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Trees are Key

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Trees are Key with Paul Johnson will help listeners better care for their trees. This short weekly podcast will feature a short lesson, a weekly tree highlight, and upcoming tree related events around the state. Sample topics will include Why Trees are Key; How To Hire a Pro: To Help You Care For Your Trees; What do Trees Need To Thrive; Trees As Investments; and How To Water Your Tree. Paul Johnson is the Urban and Community Forestry Coordinator for the Texas A&M Forest Service. Paul is an International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Board Certified Master Arborist and Municipal Specialist. He is a member of the ISA Board of Directors and graduated from Oklahoma State University with a degree in Forestry.He resume includes radio talk show host, newspaper columnist, extension horticulturist, university adjunct instructor and plant health care specialist.




Agility is Key

Agility is Key The only constant in life is change. Previously, we have discussed how the future is key (episode 115), and this week we are going to focus on how agility is key. The knowledge that we will have to be nimble and agile as we move into the future is important. Species Spotlight Listen this week to learn more about bluejack oak, Quercus incana, also known as sandjack oak. This oak is often associated with longleaf pine stands in East Texas.

Duration: 00:10:33

Are Leans Key?

Are Leans Key? Trees can be affected by hurricanes in many ways – defoliation, broken branches, complete failure and suffocation by flooding. One thing we haven’t talked about much are trees whose structural integrity may be compromised, but haven’t fallen down yet. One of the keys we look for are trees that are leaning. Listen this week as we answer the question “Are Leans Key?” Species Spotlight Emory Oak Quercus emoryi Listen to this week's episode of #TAK to learn more about a west Texas...

Duration: 00:10:01

Keys to Networking

Keys to Networking Much of our ability to affect change comes from the people we know and the relationships we can develop. Networking is Key to developing a large group of people that you can collaborate or partner with and call upon for help. Join us this week as we talk about the keys to networking and learn a few tips on how to connect with others for the benefit of our trees and forests. Species Spotlight Cherrybark oak, Quercus pagoda, is native to east Texas and has a unique leaf...

Duration: 00:11:38

Keys to Trees and Hurricanes

"Keys to Trees and Hurricanes" One advantage of a weekly podcast is the ability to cover timely topics and there is currently not a more timely tree topic in Texas than hurricanes. We interrupt our normally scheduled programming to cover a vitally important topic. Often the second wave of destruction for our trees are well-meaning folks with chainsaws. Listen to this episode to learn a few of the keys to dealing with trees and hurricane damage. We have a few other episodes that could help....

Duration: 00:09:26

Keys to Fighting Heat Islands

Keys to Fighting Heat Islands It is reported that heat kills more people than all other natural disasters. This week, we discuss how trees are key to combating heat islands in our cities. Tune in as we explore a new report from Texas Tree Foundation and learn what you can do to help. Species Spotlight Listen to this week’s podcast to learn more about a potentially invasive tree. Black Locust, Robinia pseudoacacia, is loved by bees and is tough, but may not be a great choice for your yard.

Duration: 00:11:25

Tree Are Key to Healthy Lives

Trees are Key to Human Health Many people know that trees produce oxygen, cool us with their shade and increase property value, but there is ever increasing evidence that trees are key to human health. From decreased risk of skin cancer, to reduced stress, to fewer cardiovascular incidents, trees really are making a difference. Join us this week as we delve deeper into this fascinating subject. Species Spotlight Western Soapberry, Sapindus saponaria var. drummondii, is a Texas native that is...

Duration: 00:13:06

Keys to Peeling Bark

Keys to Peeling Bark We get lots of requests to determine what is wrong with specific trees. One area that can be very concerning is problems with the truck and bark of the tree. Join us this week as we discuss the keys to splitting and peeling bark. Species Spotlight Rocky Mountain Juniper, Juniperus scopulorum, is an important tree in West Texas that goes by several names. Tune in to this week’s #TAK podcast to learn more about this useful tree.

Duration: 00:09:13

Keys to Trees Losing Leaves

Keys to Trees Losing Leaves This time of year it is common for our trees to lose some of or all of their leaves. There can be several reasons for this, some benign and some concerning. Join us this week for Keys to Trees Losing Leaves to learn more. Species Spotlight Devil’s-Walkingstick, Aralia spinose, is a large shrub or small tree with an intriguing name. Listen to this week's #TreesAreKey to learn more about the well-armed tree.

Duration: 00:10:16

Keys to Things Growing On Trees

Keys to Things Growing On Trees We’ve covered a lot of topics lately that are related to trees, arboriculture and forestry, but let’s focus in on a tree topic this week. Mistletoe, fungal fruiting bodies and lichen are just a few of the many things that can grow on or out of your tree. Listen to #TreesAreKey this week as we talk about the keys to things growing on trees. Species Spotlight Goldenraintree, Koelreuteria paniculata, is a beautiful non-native tree. Their yellow summer flowers...

Duration: 00:08:18

Conferences Are Key

From students and education let us move into one of the best ways to continue your education, conferences. The ISA conference is just around the corner, but it is not the only option. Join us this week as we explore the world of conferences in arboriculture and forestry. Species Spotlight Black willow, Salix nigra, is a widespread Texas native. Listen this week to learn more about how to identify this species and ways it can be utilized which include as an indigenous pain reliever.

Duration: 00:10:10

Students Are Key

Students are Key Last week we talked about the future and this week we’re talking about the future professionals that will care for our trees and forests. Join us this week as we talk about how “Students Are Key” and how we can invest in the future now. Species Spotlight Carolina Buckthorn, Frangula caroliniana Listen this week to learn more about this small tree that provides food for birds and interesting fall color for us.

Duration: 00:10:57

The Future Is Key

The Future Is Key We’ve talked a lot about the concept of time in previous podcast. Arboriculture is the art of applying the science of trees over time and learning is all about taking the lessons from the past and applying them to the now, but what about the future? Our actions now will have an impact of the future and the future will have an impact on us. Join us this week as we talk about why and how “the future is key” and how to prepare for it. Species Spotlight Black hickory, Carya...

Duration: 00:11:09

Slenderness Ratio is Key

Slenderness Ratio is Key Pruning is very much an art and science. We seem to get a little bit more research each year, yet we have a hard time affecting change to reduce the incidence of topping and the insidious lion’s tailing. “Cleaning” out the interior leaves and branches was somewhat standard 20 years ago, but we now have research that shows this is a bad practice. There are a couple of reasons you shouldn’t lion’s tail your trees. Listen to “Slenderness Ratio is Key” to find out....

Duration: 00:10:04

Research Is Key

Research Is Key I like to define arboriculture as the art of applying the science of tree care over time. Ask two arborist how to do something and you are likely to get at least two answers. This is the art of arboriculture. It’s not as easy as fold along the dotted line, place tab B in slot A and wait for a known result. People have been managing trees as long as there have been people, but we rarely know what the result will be. Luckily for us, we know more about the science of tree care...

Duration: 00:23:51

Keys to Ball Moss

Keys to Ball Moss From kudzu to grape vine, there are many plants that can cause problems by growing on and over our trees. We are regularly asked if ball moss, a relative of Spanish moss, is hurting the trees. Join us this week as we discuss the keys to ball moss. Species spotlight White fringetree, Chionanthus virginicus, is a deciduous Texas native. While this is a beautiful flowering tree, it can harbor a tree harming insect, the emerald ash borer. Tune in to learn more about this tree...

Duration: 00:08:28

Trees Are Key to Energy Savings

It’s getting to be that time of year – when we all turn on our air conditioner. I always hate to turn it on because our electric meter starts running faster. A few key trees allow us to delay turning on the unit and helps us keep the use to a minimum. Listen this week to learn how #TAK to energy savings. Species Spotlight With many unique forms and leaf colors, Japanese maple is a beautiful, but temperamental landscape specimen in Texas. Listen to this episode of #TAK to learn more.

Duration: 00:10:39

Is Age Key?

Is Age Key? One of the toughest questions we’re asked is, “how old do you think this tree is?” I don’t think many of the questioners want to cut down their tree to counts its rings, nor do they want to pay for carbon dating. Join us this week as we talk about how to determine a trees’ age and try to determine if age is key. Species Spotlight This week’s tree, Chinkapin Oak(Quercus muehlenbergii), is a great planting choice for alkaline soils. Not only does it have a uniquely shaped leaf,...

Duration: 00:12:49

Keys to Houston's Forest

Keys to Houston’s Forest Trees are key to healthier, happier, safer communities and tree inventories and assessments are key to better management. We’ve talked about the urban forest inventory and assessment program in episode 64 and now we have a new city in My City’s Trees. Listen this week to learn more about Houston’s urban forest. Species Spotlight River Birch Betula nigra This week’s species spotlight is a beautiful tree that provides visual interest year-round. Listen to learn more...

Duration: 00:11:31

Keys to Municipal Forestry

Keys to Municipal Forestry We have spent the last two years talking about arboriculture, forestry and urban forestry, but this week let’s talk a bit more about municipal forestry. How can our communities care for and manage our urban forest? What can and should your community be doing to help keep us safe and healthy? We answer these questions on this episode of #TreesAreKey Species Spotlight Black Walnut, Juglans nigra, can be a tough nut to crack. This slow growing Texas native has...

Duration: 00:09:45

Volunteers Are Key

Volunteers are Key The impact volunteers can have is amazing. Often they are willing to contribute in big ways even when they are not being paid. Listen to this episode as we talk all about how volunteers are key to arboriculture and forestry, how to work with volunteers and how you can get more involved. Species Spotlight Longleaf pine is a beautiful tree that can be key habitat for the red-cockaded woodpecker. Listen to this episode of #TreesAreKey to learn more about this fire tolerant...

Duration: 00:12:32

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