For the second consecutive year, the University of Findlay has received the designation of Tree Campus USA from the Arbor Day Foundation.
The University’s initial designation was precipitated by a robust urban forest management program overseen by Ben Dolan, Ph.D., associate professor of biology. UF has continued its stewardship by planting eight trees last spring, and replaces ash trees as they die. Additionally, treatments will continue on four ash trees, which will concurrently serve educational purposes.
“Our biggest success was the addition of 80 new trees for landscaping around the new Center for Student Life and College of Business,” said Dolan. “Money for the trees primarily came from donations through a fundraising effort by University Advancement. Stratton Greenhouses selected trees that diversified species in our urban forest, which helps reduce the impact of species-specific diseases and pests,” he said.
A total of 92 trees were planted on campus in 2017, which was likely an unprecedented number for UF. Dolan said about four trees are planted during any given year. Along with those mentioned above, the plantings included an Arbor Day tree planted during a spring ceremony, a cherry tree donated by Friends of Findlay, and a memorial tree in the sensory garden.
Also last year, the UF Campus Tree Advisory Board hosted a service learning project in October in which Wilderness Club students helped remove excess mulch from trees on the front lawn.
“Mulch needs to be removed on an annual basis, before fresh mulch is applied,” said Dolan. “This was our effort to help the grounds crew get it done more quickly. We called the event Mulch Rehab. It also serves as an opportunity for students to learn about tree biology and the danger of burying tree stems.
The University will again be hosting an Arbor Day event this spring; details are still being finalized.