Radio Times

Planting and Protecting Trees

September 6, 2011


Picnickers shade themselves from the sun under a stand of trees in Fairmount Park in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Sabina Louise Pierce)

Hour 2

Trees around the country are under assault from pests and disease.  There’s the Asian Longhorn beetle that’s destroying maples, Thousand-cankers fungus that attacks Black Walnuts, and the Emerald Ash Borer that’s wiping out ash trees.  And all this is occurring as we continue to learn more about the critical role trees play in the environment.  Besides providing oxygen and capturing carbon dioxide, a tree can cut a home’s energy costs in half.  Trees also soak up pollution, prevent soil erosion and flooding, and provide habitat for wildlife.  Well, Philadelphia is trying to plant a lot more trees. Mayor Nutter has set a goal of 300,000 by 2015 and a new initiative in the region wants one million in the ground by 2020.  This hour, we celebrate trees. Marty talks with PAUL MEYER, director of the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania and DREW BECHER, President of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society.  We’ll also hear from SVEN SPICHIGER, an entomologist with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, about the bugs devastating trees in our region.

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