Keeping, maintaining our tree canopy « The City of Lakewood, Ohio -
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Keeping, maintaining our tree canopy

The City of Lakewood maintains all of the trees on public property, including those on tree lawns. Trees are removed when they are diseased or dead and pose a danger to the public. A certified urban forester supervises a crew of arborists who have all of the required equipment to trim branches, remove diseased trees including the stumps, plant new trees and shred the resulting wastes for recycling into mulch. Tree lawn trees are replaced according to a master reforestation plan. Mulch is available to Lakewood residents free of charge at the location near the Animal Shelter in the Rocky River valley. Logs are also available to residents for use as fire wood free of charge at the same location.

As the city’s aging trees begin to die — many of them planted around the same time, 100 years ago — many of the warm and inviting canopies have disappeared.

The city’s forestry department and Lakewood Tree Task Force have developed a comprehensive strategy to improve the tree canopy and add diversity to the variety of species around the city.

In just two years, the organization has already helped plant dozens of trees at Madison and Lakewood parks, presented 19 recommendations to Lakewood City Council supporting tree legislation and worked with the city’s forestry department to plant nearly 600 trees around Lakewood.

The city’s strategy also includes an effort to prepare the city for climate change, add diversity to the urban forest, withstand pest infestations and storms, and add in trees with more fall colors. More trees also means less storm water runoff.

The Lakewood tree canopy has been assessed by satellite at 28.5 percent.

“It’s good for a high-density, urban area,” said Chris Perry, the city’s public works unit manager, who oversees the forestry department. “But we can do better.”

The goal is to increase the tree canopy by 10 percent, to 38.5 percent by the year 2035.

Want to contribute? The task force is encouraging residents to support its Gift-A-Tree initiative.

For more on the city’s tree strategy, see the city’s two recent videos: Planting Trees in Lakewood and Lakewood Working With the Tree Task Force to Improve Tree Canopy.