand Prix with much interest. The entire incident saddens me as much as the removal of a huge number of trees in my community. A member of the board of directors in my development thinks trees are a bother because they get old and sick and die; then they have to be removed. How to deal with that mindset is baffling. I could not even get a return phone call from the representative for Randallstown who works in the Baltimore County Executive's office.
February 3, 2012
Symphony Woods Park is one of the Columbia Association's greatest open space system assets, and I, the Registered Landscape Architect at CA, and others are doing our best to ensure that it becomes a great park for the community. In last week's Flier , Joyce Potemkin advocated that residents unite to save 53 trees in Symphony Woods slated for removal. While it is unfortunate that 53 trees could be removed for phase one of the park, the space will retain its wooded character: Hundreds and hundreds of trees will remain.
August 4, 2011
Can this be? In a summer of record-breaking heat, have our leaders, who talk the talk about greening and increasing the livability of our city, somehow authorized the destruction of 136 trees downtown in order to improve sight lines for the upcoming Grand Prix ? ("Trees make way for race," Aug. 2.) It seems like an extremely short-sighted decision meant to please those with pockets and priorities vastly different from those of us who live here, care about the city and had been led to believe that we were moving in a more enlightened direction.
September 23, 2011
Baltimore City is fortunate to have Councilwoman Mary Pat Clarke representing parts of North and Northeast Baltimore. She possesses the vision, sensitivity, insight and follow-through to recognize the need for clarifying the law requiring citizens to be notified when city trees are to be cut down. Also, kudos to David C. Troy for filing legal documents requesting a temporary restraining order against cutting trees in preparation for the grand prix race in Baltimore. His actions prevented more trees from being removed.
March 23, 2012
I look forward to a time when Columbia's Symphony Woods is home to both active and passive recreation: picnics, walks, splashing, laughter, relaxation, and maybe even a little music. I commend CA for going forward with a plan to enhance the livability of our downtown area. Saturday I attended the opening of Blandair Park. This event was particularly significant to me, as an immediate neighbor in Oakland Mills. As I watched my daughter run off to explore the play equipment, I felt grateful to everyone who made this possible.