COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Come October, Mary Maloney hopes to see hundreds of tree-huggers crowding Ohio State University's campus. "And I'm hoping for a lot of non-tree-huggers too," she said.
Maloney is director of the university's Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens and a member of the OSU Tree Campus USA team, which is coordinating "ArboBlitz" Oct. 5-8 on Ohio State's campus.
"We want to engage people who appreciate trees for all that they offer, and those who might otherwise take trees for granted." In fact, she said she is primarily interested in encouraging the latter group to get involved in the event.
"Our campus trees are so valuable, in so many different ways. We want to spark interest both on campus and communitywide to increase appreciation for all that trees do," Maloney said. "Besides physical aesthetics, they provide storm water mitigation, help conserve building energy use, boost air quality and help us reduce our carbon footprint. We're Buckeyes -- we're named after the Buckeye tree. So those of us here at Ohio State have a special interest to help everyone understand just how important trees are."
ArboBlitz events are listed on the ArboBlitz website, http://go.osu.edu/arboblitz2011. They include:
- A Tree Inventory and Mapping program, Friday and Saturday, Oct. 7-8, 1-4 p.m. "The Tree Inventory and Mapping program is vital to our efforts to be recognized as a Tree Campus USA site," Maloney said. The goal is to begin an inventory of all trees on campus; this effort during Arboblitz will focus on the area of campus that includes the Oval. Skills required range from being able to accurately measure the diameter of a tree and recording the information on a form, to knowing the botanical and common names of trees and accurately operating a hand-held mapping device. All volunteers will be trained and accompanied by experts, Maloney said. Students, faculty, staff and community members all are welcome to participate, but must register in advance at http://arboblitz2011.weebly.com/tree-inventory-sign-up.html.
- A "Pest and Disease of Trees Diagnostic Clinic," Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2-5 p.m. in the Traditions Room at the Ohio Union. "This clinic will help homeowners and professionals alike diagnose problems their trees might be experiencing," Maloney said. "Led by some of Ohio's top diagnosticians from Ohio State University Extension's Nursery, Landscape and Turf Team, this program normally charges a $50 fee, but thanks to an Arboblitz grant it is being offered for free." Space is limited and reservations are required at http://arboblitz2011.weebly.com/tree-health-clinic-sign-up.html.
- A keynote presentation on Wednesday, Oct. 5, at 5:30 p.m. in the Traditions Room at the Ohio Union. "Dr. Treevorkian: 10 Ways to Kill Your Tree!" will be led by Jim Chatfield, OSU Extension educator and "Why Trees Matter" program leader.
Additional events include tree tours, a "Seeing the Forest" reading at the university's Thompson Library, tree climbing, tree care demonstrations and a tree planting on the campus Oval. All are open to the public. Events are listed on the ArboBlitz website at http://go.osu.edu/arboblitz2011.