1st Quarter, 2015 - In This Issue:
In the spring, many schools visit Willow Bend for field trips, taking advantage of the easy access to hiking trails, riparian habitat, and interesting geology. For younger children, these trips offer the opportunity for outdoor exploration and learning in their local environment. Photo Credit: Russell Tweed

February 28: SRP - Overhead & Underground Electrical Safety Workshop


March 10: Urban Forestry Certificate Program


March 21: ISA Tree Climbing Championship - Tampa, FL 


April 3: Western Bark Beetle Initiative Grant Proposals Due


April 4: ISA Certified Arborist Exam


April 15: Arbor Day Poster Contest Deadline 


April 23: Arizona Arbor Day


April 27: WC-ISA Annual Conference


May 8: National Public Gardens Day 


May 29: ACTC Tree Climbing Class 


May 30: ACTC Tree Climbing Championship  


June 5: 24th Annual Desert Horticulture Conference


August 7: 2015 SHADE Conference 


September 18: ACTC Annual Conference  

By: Patrick Rappold
Throughout Arizona, residential wood burning is done to help offset the costs of home heating during the winter months. The efficiency of a wood stove or fireplace can be enhanced if the firewood is properly seasoned to reduce the moisture content of the fuelwood. Dry fuelwood burns hotter and cleaner than freshly cut fuelwood that has not been seasoned. The species of wood used also plays an important role in the operating efficiency of a wood stove. Wood from tree species such as oak and cedar is denser and produces more heat when burned, in comparison to ponderosa pine. However because ponderosa pine is more prevalent in Arizona, it usually is lower in cost than oak or cedar species. 
Air-Drying fuelwood during the summer months will ensure that your wood stove operates efficiently during the winter months. Photo Credit: Patrick Rappold
In terms of safety it is recommended that chimneys are cleaned on a regular basis, by a professional, to help prevent chimney fires. Most often chimney fires result from the buildup of creosote on the inside of the chimney. Creosote occurs naturally when burning of all wood species. Professional chimney cleaners can clean and inspect chimneys to ensure that the chimney is clear of obstructions and structurally sound. It is also important to remember that even during the winter months improper and careless disposal of fireplace ashes can start grass fires. Fireplace and wood stove ashes should be stored outside in metal containers with a metal covering. Other tips for the safe operation of wood stoves and disposal of ashes can be found by contacting the Arizona State Fire Marshal's office.

It is also important to know that during the winter months many municipalities have no-burn days. The no-burn days are initiated to maintain clean air standards in high population communities. Weather patterns that create stagnant air systems most often play a role in the occurrence of no-burn days. Information on no-burn days in Maricopa County can be found at the County's Clean Air Make More website. No-burn day advisories for Pima County are listed at the Pima County Department of Environmental Quality's website. The Air Quality Division of the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality also provides information on the status of air quality for various regions in Arizona.


Purchasing a modern more efficient wood stove is also a good method to help reduce the amount of air emissions produced and increase household safety. The Arizona Department of Revenue does provide a $500 subtraction from income allowance for individuals that purchase either a qualified wood stove or a qualified wood fireplace. Definition of a qualified wood stove or fireplace is:

"A qualified wood stove or a qualified wood fireplace is a residential wood heater that was manufactured on or after July 1, 1990, or sold at retail on or after July 1, 1992. The residential wood heater must also meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's July 1990 particulate emissions standards."


Information on the Arizona Qualified Wood Stove, Wood Fireplace, or Gas Fired Fireplace replacement program can be found on Arizona Form 140 - 2014 Resident Personal Income Tax.


Numerous businesses in Arizona produce fuelwood for residential consumption. Arizona is also home to Forest Energy Corporation in Show Low, AZ that manufactures residential wood heating pellets. 


Patrick Rappold is the Wood Utilization and Marketing Specialist at Arizona State Forestry - Flagstaff District Office. Contact information for fuelwood and heating pellet businesses can be found by contacting Patrick at 928-774-1425.

(Euryops subcarnosus)
By: John Richardson
Sweet Resinbush. Photo Credit: John Richardson
Sweet Resinbush is an invasive plant that invades grasslands, forms monocultures, and out-competes native vegetation. It was originally introduced to Arizona in the 1930's to serve as livestock forage and assist with erosion control. 

Some species of Sweet Resinbush have since been found to be unpalatable to livestock and wildlife. By eliminating grasses, this invasive plant creates an increase in exposure to bare soil and increased soil erosion.

Avoid driving through areas infested with sweet resinbush and check vehicles for attached plants.

Hand pulling/grubbing has proven to be effective in areas with small populations. Make sure to reach below the root crown. Glyphosate and Surflan (pre-emergent herbicide for seedlings) are chemical control methods that have been successful in treating Sweet Resinbush.

The use of an integrated weed management approach coupled with strategic planning has proven to be effective.

For more information:

John Richardson is a Forest Program Coordinator at the Arizona State Forestry - State Foresters Office in Phoenix, AZ. He can be reached at 602-771-1420.
Artwork by Ruby Crandell. 2014.
We are excited to invite Arizona youth in grades K-12 to participate in our "Care for Trees - Trees Care for You" poster contest! This year's contest is intended to increase the understanding of the proper care of trees and how a properly cared
for tree can take care of you.

Please help us demonstrate the importance of caring for trees through your unique and beautiful artwork! Youth across the
state are invited to enjoy this fun and educational opportunity!
Poster artwork will be on display at the State Capitol Museum Rotunda during Arbor Week (April 20-24). Prizes will be mailed to award winners.

The entry deadline is April 15th and posters will be judged based on grade level (K-2, 3-4, 5-8, 9-12).

Maximum poster size is 12" x 16" and only one (1) poster may be submitted per participant.
Completed posters should be mailed to: UCF Poster Contest, Arizona State Forestry, 1110 West Washington Street, Suite 100, Phoenix, AZ, 85007.

View our POSTER CONTEST FLYER for more information or contact John Richardson @ 602-771-1420.
What do you think of our newsletter? How are we doing? We would love to hear what you think.

Office of the State Forester

1110 West Washington, Suite 100

Phoenix, Arizona 85007-2935

Phone: 602-771-1400



Flagstaff District  

3650 Lake Mary Rd.

Flagstaff, AZ 86001

Phone: 928-774-1425


Phoenix District

2901 W. Pinnacle Peak Rd.

Phoenix, AZ 85027

Phone: 623-445-0274


Tucson District

3237 E. 45th St.

Tucson, AZ 85713

Phone: 520-628-5480

Tree Hugging booth at last year's Arbor Day event. Photo Credit: John Richardson

Dear Arbor Enthusiasts,


The New Year came in with an eruption of bark beetles in some of our low desert urban forests, so the Urban Forestry and Forest Health Teams have been hustling among community presentations, field checks, bulletin preparation, and media interviews to ensure that information reaches the right places. We continue to work with our community partners, and welcome your thoughts, concerns and questions at any time. Additional information about the recent insect eruptions is available on our website.


Ensuring tree health is one component to maintaining an urban forest canopy. Another important facet is maintaining urban forest diversity in the canopy by planting a variety of tree species over many years. And what goes with planting trees? Arbor Day, of course!


The Best Holiday of the Year


Many communities across the state are already deep into planning efforts for the upcoming Arbor Day season. Some communities celebrate this holiday in the early spring, while others host Arbor Day events later in the year. In our opinion, any time of year is a good time to celebrate trees.


Based on the Arizona Revised Statutes (Section 1-304), "the last Friday in April, in each year, shall be known as Arbor Day." It further states that "the governor shall make proclamation of Arbor Day and recommend that it be observed in planting trees, ... in the promotion of forest orchard growth and culture in the adornment of public and private grounds, places and ways and in other undertakings in harmony with the character of the day."


With this in mind, we are also preparing to host the State Arbor Day celebration in downtown Phoenix on Thursday, 23 April 2015. Please mark your calendars to join us, and watch for more information soon!


Arbor Day is a great opportunity to re-engage in the natural environment and with your leafy neighbors. It is also the perfect time of year to enjoy a shady walk, and to hug your favorite tree!


Happy (Incoming) Spring~

By: Russell Tweed
The native demonstration gardens surrounding Willow Bend are part of Coconino County's Sawmill Park - a certified National Wildlife Federation Backyard Wildlife Habitat site. The grounds form the basis of many educational programs, such as the one pictured in which ethnobotanist Mike Masek led a workshop on medicinal uses of native plants. Photo Credit: Russell Tweed

Willow Bend Environmental Education Center is situated within Coconino County's Sawmill Park - a National Wildlife Federation Backyard Wildlife Habitat site, and is next to three Arizona Watchable Wildlife Experience sites. If you walk this area today, you can still see remnants of its past. Large chunks of metal and concrete stick out of the ground - remnants of the sawmill that operated here for nearly 100 years.  The southern part of this site - where Willow Bend and Sawmill Park are located - is where debris and old junk were piled.  Now native gardens surround Willow Bend and the natural areas below provide a soft buffer to newly developed land to the north where retail shops and student housing occupy what was barren wasteland. 


Below the native gardens, a steep slope leads to the Rio de Flag channel.  The slope faces south and is hot and dry; it has areas of disturbed and bare soil, and invasive weed problems. One component of our recent grant from the Arizona Forestry Division's Community Challenge Grant Program through the USDA Forest Service was to develop a small demonstration project on this slope.  The focus of the project was to redirect rainwater into this area where it is challenging for vegetation to become established. We built a small mulched terrace near the southwest corner of our building where we already have some small rainwater collection barrels.  These barrels frequently overflow with heavy precipitation and it is the overflow that we now capture and redirect into the terrace.  Toward the end of the summer we selected native trees and shrubs to plant in the new terrace.  We will create some shade, healthy soil and improve the habitat a little bit at a time.

As a part of this grant-funded project, a volunteer team from the American Conservation Experience builds a terrace and covers it with a wood chip mulch. Photo Credit: Russell Tweed

Other parts of our project focused on outreach and education to our community about tree care and maintenance.  We offered a workshop presented by two local experts: Mick Henry of Mick's Tree Service, and Tom Hanecak, Maintenance & Operations Manager for Coconino County Parks & Recreation. Both are ISA certified arborists and they shared their tips as they led the group through the demonstration site that surrounds Willow Bend - Sawmill County Park. There is a wide variety of urban trees in the Park.  Participants learned about planting the right tree in the right place, ideas for mulching, how and when to prune, common pests and diseases that affect our northern Arizona trees, watering and much more.


Northern Arizona University Forestry Professor, Dr. Tom Kolb, also led an interpretive hike about the ponderosa pine seed regeneration event that occurred in the summer of 2013.  Triggered by a heavy cone drop in the fall of 2012 and an unusually wet summer in 2013, some areas of the forest were covered with 1-2 inch seedlings. The last wide-spread ponderosa pine regeneration event was in 1919.  This event prevent provided an extraordinary opportunity to learn about northern Arizona forest ecology and forest health.  Fortunately, the mortality rate of the seedlings was high mitigating the impact of yet more ponderosas in forests that are already overcrowded with trees.
During the Flagstaff Festival of Science, Willow Bend hosted an interpretive hike led by Dr. Tom Kolb, NAU Forestry Professor. The topic was the recent ponderosa pine seedling regeneration event. The event was triggered by a heavy cone drop in the fall of 2012 and an unusually wet summer in 2013. The last time a similar widespread event occurred was in 1919. Photo Credit: Russell Tweed
Willow Bend was established as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in 1978 by the Coconino Natural Resource Conservation District. Each year we reach over 17,000 people in our northern Arizona community, over half of which are K-12 students. We work at over 25 public schools from three school districts as well as regional charter schools, and Tribal Schools on the Navajo and Hopi Nations. 

This project is currently funded through Arizona State Forestry's Community Challenge Grant Program and is made possible with assistance from the USDA Forest Service Urban and Community Forestry Program.

Russell Tweed is the Director of Willow Bend Environmental Education Center in Flagstaff, Arizona. You can call Willow Bend at 928-779-1745, write to 703 E. Sawmill Road, Flagstaff, AZ 86001, or visit their website at willowbendcenter.org
By: Chris Erickson
Not only do we enjoy sharing our lemons, oranges and grapefruits with our friends, family and coworkers, but the citrus industry is a significant part of Arizona's economy, contributing over $35 million, annually. There is a potential threat to this culture and industry in the form of the Asian Citrus Psyllid (Diaphorina citri).

Psyllids are very small insects resembling cicadas, and feed on the sap of a plant with their piercing, sucking mouthparts. The Asian Citrus Psyllid, a non-native species from tropical and subtropical Asia, is 0.125 inches in length, but can pack a punch to citrus varieties and other ornamentals in the Rutaceae plant family (e.g. mock orange, Indian curry leaf, orange jasmine). The psyllids attack new leaf growth, and chemicals in their saliva cause leaf tips to twist or become discolored. Nymphs of the psyllid are small, yellow, and produce a waxy, white excretion that is easily identifiable (see the photo below). At this point, in Arizona, only the insect has been detected, causing these symptoms of attack. Quarantines of citrus materials have been instituted for Mohave County, and portions of La Paz, Yuma, Pima and Santa Cruz Counties (see blue dashed lines on the map below).
An Asian Citrus Psyllid with nymphs. Notice the white, waxy excretions from the nymphs. Photo Credit: City of Ojai, CA. www.ci.ojai.ca.us

The more ominous side of this insect's presence is that it can also carry a potentially deadly tree disease called Huanglongbing (HLB), or citrus greening. Though not yet detected in Arizona, this bacterial disease can cause shoots to yellow, leaf mottling, and abnormally shaped fruit. The fruit may also be inedible, or extremely bitter, but HLB is not harmful to animals or humans. Trees may succumb to the disease in as little as 3-5 years.


Insecticides can be used as a means of control, but insecticides used individually will likely fall short of control goals. A suite of insecticides (foliar for knock-down and systemic for sustained effects) or an integrated, diverse management program would yield greater control success. Monitoring programs are essential to detect the insect, and evaluate the effectiveness of any control measures that have been instituted. See the websites below for more detailed information on quarantines and management options if you detect the insect in your area. Additionally, notify Department of Agriculture and/or University of Arizona Extension Specialists for confirmation of insect presence.

Map of quarantine zones in Arizona (dashed blue line) from the AZ Dept. of Agriculture.
Chris Erickson is a Forest Program Specialist at the Arizona State Forestry - State Foresters Office in Phoenix, AZ. He can be reached at 602-771-1407.
Know of any upcoming events? Have any suggestions for future
topics/newsletter articles? Know someone who would like to receive this newsletter?
Please email the Editor at


Urban & Community Forestry Staff

Alix Rogstad - Program Manager - 
602-771-1427 - AlixRogstad@azsf.gov

John C. Richardson -Forest Program Coordinator-602-771-1420 -JohnRichardson@azsf.gov  

Chris Erickson - Forest Program Specialist - 602-771-1407 -ChrisErickson@azsf.gov

Wolfgang Grunberg - UFRI Project Coordinator - 602-399-1886 - WolfgangGrunberg@azsf.gov



The State of Arizona Urban and Community Forestry Program is made possible with assistance from the USDA Forest Service Urban and Community Forestry Program.


In accordance with Federal law and U.S. Department of Agriculture policy, this  

institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national 

origin, sex, age, or disability. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)


Arizona State Forestry Mission - Manage and reduce wildfire risk to Arizona's people, communities, and wildland areas and provide forest resource stewardship through strategic implementation of forest health policies and cooperative forestry assistance programs.