Rethinking Urban Forestry in Lexington

The urban forest of Lexington includes a remarkably large number of very large, very old trees, may of them predating the existence of the cities. These trees are now in trouble. Many of them are unhealthy because of neglect, poor management decisions, and old age. We need to change the way we view and manage these old trees or they will soon be gone.  Please join us for a discussion about the actions we can take to ensure a long life for these trees:

Lexington’s Urban Forest: Remnants of an Ancient Landscape, Wednesday September 7, 6-8 pm, Fayette County Extension Office, 1140 Red Mile Place, Lexington. Open to the public, no registration. Map.

The benefits of large trees in urban landscapes greatly exceed the benefits of smaller trees. Very large trees provide wildlife habitat and other ecosystem services that cannot be replaced when they die.

Yet in most cities, including Lexington, almost all the expenditures of money, time and effort in urban forestry are misdirected. We spend huge amounts of money planting street trees that repay the favor by quickly dying. Conversely, we spend almost no money on large old trees except to take them down.

We need to change the way we think about and manage large old trees before they are all gone.  On September 7, 2016, we are going to begin a series of events designed to change the way we practice urban forestry and avoid the loss of all our ancient venerable trees.

This discussion will be followed by a Field Course on Saturday October 1 to explore the presence and management of ancient trees in our landscape.  Registration is required for the Field Course. More information is on our Field Courses page.

The goal of these events is to ask and answer one question: how do we ensure a future for our ancient trees?  To make these events successful, we need you. We are inviting community leaders to these events, but it is very important to have a good showing of our loyal friends and supporters. Please make a date to attend the events, especially the lecture on Wednesday September 7.

Bur oak, Quercus macrocarpa, at St. Joseph Medical Center parking garage. Castlewood-9253-Edit Blue ash in Ecton Park, Lexington