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Latest from The Spokesman-Review

High Drive Park project receives $50,000 funding boost

The City of Spokane Urban Forestry program has received a $50,000 boost to its forest health project at High Drive Park. Hikers, mountain bikers, and home owners who value the High Drive bluff area will benefit from the project’s impact on fire risk reduction.

The City’s partnership with the local volunteer stewardship group, Friends of the Bluff, enabled the Urban Forestry department to access funding from a state jobs bill through the Washington Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

“The money will be used for contract work on thinning and pruning the Bluff’s forest. This will reduce the risk of intense, uncontrollable fires that would threaten adjacent homes and neighborhoods as well as the trees themselves,” said Guy Gifford, a forester with DNR. “The thinning and pruning will also improve the forest health as the remaining trees will have more space, light, and moisture so they will be less susceptible to damage from pine bark beetles. We will start work this September, and will be able to treat up to 50 acres of the park.”

One last tree planting effort at Hangman Creek before winter

CONSERVATION — The InlandNorthwest Land Trust is calling for volunteers ond FRIDAY to “Beat the Frost” with a tree planting effort to help restore a riparian area along Hangman Creek just south of Spokane.

The group hopes to get 10-15 volunteers from noon to 3 p.m. Friday to help plant 200 trees at either the Bryant/Sayre property or the neighboring Hein property while the weather permits.

The trees will help stabilize the stream bank, decrease erosion and future solar radiation, and increase wildlife habitat along Hangman Creek.

What you will need: gloves, water, snacks (if you wish), and a shovel.

Contact: Brooke Nicholson, email outreach@inlandnwlandtrust.org or

call (509) 328-2939 to sign up and receive directions.

Neighbornhood workshop on fire risk reduction for the High Drive Bluff on Thursday

URBAN FORESTS — The Friends of the High Drive Bluff are organizing a discussion on the proposed Fire Risk Reduction Plan for that popular South Hill recreation area on Thursday, 6:30 p.m.-8 p.m., at St. Stephens Episcopal Church, 5720 S. Perry St.

Anyone interested in the Bluff is welcome and encouraged to participate.
Last spring, community members identified fire risk reduction as a high priority for the Bluff and for neighboring homes. Attend this workshop to learn details of the plan, get answers to your questions, and learn how you can help with the project.

Contact: Diana Roberts, WSU Spokane County Extension, (509) 477-2167, email robertsd@wsu.edu

The Lands Council is in 3rd place so far in the Toms Of Maine challenge!

Update: The Lands Council is still in THIRD PLACE in the 50 States for Good challenge presented by Toms of Maine! Please vote every day through Sept. 13th. You won't be cheating by doing so, trust me.

Here is what you're voting for, and yes, I will be reminding you constantly to vote:

The Lands Council
is excited to announce that their project, "Reforest Spokane Day," has been chosen as one of 20 finalists in Tom's of Maine's 50 States for Good challenge.

What exactly does this mean? This means that should the project win - Tom's of Maine will grant the funds to plant: 10,000 native Ponderosa Pines with the help of 500 Volunteers in ONE SINGLE DAY Right HERE is Spokane!!

Spokane NeighborWoods Presents Launch Party at the new Public Market

Spokane Urban Forestry Director, Angel Spell, is inviting you to the Spokane NeighborWoods Launch and they're celebrating with a tree planting, DJ, dancing, wine tasting, taco-eating, cupcake gorging, and other caloric excesses. Bring the whole family; they'll have dirt to dig and prizes for the kids.

The Party starts at 5pm Saturday, May 7th at the new Spokane Public Market, 24 W 2nd Avenue @ Browne.

Spokane Urban Forestry joined the Alliance for Community Trees (ACT) in August and are excited to get Spokane involved in ACT's NeighborWoods program.  NeighborWoods is a national program that provides promotional materials, event promotion, mini grants, and guidance to help communities become better educated and enhance their urban forests. 

Help shape the future of young trees in Spokane

Spokane has a beautiful urban tree canopy system, receiving the Tree City USA designation for the seventh year in a row. The Urban Forestry office manages manages 50,000 street trees and another 28,000 trees on developed park land within the city. That said, this is an exciting opportunity for you budding treehuggers out there about a program with the Urban Forestry office for their V.I.P program:

Tree fans are being sought for a program designed to improve the future of young trees in public places. The “Volunteers In Pruning” (V.I.P.) program trains local tree fans to prune young trees for form and structure. The program targets trees that were planted within the last three years which is the best time in the tree’s development to establish good tree form and correct any structural problems that can lead to future hazards or tree failure.

The V.I.P. project is sponsored by “Community Canopy,” a tree care education program of the cities of Spokane, Coeur d’Alene, Post Falls, Hayden, and the Spokane County Conservation District. These communities are pooling resources to train volunteers and supply them with the tools needed to do the pruning. Each community’s forestry program will choose which public trees will be targeted for pruning and will most likely be a combination of park trees and street trees.