FALL 2018 - In This Issue:
Urban forests are trees for people. They provide important environmental, social and economic benefits and are a crucial element of urban design. Photo by Taylor Edwards.  
Sept 14-15: ACTC Annual Conference & Pest Management Workshop, Prescott Resort & Conference Center, Prescott

Sept 15: ISA Certified Arborist Exam, 7:30a-12:30pm, Prescott Resort & Conference Center, Prescott

Sept 16: Trees of BTA Tree Tour, 8-10am, Boyce Thompson Arboretum, Superior

Sept 21: Tree Unloading Party, 7-10am, Pera Club, Tempe

Sept 22: Shade Distribution Volunteer Event, 7:30am-12:30pm, Pera Club, Tempe

Sept 29 and Oct 6: Tree Care Workshop Parts I and II, 1-3pm, Tucson Botanical Garden, Tucson

Oct 10: Tips and Tools for Seasonal Tree Pruning, 10am-12pm, Tucson Botanical Gardens, Tucson

Oct 12:  Tree Pruning Workshop in Spanish  and English, Yuma

Oct 13: Apache Junction Shade Tree Workshop and Distribution, 8am-12pm, Apache Junction

Oct 14 and Nov 18: Pruning Trees and Shrubs, 2-4pm, Desert Botanical  Garden, Phoenix

Nov 9: Tree Workers Workshop, 6:45am-3pm, Tumbleweed Recreation Center, Chandler

Nov 10: Chandler Shade Tree Workshop and Distribution, 8am-12pm, Chandler Center for the Arts, Chandler

Nov 10: Tucson Clean and Beautiful's Rooted Art and Tree Festival, 3-9pm, Borderlands Brewing Company, Tucson

Nov 30: Festival of Trees, The Arboretum at Flagstaff, Flagstaff

Dec 8: Tree Climbing Competition, location TBD 
2018 AZ Invasive Plants Treatment Prioritization 
2018 Invasive Plant Treatment Prioritization - Phoenix north area (red = high, blue = low priority).
2018 Invasive Plant Treatment Prioritization - Flagstaff area (red = high, blue = low priority)
In 2017, the DFFM's  Forest and Woodland Health  Program (FH) identified the need for a rapid spatial assessment of invasive plant species and their management needs in Arizona to identify areas that would benefit from increased invasive plant management efforts. The 2018 AZ Invasive Plant Treatment Prioritization (IPTP) analysis represents our ongoing, strategic effort to spatially and quantitatively assess existing invasive plants management data and provide a map of treatment priority areas.
Although IPTP is intended primarily to inform FH's planning, we encourage its use by Arizona's communities and others to improve invasive plant management. For example, we think IPTP is relevant to the urban forest. Our analysis includes factors such as Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) and riparian areas both of which fringe and permeate the urban landscape.

What is IPTP's purpose?
  • Rapidly and strategically assess AZ's invasive plants management data
  • Use data to inform DFFM future priorities in FH planning Account for existing invasive plant management efforts from local to federal level
  • Keep spatial and quantitative analysis simple and transparent
  • Generate summaries and geospatial products for internal and public dissemination
Note:  Arizona-wide top priority areas are not necessarily more important for management decision making than local high priority areas within communities, watersheds, road and drainage reaches, and within ecological regions.

How did we do it?
A panel of local to federal invasive plants management experts helped us determine 8 spatial analysis criteria based on available data:
  • Fire Risk: average AZWRAPwildfire risk index
  • Riparian Areas: wetland riparian area, and 100 year flood zone (minus built-up areas) acres
  • Protected Species: diversity count of listed and sensitive species
  • Spread Corridors: miles of roads and perennial streams
  • Invasive Plant Threat Level: highest A/B/C threat level of observed invasives
  • Prior Treatments: treated acres for the last 10 years
  • Wildland Urban Interface: WUI acres
  • Undeveloped Areas: % undeveloped
We normalized and combined the eight criteria on a 1 square mile hexagon base to calculate the IPTP Index where red (or "hot") represents high interest areas and blue (or "cold") represent lower ones.

Products for you!
The 2018 IPTP report detailing methodology and results, an interactive web map, and our GIS data is scheduled for release in October 2018.
For more information, contact Wolfgang Grunberg, DFFM Project Coordinator.
2018 Grantee Showcase:
October 30th in Phoenix 
The Grantee Showcase is an opportunity for DFFM grantees to show off what they have been working on with their current Urban and Community Forestry grant. Current grantees will present an update and lessons learned from their projects. This event is open to the public. 
When: Tuesday, October 30th
Time : 10am to 4pm
Location : Arizona Department of Agriculture Building, ROOM 206 
1688 W. Adams St, Phoenix, 85007

Grantees and interested public please RSVP to Cori Dolan no later than October 1st.
What do you think of our newsletter? How are we doing? We would love to hear what you think.
Office of the State Forester
1110 West Washington, Suite 100
Phoenix , Arizona 85007-2935
Phone: 602-771-1400

Northern District  
3650 Lake Mary Rd.
Flagstaff , AZ 86001
Phone: 928-774-1425
Northeast District  
2922 West White Mtn Blvd.
Lakeside, AZ 85929

Northwest District
1133 West Road 3 North
Chino Valley, AZ 86323

Central District
2901 W. Pinnacle Peak Rd.
Phoenix , AZ 85027
Phone: 623-445-0274
Southeast District
3740 E. 43rd Place
Tucson , AZ 85713
Phone: 520-628-5480
A Minute with the Manager
By John Richardson, Program Manager 
Aerial Detection Surveys show bark beetle damage near Crown King. Photo by Danny Depinte, USFS. 
As we near the end of the 2018 monsoon season (official end date of September 30th), we can look back and appreciate the above average and much needed rainfall. With rain, and an essential green-up of trees in our forests, woodlands, and urban areas, comes storm damage. Thousands of trees in Arizona's urban areas were once again lost to extreme wind and, in part, improper planting and care. I personally noticed that Palo Verde and pine species had a tough summer. But we're not out of the woods yet (no pun intended). Do you remember September 8, 2014? That was the day Phoenix received a record setting 3.29 inches of rain over a 24-hour period and cars turned into boats on the I-10. While that was primarily the remnants of Hurricane Norbert, we can expect a couple more days of activity as we transition out of the monsoon season. I'll take the rain without the wind and I'm sure the trees would agree. More importantly, let's hope for a wet winter!
We have officially concluded the 2018 Aerial Detection Survey. Annually, with the US Forest Service, we fly millions of acres of forest and woodland to identify dead and dying trees. Many urban areas are included in these surveys. A big shout out to Steve, our Forest Health Specialist, for all his hard work with this year's flights. For results, be on the lookout for our Forest Heath Conditions Report which is scheduled to be out in late November.
The 2018 Community Challenge Grants are now available. This year's theme is Water Conservation and Rainwater Harvesting for Benefit of Trees and Communities. Grant proposals are due October 12th. Please contact myself or someone on our UCF|FH Team if you have any questions.
Enjoy the cooler weather! 
- John
By Jon Orona, Urban Forestry Specialist

If you are like me, you enjoy hearing the raspy call of the cactus wren, the buzzing wings of hummingbirds, the distant yelp of the coyote, the lizard on the wall that taunts the dog, and the singing of finches in the trees - all just outside your door. Having a wildlife friendly yard is a great way to enjoy Arizona's rich wildlife diversity. Here are a few suggestions for trees that you can plant in your yard based on your elevation and habitat type.


Low Elevation (Below 4,500 feet)

  • Ironwood (Olneya tesota): A native tree to Arizona, Ironwood provides food in the form of seeds and insects that birds will eat. Additionally, Ironwood provides excellent shade from the intense desert sun.
  • Mesquite (Prosopis spp.): There are several different species of Mesquite, some are native and some are not. In general, it is best to plant native vegetation if you want to attract native wildlife. One of the most common Mesquites found in Arizona is the Velvet Mesquite (Prosopis velutina). The Velvet Mesquite, similar to other Mesquites, produces fleshy bean pods that are eaten by a variety of different wildlife.
  • Desert Willow (Chilopsis linearis): The Desert Willow is a beautiful tree that can be found in the deserts of Arizona. It sports a beautiful flower typically from April until September which provides nectar for hummingbirds and other nectar feeding animals. Small mammals eat the seeds in late summer and fall.
Mid Elevation (Between 4,500 feet & 6,000)
  • Oak (Quercus spp.): There are many different species of oak found throughout Arizona. One of the characteristics of oak is the production of acorns. Acorns are eaten by a wide variety of birds and mammals. Additionally, shrubby species of oak such as Turbinella Oak (Quercus turbinella) provide excellent hiding cover and larger species such as Gambel Oak (Quercus gambelii) provide excellent habitat as well.
  • Netleaf Hackberry (Celtis reticulata): This tree produces berries that birds eat and leaves that are eaten by deer and other herbivores while the dense foliage provides excellent shelter for a wide variety of animals.
  • Pinyon Pine (Pinus edulis): This pine produces small to medium sized cones with large seeds. Native peoples of the southwest have harvested Pinyon Pine seeds for thousands of years and many people in Arizona still harvest Pinyon seeds even today. Pinyon Pine is the preferred food of the Pinyon Jay (Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus) which can be seen in large groups during the winter months.
High Elevation (Above 6,000 feet)
  • Arizona Walnut (Juglans major): A tree species often seen in riparian drainages in Arizona, the Arizona Walnut provides food, nesting habitat, and cover for a wide variety of species. The large seed is a favorite of squirrels.
  • Spruce: The two most common species of Spruce that can be found in Arizona are Engelmann Spruce (Picea engelmannii) and Blue Spruce (Picea pungens). The dense foliage of the spruce provides excellent shelter for birds and the sharp needles offer additional protection. The seeds of the spruce are eaten by birds and small mammals as well.
  • Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa): Our most common pine in the state and nation, every part of the Ponderosa Pine is eaten or used by some animal. The pine seeds are eaten, the bark harbors insects for woodpeckers, creepers, sapsuckers, and nuthatches, and young trees are often eaten and thrashed by large ungulates such as elk and deer. The large mature Ponderosa Pine provide excellent nesting and roosting habitat for raptors. This iconic tree is an essential part to the mountain ecosystems of the western United States.
In addition to trees, supplying water, food in feeders, and a diversity of native shrubs, forbs, and grasses will provide the optimal backyard wildlife habitat. Be aware that planting wildlife friendly vegetation may also attract unwelcome animals into your yard such as snakes, coyotes, skunks, and bear. For more information on living with wildlife, see the AZ Game and Fish Department website. As always, take into consideration the needs of the tree when planting your wildlife oasis, and then just sit back and enjoy.
By Steve McKelvie, Forest Health Specialist
Photo courtesy of Insects and Diseases of Arizona Field Guide
From on-the-ground observations and aerial detection surveys, a significant rise in cedar mortality is occurring across the state of Arizona. This mortality is attributed to both drought stress and infestations by the cedar bark beetle. Hosts of the cedar bark beetle ( Phloeosinus spp.) are Arizona Cypress and junipers. Signs of these beetles are typically twig killing (flagging) or whole tree fading. Under the bark, egg galleries are simple and longitudinal, 1 to 3 inches (2 to 7 cm) long, usually engraving the wood rather deeply, with larval galleries wandering away from the main gallery leaving a thermometer or centipede appearance. These beetles typically have just one generation per year with adults attacking new hosts in spring and early summer. Adults and larva feed on the inner bark of the tree forming galleries. Newly emerged adults feed on the pith of twigs of living trees prior to constructing egg galleries, which can result in the death of the twig. The cedar bark beetle is typically not aggressive and generally found attacking trunk, tops and limbs of weakened, dying or felled trees, but during periods of extreme drought outbreaks can occur. The best prevention is to provide supplemental deep watering during the winter and spring at the drip line of the tree.
By Jon Orona 
Arizona is home to over 70 National Champion trees which are trees that are the largest of their species in the United States. Many of these trees are hundreds and even thousands of years old and have survived the test of time. We encourage you to visit our champions that can be found throughout the state. For directions and locations to these trees please contact our Urban and Community Forestry team and stay tuned for our interactive Magnificent Trees of Arizona map.

National Champion Trees
1. SW Ponderosa Pine
The Ponderosa Pine is an iconic tree of the mountains of Arizona and we are fortunate to be home to the largest contiguous Ponderosa Pine forest in North America! More specifically, this champion Ponderosa Pine - nominated by Tyler Williams of Flagstaff, Arizona - is being considered as a National Champion for the subspecies Pinus ponderosa ssp. brachyptera . The tree is located on the Coconino National Forest and overlooks scenic Oak Creek Canyon. The tree measures in at:
  • Diameter at Breast Height = 62.4 in.
  • Height = 113 ft.
  • Crown Width = 45 ft.
This magnificent pine sports a large burn scar which is common with trees of this species. Ponderosa Pine is adapted to live in a fire-dependent ecosystem. Researchers can determine fire frequency as well by examining the tree rings.

2. Utah Juniper
Located on the North Kaibab near Jacobs Lake, Arizona this National Champion Utah Juniper ( Juniperus osteosperma) is a great side trip while visiting the beautiful north rim of the Grand Canyon. The tree measures in at:
  • Diameter at Breast Height = 54.8 in.
  • Height = 33 ft.
  • Crown Width = 50 ft.
Brian Jansen of Camp Verde found this tree while conducting field work in the area. Concern was expressed over the amount of fuels surrounding this champion and the Kaibab National Forest stepped up and cleared fuel away from the tree. Thank you U.S. Forest Service for your time and efforts! If you are interested in hiking to this tree, please contact our urban and community forestry team.

3. Desert Willow
This national champion Desert Willow ( Chilopsis linearis) was nominated by Mitchell Holder and first made its debut in 1976 making it one of the first trees nominated from Arizona on the American Forests Champion tree list. This tree measures in at:
  • Diameter at Breast Height = 55.4 in.
  • Height = 45 ft.
  • Crown Width = 49 ft.
Desert Willow is typically a small to medium sized tree that can be found in desert drainages throughout Arizona and is a commonly planted desert landscaping tree. As you can see from the picture, the tree is located in a neighborhood in Globe, AZ.  

Take a closer look at that tree in your yard - it may be a champion! 
Request for Applications 
Deadline October 12, 2018

DFFM is pleased to offer two grant opportunities:

1. Community Challenge Grants are intended for promoting and enhancing the quality of Arizona's urban and community forests. Priority will be given to projects that align with this year's theme of Water Conservation and Rainwater Harvesting for Benefit of Trees and Communities.  Local and tribal governments, non-profit organizations, and public educational institutions qualify.

Download Community Challenge grant application  here.

2. T.R.E.E. Grants are offered to  currently recognized Tree City USA communities and Tree Campus USA campuses. They are intended to assist with the management, improvement, or conservation of community trees.  Projects eligible for TREE funding include, but are not limited to, tree planting to reach canopy cover goals, tree inventory, removal or pruning of hazardous trees, tree ordinance review/ development, and training of volunteers and city/county employees to best care for our community forests.

Download T.R.E.E. grant application  here .
Know of any upcoming events? Have any suggestions for future
topics/newsletter articles? Know someone who would like to receive this newsletter?

Please email the Editor at CDolan@dffm.az.gov

Urban & Community Forestry Staff

John C. Richardson - Program Manager- 602-771-1420

Wolfgang Grunberg - UCF|FH Project Coordinator - 602-399-1886

Steve McKelvey - Forest Health Project Coordinator - 602-771-1415

Jon Orona - Urban Forestry Specialist - 602-771-1407

Cori Dolan - Conservation Education Coordinator - 520-262-5519

The State of Arizona Urban and Community Forestry Program is made possible with assistance from the USDA Forest Service Urban and Community Forestry Program.
In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this
institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)

Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management - Mission - Manage and reduce wildfire risk to Arizona's people, communities, and wildland areas and provide forest resource stewardship through strategic implementation of forest health policies and cooperative forestry assistance programs.