We reach out to the community by organizing events and supporting a variety of initiatives. These include Roundtables, workshops, supporting local Tree Stewards, awarding Academic Student Scholarships, Virginia Remarkable Trees/Big Tree Program and more.
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Trees Virginia organizes one-day, quarterly “roundtables” for professional arborists, planners, engineers, landscape architects, tree stewards and all interested citizens throughout Virginia at various times during the year. These Urban Forestry Roundtables bring together our community to exchange ideas, present news, discuss issues, listen to presentations and further educate our community about trees and the important roll they fulfill in our society.
Trees Virginia sponsors and organizes yearly in-depth workshops in Waynesboro and Roanoke. The Waynesboro workshop is usually the 3rd week in September and is in partnership with Waynesboro Parks and Recreation, the Virginia Department of Forestry and MAC-ISA. The Roanoke workshop usually takes place in March in partnership with VA Department of Forestry and MAC-ISA. These workshops have grown in popularity during the last couple of years (with attendance at the Waynesboro workshop reaching more then 200) and Roanoke’s attendance over 100). Trees Virginia also holds other workshops with various partners such as Virginia Tech. Additionally a conference in Northern Virginia is organized every two years.
Tree Stewards are trained community volunteers committed to promoting healthy urban and rural forests in Virginia. Tree Stewards provide training classes, educational programs, and projects in their communities intended to increase public awareness of the value of trees while teaching about trees and tree care.
Virginia Tech Emeritus Professor and Extension Specialist Jeffrey Kirwan and outdoor author/lecturer Nancy Ross Hugo were the driving force behind the four-year effort to find and document Virginia's largest, oldest, most historic, beautiful and beloved trees. Dr. Kirwan said, "We asked citizens to search their communities and natural areas for trees that are remarkable because of age, size, beauty, uniqueness, connection to the community, or historical and cultural significance. We were searching for trees that have unusual forms or interesting stories associated with them." The effort culminated with a keepsake book highlighting Virginia's top 100 trees. The 176-page book, published in 2008, and now in its fourth printing, includes full-color photographs taken by internationally-known photographer Robert Llewellyn from Charlottesville VA.
Dr. Kirwan has also been maintaining the Virginia Big Tree Program, but has recently stepped down from this task. Trees Virginia (Virginia Urban Forest Council) and the Virginia Forestry Association provide financial support for the big tree register, and Trees Virginia also supports the big tree intern. The Virginia Big Tree Program began as a 4-H and FFA project in 1970. Today citizens of all ages participate by nominating and re-measuring trees. The program is presently coordinated by Dr. Eric Wiseman in the Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation at Virginia Tech. For questions, please contact us.
The National Arbor Day Foundation (NADF) has recognized 56 Virginia communities with the Tree City USA Award. The towns, cities and military installations that have achieved Tree City USA certification satisfy guidelines from the Arbor Day Foundation. Each community has met or exceeded the following standards set by NADF: establish a tree board or commission; write and pass a tree ordinance; document a $2 per capita expenditure on tree related matters; and have an Arbor day celebration each year.