Big Trees, Small Spaces

Big trees provide more environmental benefits and greater visual impact than small trees. As city spaces for trees become smaller and smaller, however, we are planting smaller and smaller trees.  And yet, if we look around older neighborhoods we find many examples of large trees growing in paved, heavily built places.  In this presentation we will explore the questions:

  1. How do big trees grow in tiny spaces?
  2. How can we provide adequate space to support big trees in our cities?
  3. What are the standards for estimating how much soil is needed to grow a big tree?

Nelda MathenyNelda Matheny is president of HortScience, Inc. in Pleasanton, CA, a horticultural consulting firm. For the last several years many of her consultation projects have involved difficult soils that grow very little on their own, but that must be made to support diverse, impressive landscapes. She and her partner Jim Clark have authored many technical articles and four books together. Their most recent publication is the ISA Municipal Specialist Study Guide.

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