In 2018, among our most-read blog posts were tributes to the Council’s beloved Pat Tobin and Brian Skinner, who passed on from this world, and to former NYSDEC Urban Forestry Program Coordinator Mary Kramarchyk, who left for a new career opportunity. Excluding those special tributes, the following were the most-read blog posts in 2018.
Encore! Originally published on the blog in 2015, this post continues to be highly relevant to our blog readers. It was the most-read blog post in 2018 (more than 1600 views) AND in 2017 (more than 1400 views). Former NYC Director of Street Tree Planting Matt Stephens and NYSUFC Editor Michelle Sutton coauthored this story questioning commonly held beliefs about “fall hazards,” mostly as it applies to B&B trees, but they also discuss the interaction of the fall season with other production methods, like bare root. Nina Bassuk helped craft the section called “The Five Branches of Transplanting Success,” which will be of interest to anyone planting trees.
Callery pear (Pyrus calleryana and its cultivars) is now a problem in parts of the country where we thought ourselves immune. Why are self-sterile cultivars of Callery pear producing fruit? One way it happens is when fertile pear understock sprouts, flowers, and produces viable pollen. Another: by the late 1990s, the introduction of new Callery pear cultivars beyond ‘Bradford’, cultivars like ‘Aristocrat’ and ‘Chanticleer’, led to an unexpected dilemma: in areas where large numbers of Callery pears were planted, the self-sterile cultivars starting pollinating one another. Then came the fruit, then came bird dispersion of the fruit … and “Pyrus, We Have a Problem.”