The road to hell is paved with bradford pears

Michael Dirr was in Charlottesville February 10 to speak at the 28th Annual Central Virginia Landscape Management Seminar, presented by the Piedmont Landscape Association. In the morning, he gave a talk entitled, “In Praise of Noble Trees." Dirr is the author of the Manual of Woody Landscape Plants (6th Edition), the bible of the nursery/landscape industry. Additionally, he has published hundreds of other works and planted thousands of trees.

The reality for trees in this tree city is tough. A year ago, we planted three oaks in a part of our neighborhood that sorely needs trees. One was mowed over by a lawn service guy who couldn’t be troubled to steer his lawn chariot around it. A second survived a house fire, but had to be moved when a track-hoe needed access to knock down the burnt house remains. The third still lives.

This is the time of year to be making a list of bare root seedlings to plant early in the spring. The Virginia Department of Forestry has how-to-plant guidelines on their website. The Department of Forestry sells seedlings. Musser Forests is my favorite bare root tree source.
Bill Emory puts up a new photo every day at

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