Marshfield, WI (OnFocus) The City of Marshfield is designated as a Tree City USA by the Arbor Day Foundation for the 38th consecutive year.
The nationwide program meant to enhance and expand urban forests, using the following criteria for recognition: maintaining a tree board or department, having a community tree ordinance, spending at least $2 per capita on urban forestry, and celebrating Arbor Day.
Marshfield is one of over 3,400 communities who have made a commitment for caring for its urban forest.
“Urban forestry is the care and management of trees in our urban environment and community. The urban forest is a resource just like roads, water, and electricity,” said City Forester Mark Ryskiewicz. “Trees provide benefits from aesthetic value, energy savings, storm water retention, and creating healthier lives.”
The annual Arbor Day celebration with local schools on May 1 was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which closed schools. Originally, the City planned to team up with the Marshfield High School agriculture class to plant trees in the terrace in front of the high school on E. Becker Road, and to instruct on the right method of planting. The event is rescheduled for fall.
In 2019, the City of Marshfield pruned 200 trees, removed 75, and planted 30.
“We have 100 bare root trees delivered and installed in our two gravel beds that are to be planted this upcoming fall,” said Ryskiewicz. “We are also looking to increase our pruning efforts moving forward, specifically structure pruning younger trees.”
The proximity of trees to utilities, people, and vehicles must be taken into consideration when decisions are made about planting, pruning, and removal. Insects like the Emerald Ash Borer and diseases affect tree health and inform those decisions as well.
“From a yearly standpoint, we conduct pruning during winter and summer, removals during winter, Emerald Ash Borer injections early summer, and planting when fall arrives,” Ryskiewicz said. “We also field homeowner calls and requests year around regarding questions related to urban forestry.”
Ryskiewicz joining the newly created City Forester position at the Parks and Recreation Department last June. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Urban Forestry from the University of Wisconsin — Stevens Point, has been an ISA certified arborist for 9 years and ISA tree risk assessment qualified for 5 years. His work includes experience in both the private and public sectors.