42nd Annual UMass Community Tree Conference

8:00 a.m. 3:30 p.m.

This is an online event

Join us for this virtual conference with a full day of topics designed for tree care professionals, volunteers, and enthusiasts including arborists, tree wardens, urban foresters, foresters, landscape architects, landscape contractors, and shade tree committee members. 

This year’s conference starts off with a Safety Roundtable for Climbing Arborists: Are Some Climbing Techniques “Safer” Than Others?. This will be followed by a presentation investigating how biochar can rescue declining trees—in this case, the tree was the historic Emily Dickinson Oak in Amherst. 

New technology is always pushing forward with urban forestry, and we have two relevant presentations: one on the ALB Trapping Program, and one that explores new tools that the US Forest Service is using to improve urban forest management. 

We always offer pesticide credits, and this year is no different; the outstanding UMass Extension team will present updates on insect pests and diseases to be on the lookout for in 2021. Perhaps the most novel presentation will be by a team of researchers at UMass who are investigating the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to assess likelihood of tree failure from digital images. The preliminary results are illuminating, and this could be a game changer for risk assessments conducted by tree wardens and utility arborists.

Pesticide & Professional Credits

1 pesticide contact hour has been requested for categories 29, 35, 36,  48 and Applicators License (MUST be present for the Pathogens and Pests to Trees & Shrubs talk from 2:00-3:00 pm and answer all poll questions presented during that talk).

Association credits:  1 MCH, 2 MCA (safety), 2 MCA (education), and 2 MCLP available. CFE,  ISA, SAF,  and  CTSP have been requested


8:00     Welcoming Remarks 
Brian Kane, Ph.D. Mass. Arborists Association Professor, UMass Dept. of Environmental Conservation 

8:10     Climber Safety Roundtable: Are Some Techniques “Safer” Than Others?    
             Rich Herfurth, Bartlett Tree Experts and Melissa LeVangie Ingersoll, Shelter Tree

9:15     Biochar – The 2500 Year Old Soil Amendment Helping Trees of Today    
             Greg Beck, Bartlett Tree Experts

10:15   Break

10:30   Bringing the Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB) Trapping Program Into the Digital Age
             Felicia Hubacz, MA DCR
11:30   Lunch

12:15   New Technologies in Urban Forest Management 
             Dave Bloniarz, US Forest Service & UMass Amherst

1:20     Can Computers Identify Risk Trees? 
             Nasko Apostolov & Ryan Suttle, UMass Amherst

1:50     Break

2:00     Review of 2020 and What to Expect in 2021: The 1-2 Punch of Pathogens and Pests to Trees & Shrubs    
             Nick Brazee, UMass Extension Plant Pathologist, and Tawny Simisky, UMass Extension Entomologist

3:00     Wrap-up, Awards to Scholarship Recipients, Instructions for Pesticide and Association Credits
             Kristina Bezanson, UMass Amherst


$95/pp; $75 for each additional person from the same company
Registration Deadline: 
Monday, March 1, 2021 - 12:00pm