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Thats 2 trees in the past week. There are a few more tree branches ready to go on the South West side and on the East side near 9th Street. One theory is that all the dog urine and especially the toxic dump-like runoff from the dogrun are affecting all of the trees nearby. You can really smell the urine now that its hot out, and if enough urine gets in the tree roots or bark at the base it can make the trees more vulnerable to disease. Dog urine is highly acidic. Simply put, dogs’ urine “burns” the tree’s trunk to the point that the tree becomes susceptible to diseases, pests, dehydration and nutrient loss. It's time to either get those dogs potty trained, or else we need to find a better place for them to piss than on all our trees and lawns.
That's three large branches down within the last month or so. Hoping that the Parks people will be performing an urgent audit of the soundness of the TSP trees before someone is seriously injured or killed!
I see a new pedestrian seating plaza with complementary Shake Shack, Bank of America terminal, and acai bowl automat on the horizon!
Perhaps a flurry of calls to 311 will spur the city tree docs to do a complete tree health survey?!
Giovanni, Please provide evidence.
Anonymous 8:13am - Giovanni is not wrong. Dog urine is one of the worst things for tree and plant roots. It adds salt to the soil (which, unsurprisingly) prevents plant roots from being able to take up water and nutrients, since the H2O molecules will bond to anything saline in the soil, and the other compounds in urine kill off beneficial sources of nutrition in the soil, like mycorrhizae and nitrogen. Too much dog urine in a tree pit or lawn area will definitely result in the long-term dehydration and starvation of a tree. I'm a professional horticulturist and a licensed citizen pruner, and the impact of dog urine on our urban plant life is a major concern that we are taught to minimize as much as possible. The problem, as I see it, is that dog owners seem refuse to understand the impact their pooch's piss has on our urban plant life (not to mention a callous disregard for tree pits that have signs asking folks to curb their dogs). I don't know whether this is the issue with the TSP trees or not, but it could certainly be a legitimate problem. These are some of the oldest trees in the city, and sadly, even our tree elders can't live forever. It could definitely be a combination of environmental stress and age that is causing the rapid loss/damage to our park's trees.
em, "I am a horticulturist" is not evidence. Not too long ago, a horde of "arborists" were telling us there was nothing wrong with "the bendy tree".The fact is, trees on the sidewalk receive not only more dog pee but a whole host of other toxins, and their branches are not falling, but trees in TSP, behind fences, where few (if any) dogs go, are falling apart.
Anonymous 10:18am - what part of the rest of my explanation of the impact of soil health on plants did you interpret to NOT be evidence? Also, it's a shame that someone who likely has no professional education or training in caring for plants is unwilling to listen to someone who DOES have that knowledge. I never said I was an arborist, and I don't work for the Parks Department, so don't paint me with that brush. But I can tell you that any professional who deals with our urban flora will echo the exact sentiment I shared. And for what it's worth, I agree that Parks needs to step up and better maintain our park trees, citywide. It's a shame this mayor thinks so little of parks that the funding needed for that very work is minimal, at best. Maybe instead of grousing at commenters on this site, you can take some action to advocate the elected officials in this city to better fund the Parks Department so that this kind of urban canopy loss is minimized. (An aside - the only reason we don't hear about tree branches falling from street trees very often is because the Parks Forestry crew that deals with street trees has better funding than the crew that maintains trees in parks like TSP. Our street trees actually die at a much more alarming rate than our park trees because of the very issues you mentioned in your reply, but they also tend to die young and get replaced more quickly. It's easier to notice the death/decline of a large, old-growth tree in a park than a small, young sapling in a sidewalk pit, especially if it's just swapped out for another sapling.)
The dogs pee on the fences all over the park, and the piss goes into the soil, even in the closed off areas. The stench is getting to be so bad you cant walk by the dog run without gagging. If anyone thinks all this dog piss from hundeds of dogs every day doesn't affect the trees over time then you must have another theory why so many trees are rotting and falling down? We have several trees in on our block that have been killed by dog urine and we had to build brick planters around the planters to save the new trees.
I [generally] like dogs. I [often] don't like dog owners. This mantra helps me to deal with owners' often inconsiderate behavior.Love the dog, hate the owner's behavior...
em, If it were grass or flowers you were talking about, I might be less skeptical. Wood degrading to the point of collapse is not from dog pee. I'm not saying a steady diet of dog pee wouldn't kill a plant, but what evidence is there that that's the problem in TSP? I don't think it's unreasonable to ask that.
Who cares what you are or are not skeptical about. This is not your area of expertise.
Credentials do not equal evidence. Think about how long it would take to degrade wood in the upper reaches of a tree. If the toxins were that strong, there would have been evidence much sooner, such as to the leaves or bark, or surrounding plants. This tree isn't even accessible to dogs!
These hundred year old plus hardwoods are experiencing damage and loss not from Fido taking a leak but a lack of care and pruning. A Urban tree over one hundred years is old for a Urban environment it's that simple they need extra care and that has not been forth coming...
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