With the help of an Urban and Community Forestry Grant through The Morton Arboretum and U.S. Forest Service, the Village earlier this year awarded(2019) Graf Natural Resources Management & GIS a contract to conduct a comprehensive inventory of all municipally managed trees within Bartlett, which included all parkway and right-of-way (ROW) trees.
For every tree in the survey, the following information was collected: tree status, address and relative location, species, DBH (diameter at breast height), crown height and spread, parkway width, condition rating (1-5, 1 is excellent, 5 is very poor), roots, wounds, deadwood and rot evaluations, and maintenance recommendation.
The inventory determined there are a total of 15,282 parkway trees in Bartlett with 2,993 available spaces where trees could be planted. The average condition rating of all trees is 2.97, which is slightly above average.
Due to the massive amount of tree removals and replacements following the emerald ash borer infestation, the age of Bartlett’s tree population is now relatively young. It is estimated that 33.2% are less than 15 years old and 33.3% are about 20 to 25 years old. That means only a third of the total population is considered to be “mature.”
The ultimate goal is to have a fairly equal number of trees in each age classifi cation. Therefore, it is important for the Village to prioritize the planting, health and maintenance of young trees so the population becomes more balanced and mature in the future.
There are a total of 117 different species throughout the Village. While this is a respectable number, there is still work that needs to be done to increase the diversity of the population. Urban Forestry has adopted the “20-10-5” rule as best practice,
which states that a tree population should ideally have no more than 20% of any single family, no more than 10% of any single genus and no more than 5% of any single species.
In Bartlett, maples currently make up 32.8% of the population, followed by honeylocusts at 22.2% and lindens at 11.9%. In the future, the Village will moderate new plantings of these three genera and improve diversity by offering underrepresented species as part of its Parkway Tree Replacement Program.
With all of this valuable information, Bartlett’s Public Works Department is now better equipped to address any concerns and plan for the future by creating a long-term management strategy that will keep the community’s urban forest healthy, beautiful, safe and stable for years to come. Use the link below to see the full report