Trees in city parks and open spaces throughout Massachusetts are suffering visible stress and injury due to neglect, insufficient knowledge of horticultural techniques and intensified use of urban spaces, in addition to an invasion of exotic pests such as the Asian Long Horn Beetle, recently discovered in Worcester. According to Ann Marie Pilch, Education Director at Tower Hill Botanic Garden, just about any downtown area in Massachusetts shows distressed, hazardous, inappropriately chosen or wrongly planted trees, shortening the lives of the trees, stunting their beauty and needlessly increasing the costs of tree maintenance. With such existing conditions, the urban forest is an easy target for exotic pests like the Asian Long Horn Beetle.
In collaboration with the Nathaniel Wheeler Trust, Tower Hill Botanic Garden offers an annual Urban Tree Symposium for persons working in the urban forest or the green industry generally. Through educational programs like these, it is our goal to provide the support necessary for thriving urban forests that improve city life and establish the foundation for a sustainable urban forest for years to come.