Isa tree selection

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  • 1.ISA Certification Class Tree Selection

2. The wrong tree on the wrong site can be more of a liability then an asset.Selecting the right tree for a particular site is one of the most important decisions to ensure long-term benefits, beauty and satisfaction. 3.

  • All trees haveCultural Requirements :
  • Light
  • Water
  • Soil conditions
  • Growing space
  • Others


  • Each planting site hasEnvironmental
  • Characteristics:
  • Temperature extremes
  • Soil pH
  • Light levels
  • Others

5. Adaptability: The tree speciesgenetic abilityto adjust to different conditions. Some trees are more adaptable then others.Some species are found all over the country while others only grow in specific locations. 6. Acclimation: Theprocess by which a given tree adapts to its environment. Physiological changes-internal (such as chemical )Morphological changes-external (larger leaves, thicker bark) 7. Site Analysis

  • Site analysis is a record of the pertinent existing site conditions that will effect site selection.This information is compared to the functional goals (what you want to achieve with the planting) allowing for the appropriate selection of trees.

8. Site Considerations Planting site :utilities (overhead and under ground),buildings, sidewalks, paved surfaces, intersections, plans for future development Water availability : type of soil, run off, surface type, too much (down spout, low area) Soil :pH, nutrients, salts, drainage, compaction soil texture, bulk density,CEC, soil volume Light levels :too much, too little, reflection, artificial 9. Site Considerations continued

  • Climate :hardiness zone, microclimate, precipitation,
  • exposure, sunlight (too much or too little)
  • Other plantings:trees and shrubs, beds, turf
  • Maintenance to be provided: Irrigation, post
  • planting care, ongoing maintenance


  • Once the site has been analyzed, the next step
  • is to consider theDesign Criteria(based on
  • the functions the tree is expected to serve)
  • Landscape Functions include engineering
  • and architectural considerations such as
  • controlling pedestrian traffic,hiding unsightly
  • building features, blocking wind, providing
  • shade, etc.

11. Tree species considerations Growth Rate :Fast growing trees are often tolerant of poor soil conditions and neglect BUT, often have weak wood that breaks and decays easily and are short-lived Size at Maturity:height, spread, root zone requirements Growth Habit/Form Insect and Disease Resistance:different from immunity 12. Species considerations cont.

  • pH Requirements
  • Salt Tolerance
  • Light Requirements
  • Known Problems:pests, poor structure weak wood,
  • surface roots, messy fruit/flowers/leaves, thorns
  • Attributes:flowers, fruit, bark, interesting foliage,
  • good fall color

13. Species considerations cont.

  • Maintenance Requirements
  • Hardiness: based on the lowest minimum
  • temperature, but the maximum temperature may also
  • be important to a trees success
  • Tolerance to Drainage Problems
  • Seed Source:where did the genetics of the tree
  • come

14. Hardines s 15. Other questions Where did the genetics come from? Is the seed source of the tree from within your hardiness zone? Nursery conditions where the tree is grown: Was it an upland or lowland nursery?Does it match the planting site. Does the tree have factors that make it a liability?thorns? messy fruit? attract bees? 16. Native vs. Introduced Species

  • Native Species:grow well in their natural zone. There
  • is sometimes a question as to whether or not a species
  • is native
  • Introduced Species:(non-native) some have become
  • naturalized(reproducing and thriving in their new
  • settings for decades). Some have the possibility of
  • becoming invasive or carrying in non-native pests or
  • diseases

17. Selecting trees at the nursery 18. What to look for at the nursery

  • Vigorous growth (shoot extension)
  • Good branch spacing
  • Trunk taper
  • Foliage evenly distributed in the upper 2/3
  • Avoid many upright branches
  • Look for single trunk and spreading branches
  • Look for mechanical damage
  • ANSI ASC Z60, American standards for nursery stock
  • Collected plants?

19. Included Bark 20. Multiple Leader on Evergreen 21. Dieback of leader andCo-dominant Stems 22. Healthy Terminal Buds 23. Stem Cankers 24. Multiple Leaders 25. Evidence of fungus on stem 26. Large wound on stem 27. Look for root Flare 28. No Root Flare 29. B&B Planted too deep 1 30. B&B Planted too deep 2 31. B&B Planted too deep 3 32. B&B Planted too deep 4 33. Checking proper depth 34. Graft Unions 35. Key terms

  • Acclimation
  • Adaptability
  • Design criteria
  • Growth rate
  • Hardiness
  • Introduced species
  • Native species
  • Pest resistance
  • Site analysis
  • Site considerations