The Grand Junction District’s Community Forestry Program provides technical assistance to Western Colorado communities.

Arbor Day celebration in Cedaredge at their local arboretum.
Arbor Day celebration in Cedaredge at their local arboretum.

The Grand Junction District’s Community Forestry Program provides technical assistance to Western Colorado communities.

Key components of our Community Forestry Program include:

  • Helping organize and support local tree boards
  • Conduct street and park tree inventories
  • Conduct Insect and Disease assessments
  • Assist with tree planting and tree care needs
  • Technical assistance on how to plant and maintain trees
  • Provides information and workshops on tree care

Caring for our trees not only protects our investment, but provides benefits for the future. People often choose community trees for their beauty and ability to provide shade. Trees benefit communities by providing urban forests that many times include social attachment to individual trees. They also improve air quality, control erosion, moderate the sun’s effects and attract wildlife.

Tree City USA

The National Arbor Day Foundation (NADF) encourages tree planting and environmental stewardship through educational programs. Two NADF programs that the Grand Junction District is quite involved with are Tree City USA and Arbor Day celebrations. For a community to become a Tree City USA, four requirements must be met to receive this honor:

  1. Have a tree board or city department that is responsible for the trees
  2. A tree care ordinance
  3. A community forestry program with an annual budget of at least $2 per capita
  4. An Arbor Day observance and proclamation

If your community is interested in becoming a Tree City USA, please contact the Grand Junction District.

Several Western Slope communities are proud Tree City USA members:

Basalt's first Arbor Day celebration as a Tree City USA.
Basalt’s first Arbor Day celebration as a Tree City USA.
Community Years Population
Aspen
22
6,500
Basalt
3
3,800
Carbondale
20
6,500
Cedaredge
20
2,300
Delta
30
9,000
Fruita
21
12,600
Glenwood Springs
29
10,000
Grand Junction
31
59,200
Silt
16
3,000

Recommended Tree List for Western Colorado

Proper tree selection is important when replacing or adding trees to your urban forest. A tree’s shape, characteristics, growth rate and size at maturity should be considered when choosing a location for it.

Different species of trees are recommended depending on where you live in Western Colorado and how much water you can provide.

Champion Tree Program

American Forests maintains a national registry of the largest trees in the nation.The Colorado Tree Coalition (CTC) administers the Champion Tree Program in Colorado and the CSFS assists the CTC by measuring potential champions, publicizing the program and educating Coloradoans about our “champion” trees.

If you think that you have a potential champion, please contact the Grand Junction District.

Where are Current Champion Trees Located in Western Colorado?

This Giant Sequoia is located outside Hotchkiss and is the State Champion. The State Champion Arizona Cypress is growing on the Colorado Mesa University campus in Grand Junction. This Bolleana Poplar is our State Champion and can be found in downtown Glenwood Springs.
This Giant Sequoia is located outside Hotchkiss and is the State Champion. The State Champion Arizona Cypress is growing on the Colorado Mesa University campus in Grand Junction. This Bolleana Poplar is our State Champion and can be found in downtown Glenwood Springs.

Street and Park Tree Inventory

A tree inventory of the community’s public trees is often the first step toward effectively managing the community forest. A tree inventory can be very useful to the community, as it will identify tree species, hazardous trees, pruning needs, insect problems, incidence of disease and open spaces available for tree planting. The inventory is an integral part of any long-range plan to sustain the urban forest.

The Grand Junction District can conduct full street and park tree inventories for local communities and subdivisions. Our inventories are based in the Geographical Information System (GIS) software ArcGIS that is used to locate and pinpoint right-of-way trees on aerial photos and then attach tree data to the tree point.

Any communities interested in developing a tree inventory or have the CSFS conduct a tree inventory, contact the Grand Junction District.

To see an example of a completed tree inventory, view the map (324 KB PDF) of the Town of Carbondale. This map shows all the trees inventoried, the data collected on each tree is housed in the ArcGIS software program. The River Valley Ranch Master Association located in Carbondale also recently completed an inventory. View the map (431 KB PDF).

Tree and Shrub Pruning

Urban trees and shrubs require pruning to help make them strong and healthy and to prevent any damage during strong storms.

The following information can help the landowner make the right choices and use the proper techniques when it comes to taking care of the plants in our landscapes.

Tree and Shrub Planting

You have selected your tree or shrub and the location has been chosen, now comes the planting. This is where the plant will be located for the rest of its life! It is very important to plant at the right depth and remove as much of the packaging the tree came in as possible.

Following the steps in these handouts will give your tree or shrub the opportunity for a long and healthy life for your family to enjoy.

Community Forestry Links

To learn more about trees in your community, please visit:

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