Urban Tree Canopy Assessment & Plan
Existing Tree Canopy
Tree canopy is defined as the layer of tree leaves, branches, and stems that cover the ground when viewed from above. The USDA's Community Tree Guide (2006:15-30) highlights the following benefits of urban and community forests:
- Energy Conservation
- Reduction in Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide
- Improved Air Quality
- Reduction in Stormwater Runoff & Improved Hydrology
- Aesthetic Benefits
- Property Value Benefits
- Noise Reduction
- Wildlife Habitat
The Town of Woodstock's existing tree canopy totals 21.7% of all land area in the Town, per the Urban Tree Canopy (UTC) Assessment (PDF), which was completed in 2009. Of the 29 towns and cities studied, the Town of Woodstock ranked 28th on UTC coverage.
Tree Canopy Goal
The Woodstock Tree Board recommends an 8.3% increase in the Town's urban tree canopy within the next 10 years. On November 1, 2011, the Town Council voted unanimously to adopt the Urban Tree Canopy Plan (PDF). Reference the plan to learn more about the Town's implementation strategy.
Increasing the Tree Canopy is Easy!
- Plant the right tree in the right place - consult with your local nursery retailer to select the appropriate tree for a great spot in your yard. This not only maximizes the great benefits that trees can provide your property, but it helps the tree reach its full potential (thus, increasing the tree canopy). The Town has a list of recommended trees (PDF) for large yards, small yards, and yards that come in conflict with overhead utility lines.
- Become involved in the activities of the Town of Woodstock Tree Board
- Celebrate Arbor Day (announced in April) by chatting with neighbors and friends regarding the benefits of tree plantings - Access the Arbor Day Foundation website for great information.
- Don't Top Your Tree! Tree topping is the drastic removal, or cutting back, of large branches and is intended to correct the problem of a tree outgrowing its space. This action facilitates tree decay and eventual decline. Educate your neighbors and friends about this undesireable practice. More information on tree topping...