• What's New?

    The latest news and education information from OCT

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    GLH Partners in Profile

    With help from OCT, Oregon environmental historian and documentary filmmaker David Hedberg is making a film called “Seeds of Peace,” it is expected to be finished next year and shown in communities with peace trees.

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    A documentary in the making

    Portland filmmaker David Hedberg is documenting Peace Trees- the meaning, the people, the places and more.

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    OCT's 2023 Grant Awardees

    Cities across Oregon recieved grant awards from OCT. Read more about the 2023 recipients.


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    New urban forestry expert

    Brittany Oxford, a community assistance forester was hired by the Oregon Department of Forestry in 2022.


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    Portland Filmmaker Documents Peace Tree Journey   


    Portland filmmaker David Hedberg is the featured profile forAugust 2023 on the website of the Green Legacy Hiroshima organization in Japan. Oregon Community Trees has been supporting Hedberg to make a documentary about the effort to plant peace trees in Oregon and the impact that has had on communities across the state. The trees were grown from seeds collected from trees in Hiroshima that survived the atom bombing of that city in 1945.


    Hedberg will be traveling to Hiroshima this November to give Japanese audiences a preview of the unfinished documentary he’s calling “Seeds of Peace.” He expects eventually to screen the completed documentary in many of the three dozen Oregon cities and towns that have planted peace trees.


    Find additional details on Hedberg and the project here.


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  • Oregon Community Trees gives grants to six Oregon communities to boost Oregon Arbor Month events

    SALEM,Ore. – Oregon Community Trees (OCT) has awarded a total of almost $3,000 to six Oregon communities to help them boost their Oregon Arbor Month events. During the month of April, Oregonians across the state celebrate their community trees and the many benefits they bring.

    “These grants help smaller communities achieve a lot of what they hope to do during Arbor Month, from planting trees to engaging youth in tree-related education and activities,” said Morgan Holen, Chair of OCT’s Grants Subcommittee.

    To be eligible for a grant, a community must be a Tree City USA. To become a Tree City USA, communities must meet requirements for having basic tree-care policies and management in place. About 70 Oregon communities meet this standard.

    Since 2014, OCT has awarded 56 grants to 39 different Oregon Tree City USA communities. This year’s recipients are:


    OCT is giving $750 to the City for trees, planting supplies, and educational materials to support their Arbor Month celebration. Some 130 fifth-grade students at McNary Heights Elementary will be taking part in planting a variety of trees at the local municipal Big River Golf Course on April 28. This is the first grant OCT has made to Umatilla, which has been a Tree City USA for five years.


    Klamath Falls is using the $500 it received from OCT to buy a reusable 3’ x 6’ mesh-type banner with grommets and a collapsible aluminum stand with carrying case. The banner will promote the Klamath Tree League, the City’s Tree AdvisoryBoard and Arbor Day celebration partner to increase awareness of this local urban forestry education resource and advocate. Klamath Falls is celebrating 20 years as a Tree City USA this year.

    Lincoln City

    OCT is helping Lincoln City Parks and Recreation cover the cost of a native Pacific dogwood to be planted at the Community Center and a sign for the tree. School children,Teen Center patrons and community members will plant the tree and dedicate it.Taft High School students will participate in the planting as well as a contest to name the tree. Forestry students at the high school will also give short talks about the benefits of trees. The $500 grant will also help pay for contest prizes to support the community’s Arbor Month celebration at the Community Center. Lincoln City has held Tree City USA status for 15 years.


    Few Oregon cities have enjoyed Tree City USA status as long as La Grande, at 33 years. This year the City is receiving $395 for prizes to give to winners of the annual Arbor Day Poster Contest for fourth and fifth-grade students. The City’s Parks and Recreation Department will host a field day for theparticipating classes with tree-themed presentations and activity stations,ending with the announcement of the poster contest winners. All 200+ posters will be displayed at La Grande’s public library throughout April to celebrate Oregon Arbor Month.


    Monterey cypress are native to only a tiny strip of California coastline. Seafarers have long brought back seeds of this picturesque tree to plant in the Newport area, making the trees a highly recognizable feature on this part of the Oregon coast. A number of the cypress were removed during redevelopment projects in the south beach area, so Newport Parks and Recreation is getting $444 to buy a specimen Monterey cypress. The tree will be planted at the south end of the Yaquina Bay Bridge, which opened in 1936. The grant will also cover printing costs for tree-related educational materials. Newport has been a Tree City USA for 11 years.


    Sweet Home is receiving $381 to help pay for eight new shade trees to be planted in the City’s new fenced dog park inside Northside Park. Two of the trees are stately Allee elms with attractive exfoliating bark for year-round interest. The Linn County community has been a Tree City USA for 36 years.


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  • Oregon Department of Forestry hires new urban forestry expert to help communities statewide - 12/29/2022


    SALEM, Ore. – People across Oregon in the new year will be getting help on urban tree-related issues from Brittany Oxford, a community assistance forester hired recently by the Oregon Department of Forestry.

    “Brittany will be working closely with representatives from various cities, counties, regional governments, tribal nations, civic and non-profit organizations, and schools and colleges,” said ODF’s Urban Forestry Manager Scott Altenhoff. “She’ll be giving technical assistance and leadership to help improve green infrastructure and solve tree-related issues.”


    Altenhoff said Oxford will be the urban forestry team’s lead in forming and refining local community forestry management. This includes:

    Encouraging tree inventories and assessments

    Providing model policies, plans, and regulations

    Helping set up citizen advisory boards and community engagement programs

    Consulting on urban forest maintenance programs

    Providing professional training for agency staff

    “Climate change and many other threats, such as introduced pests and diseases, are seriously impacting urban trees,” said Oxford. “So I’m excited to help people learn more about their urban forest and what they can do to better preserve and enhance the trees around them.”


    Before joining ODF, Oxford worked most recently for the City of Portland’s Urban Forestry program, helping with their second street tree inventory. Before that, she worked at Pistils Nursery in north Portland, propagating and caring for plants, working with customers, writing a twice monthly blog and controlling pests.


    Oxford also has extensive experience in the Rocky Mountain region. She worked as a research assistant for the Center for Natural Lands Management. Here role there was studying pollination ecology in endangered prairie systems and presenting research findings.


    After graduating with a degree in Environmental Science from Northern Arizona University in 2017, she worked in Arizona as an Americorp field botany intern for various federal land management agencies. There, she surveyed areas burned by wildfires, collected and processed seeds of wild plants for later sowing, and checked to see how well reseeding was going in areas where native plant life was being restored. 


    She also had earlier experience as a forest monitoring technician for the Landscape Conservation Initiative and as a field research assistant for the Merriam-Powell Center for Environmental Research. At the latter she focused on pollinator research, including plant and insect identification. 


    Oxford replaces Katie Lompa, who retired earlier this year from ODF after decades of service as a community assistance forester.