Three Cheers for Trees

May 15, 2018

It may look like the trees you see every day are just standing around, blowing in the wind and soaking up the sun. But don’t judge a tree by its cover … these amazing perennial plants are a hard-working bunch. Two mature trees can supply enough oxygen annually to support a family of four, and trees absorb one ton of carbon dioxide over the course of their lives. Not to mention, their shade and wind buffering reduces annual heating and cooling costs by $2.1 billion. We could go on and on, but here’s our point. It’s time to thank our trees! Luckily there’s a day for that.

National Love a Tree Day, celebrated annually on May 16, recognizes trees and all they do for us. You know, like give us the air we breathe … no big deal!

So this National Love a Tree Day, help us say three cheers for trees. GPO has lots of different ideas for you to spread the love, including reading some of our favorite publications from the GPO bookstore:

  • Cozy up to your favorite shaded tree and read a good book. (Keep reading for suggestions).
  • Calculate the age of a tree.
  • Climb a tree … just play safely!
  • Plant or water a tree.
  • Take a nature walk in your nearby park or woods.
  • Teach the kid in your life what their state tree is.
  • Have your kids write a hand-written “thank you” note to our trees. Get creative. They can color pictures of trees. Even better, save a tree and create a card digitally!
  • Practice tree pose. Namaste.
  • Take a trip to see some of the oldest trees in the world at Redwood National Park.
  • Read Why Would Anyone Cut a Tree Down from GPO’s bookstore with a little one. This book details the life cycle of trees and explains how trees work as a renewable resource.
  • Learn about tree species and which species grow near you in the National Individual Tree Species Atlas from GPO’s bookstore.
  • Help restore trees to good health when they need it with How To Recognize Hazard Defects in Trees from GPO’s bookstore.

So go on. Take three deep breaths, in through your nose and out through your mouth. Ahhhh. And appreciate that precious oxygen a little more this Wednesday, May 16. We salute you, trees.

The GPO Online Bookstore – Easy Access to Federal Publications

HOW DO I OBTAIN RESOURCES MENTIONED ABOVE?

Shop Online Anytime: You can buy eBooks or print publications —with FREE Standard Shipping worldwide— from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore at https://bookstore.gpo.gov.

Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

Order by Phone: Call our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.

Visit a Federal depository library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library. You can find the records for most titles in GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

About the author: Blogger contributor Cat Goergen is the PR Specialist in GPO’s Public Relations office.


Christmas Tree Manual, O Christmas Tree Manual, How Useful Is Your Guidance

December 1, 2015

That’s not the radio you just heard. It’s a fresh holiday beat from a Federal Government employee! Before you plug your ears or throw a cup full of egg nog at this blog post, please close your eyes and take a moment to think about the poor Christmas trees-in-training out there.

As they grow into canvases fit for a festoon of tinsel and popcorn garland, some Christmas trees are beset by damaging agents and mottled by disease. Insects, mites, fungi, and nematodes can lay waste to hearty spruce, pine, and fir. That all sounds so dire. Thankfully, it’s preventable and treatable. And there’s a government resource for that!  Ok, you can open your eyes now.

001-000-04764-7The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest Service’s Christmas Tree Pest Manual shows how to diagnose and control damaging Christmas tree pests. This tidy publication provides easy-to-use guidance to ensure that Christmas trees of the North Central and Northeastern regions of the United States are vigorously fit for their wintry spectacle.

A read thru of the varied afflictions listed in the manual will renew your appreciation for the health threats trees must overcome to arrive at your local home improvement store parking lot. Take the bagworm for example. While they might serve for a fitting ingredient in a wizardly potion, bagworm larvae thin foliage and render a Christmas tree unfit for sale.

In case you’re worried the topic of Christmas tree pest management is not in your wheelhouse, the manual includes some comforting language in the introduction. “You do not have to be a pest specialist to use this information. The manual was written in everyday language so that anyone with an interest in Christmas trees can read and understand it.” Whew! Now you can confidently pick up Christmas Tree Pest Manual and tell those loathsome yellow-bellied sapsuckers good riddance.

001-000-04767-1And if you’d like to take your pest manual reading to the next level, the USDA’s Major Forest Insect and Disease Conditions in the United States: 2013 is a concretely good deep-dive.

With early identification and control, injuries to stem, root, branch, and shoot don’t have to be the four horseman of the Christmas tree apocalypse. Because a winter wonderland without healthy Christmas trees is no winter wonderland at all.

How do I obtain these resources?

Shop Online Anytime: You can buy eBooks or print publications —with FREE Standard Shipping worldwide— from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore at http://bookstore.gpo.gov.

Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

Order by Phone: Call our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.

Visit a Federal depository library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library. You can find the records for most titles in GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

About the author: Our guest blogger is Chelsea Milko, Public Relations Specialist in GPO’s Public Relations Office.


From Prairies to Peaks with Rockies and Roosevelts

April 3, 2013

Guest blogger GPO Public Relations Specialist Emma Wojtowicz reviews this new publication by the U.S. Forest Service that explores the history of the Forest Service’s Rocky Mountain region, including the involvement of two Roosevelts.

From-Prairies-to-Peaks-US-Forest-ServiceThose traveling west-bound for spring break and summer vacation should check out From Prairies to Peaks: A History of the Rocky Mountain Region of the U.S. Forest Service, 1905-2012. This publication focuses on the Rocky Mountain region, which encompasses Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming and is home to 17 national forests and seven national grasslands.  In From Prairies to Peaks, author Anthony Godfrey takes readers on a tour of the Rocky Mountains to learn about the topography, climate and wildlife as well as the history stretching from when Native Americans originally inhabited the region to the preservation efforts made in recent decades by the Forest Service.

Readers must be true aficionados of the West and Rocky Mountains to digest this nearly 400-page publication. The history is very detailed, but very fascinating.  During the development of the West in the 19th century, it was believed that the United States had an abundance of forest resources, and millions of acres of trees were cleared as a result.

After the Civil War, the threat of a timber famine alerted the government to the problem and brought greater attention to forest management. Passed under President Theodore Roosevelt, the Federal Forest Transfer Act of 1905 moved control of the 63 million acres of national forest reserves from the Department of the Interior to the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Forestry, which was renamed the Forest Service.

President-Theodore-Roosevelt-1908-Cartoon-as-Practical-Forester

Image: 1908 editorial cartoon of President Theodore Roosevelt as “A Practical Forester.”  Source: St. Paul Minnesota “Pioneer Press”.

One of the most interesting time periods for the region was the 1920s-1930s. Upkeep and development of the Rocky Mountain region created many jobs for men through New Deal programs during the Great Depression.  In national forests, workers were assigned to tree planting and thinning, insect and rodent control, road building and improvement, telephone line construction, and lookout tower and house construction to increase communication for fire control and timber conservation.

Then during the Dust Bowl, the region played an important role in President Franklin Roosevelt’s Great Plains Shelterbelt Project from 1934-1942, which involved planting a shelterbelt or windbreak of drought-resistant trees and shrubs and from Canada to northern Texas to protect against the winds and prevent erosion.

10-row-shelterbelt-cross-sectionImage: Cross-section of a shelterbelt of various sized evergreens, large and small deciduous trees, and shrubs using the Forest Service-recommended standard of 10 rows that serve as a windbreak and wildlife shelter. Image source: MyFarmlife.com.

The Forest Service assigned the Rocky Mountain region with supervising the planting of more than 217 million trees and shrubs on the windward side of more than 30,000 individual farms. This is just a snapshot of the in-depth history chronicled in this publication.

Planting-first-shelterbelt-tree-OKFrom Prairies to Peaks provides a historical account of one of the lesser known regions in the United States. The West conjures images of cowboys, mountains, hikers and skiers, but there is more to the Rocky Mountain region.

This publication is a great resource for those interested in learning more about the West and the Forest Service. And for those already familiar with the Rocky Mountains region, this book will help you brush up on your history.

Image: Planting the first tree in the Nation’s first shelterbelt on the H.E. Curtis farm near Mangum in Greer county, Oklahoma, on March 18, 1935. Image source: Oklahoma Farm Report.

HOW DO I OBTAIN THIS  PUBLICATION: From Prairies to Peaks: A History of the Rocky Mountain Region of the U.S. Forest Service, 1905-2012?

  • Buy it online 24/7 at GPO’s Online Bookstore.
  • Buy it at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday-Friday, 9am to 4pm, except Federal holidays, (202) 512-0132.
  • Find it in a library.

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