Can breeding, biotech bring back the chestnut?

North America’s eastern forests used to have some 4 billion American chestnut trees: large, tall (up to 100 feet), fast-growing trees whose wood made excellent lumber for buildings; whose nuts fed billions of birds and mammals, including people (including Thoreau); whose tannins supplied America’s leather industry. Various sources have called it “the queen of the forest” and “the ideal tree.”

Then something happened.

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O! See 18 Christmas trees all grown up

Visit Secrest Arboretum and see 18 examples of big, tall, still-growing Christmas trees. Read more, get their GPS locations and see photos of all 18. (There’s a slideshow, too, of their needles close up.) The arboretum is on CFAES’s Wooster campus. (Photo: Eastern white pine, Ken Chamberlain, CFAES.)

Invasive species in your woods and how you can stop them

Register by Wednesday, Oct. 11, for the Forest Health: Invasive Species workshop being offered by CFAES’s Ohio Woodland Stewards Program. It’s from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Oct. 18 at the Lodge at Allardale, 141 Remsen Road, Medina, part of the Medina County Park District.

The event, which is for landowners, gardeners and others, will look at the invasive plants, diseases and insects bugging Ohio; how to identify and monitor them; the harm they do to woods and wildlife if left unchecked; and options for controlling them.

Registration is $35. (Photo: European buckthorn, T. Davis Sydnor, Ohio State, Bugwood.org.)

Learn how to cut down a tree safely, and actually get to do it

When it comes to using a chainsaw, there are things you want to cut, like any of Ohio’s millions of still-standing dead ash trees killed by the emerald ash borer pest, and things you don’t want to cut, like … anything not a tree.

A class you can take on Aug. 3 will help you keep them straight. (Photo: iStock.)