Effects of Pavement on Tree Soil Organic Matter

One of our specialties at The Kestrel Design Group is designing urban tree systems (especially designing urban tree systems to maximize stormwater benefits). One question we are regularly asked on urban tree projects is whether or not soil organic matter will become too low or depleted when trees are surrounded by pavement and leaves are no… More

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Every Which Way of Integrating Silva Cells and Utilities

“What about utilities?” This is probably the most frequently asked question I hear on projects where the Silva Cell is being used. And I get it! Utilities are an extremely important consideration. As DeepRoot’s technical manager, I am often the person responsible for explaining what the different options are for working around utilities in pre-construction… More

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“A tree is like a wine glass on a dinner plate”

In 1978, James Urban had a chance meeting with a man named Tom Perry that forever changed the course of his career. Tom was a microbiologist with a PhD from Harvard. He was working for the Forest Service and was assigned to the urban forest department because, to hear Jim tell it, Tom didn’t fit… More

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Philadelphia’s Green Streets Design Manual Weak on Trees and Soils

In October, I wrote about some of our concerns with Philadelphia’s highly-lauded green infrastructure plan, now codified in their Green Streets Design Manual. This plan has received more praise and recognition than any other citywide green infrastructure policy that I’m aware of (here are a few examples). I’m thrilled to see a major green infrastructure… More

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Minnesota’s Evapotranspiration Credit System for Trees

Last year, The Kestrel Design Group developed a formula for the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency to estimate evapotranspiration benefits from trees to include in their stormwater crediting system. This formula is one of the first – or possibly the first – in the country to formally quantify this benefit.  I spoke to Nathalie Shanstrom, a landscape architect… More

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Balance is Overrated An Interview with World Forestry Center’s Rick Zenn

The World Forestry Center is a nonprofit educational institution that was founded in Portland, Oregon in 1964. Their mission is to educate and inform people about the world’s forests, trees, and environmental sustainability and to increase public awareness of the benefits of sustainable forestry management – environmental, social and economic. Rick Zenn is the Senior… More

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