- Help community prioritize ash tree removal and treatment plans in short term (1-5 yrs).
- Assist homeowners with replanting program based on climate changes over long term (5-15 yr).
- Removal of existing invasive species on property.
- Management of land to monitor for forest health.
- Maintain and enhance species and structural diversity
Climate Change Impacts
For this project, the most important anticipated climate change impacts include:
Increases in temperature may lead to an increase of 1-2 hardiness zones and 2-4 heat zones in the Chicago area.
Species distribution modeling for native species suggests that suitable habitat may decrease for 15 primarily northern species and increase or become newly suitable for 47 species in the Chicago area.
Many invasive species, insect pests, and pathogens will increase or become more damaging in the Chicago area by the end of the century.
Impervious cover can exacerbate the effects of increased heavy precipitation events in urban areas.
Challenges and Opportunities
Climate change will present challenges and opportunities for accomplishing the management objectives of this project, including:
The frequency of storm events and aging tree canopy provide many instances of immediate tree work requirements which uses up available funding for long term work.
Identifying climate-adapted tree species is relatively easy to do, however finding the tree species can be a very big hurdle in completing a replanting program. This is an area-wide and industry-wide problem.
Potential larger suite of tree species available for replanting due to warmer winter temps and longer growing season.
Project participants used the Adaptation Workbook to develop several adaptation actions for this project, including:
2.2. Prevent the introduction and establishment of invasive plants and remove existing invasive species
Remove invasive buckthorn and honeysuckle in the buffer zones around the HOA. Suggest replanting with native shrubs.
Review tree inventory to highlight where the potential introduction of new species might aid in the transition of the removal of dying ash trees. Suggest tree species to be included in tree planting.
Project participants identified several monitoring items that could help inform future management, including:
No more than 10% of one species in the inventory.
Reduction in invasive species cover
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