Madison Parks Forestry
What are these spots on my tree's leaves?
posted August 18, 2016 11:28 AM
This is called "tar spot" and is common on maples, boxelders and other local trees. Initially the spots are small and yellowish and may remain relatively small or may enlarge in the growing season. As the tar spot progresses, the center may become raised and turn black. This is a non-threatening fungus.
Does the tar spot kill or damage my tree?
For most trees, tar spot is not a serious disease and is primarily cosmetic and will not kill the tree.
What should I do if my tree is infected?
You can reduce or even eliminate tar spot by simply removing in the autumn the fallen, infected leaves from around the base of the tree. These leaves can be used as compost or burned (where permitted). Treatment is rarely, if ever warranted. You may further consult with a county UW-Extension horticultural professional.
Parks Forestry provides tree planting, pruning and maintenance for over 96,000 trees along Madison's 700 miles of city streets. In addition, the Forestry section is responsible for hundreds of thousands of trees that are located in the City's parks, golf courses and cemetery.
Parks forestry staff are trained to follow rigid safety standards. Whether planting a new tree or cleaning up after a major wind storm, the safety of the workers, the public and property are never compromised.
Parks Forestry Section: (608) 266-4816, Monday - Friday 7am - 3pm
Now Accepting Heritage Tree Nominations for 2016
Some trees have stood watch over lives and events that represent the fabric of our city. Madison is fortunate to have a rich and colorful historic heritage. By viewing the past through the unique perspective of trees, we hope this heritage will endure for future generations. The Madison Parks Forestry section established the Heritage Tree Program to foster appreciation and inspire awareness of the contribution of city owned street trees and park trees to the City's history and heritage. The program is a way for citizens to officially recognize special and significant city owned trees in the community.
The goals of the Heritage Tree Program are:
- to recognize and designate individual city owned trees or groves of significance.
- to educate and inform the public about the value and history of city owned trees.
- to promote appreciation of the city owned trees.
- to maintain and protect these trees as part of Madison's history & heritage.
- If you would like to nominate a city owned park or street tree for the 2016 Heritage Tree Award, you can find nomination forms, criteria and more information on Madison Heritage Trees.
Nominations for the 2016 Heritage Tree Award are due September 15, 2016.
Storm Damaged Trees
Forestry urges residents to contact the Forestry office (7am - 3pm, Monday - Friday) at (608) 266-4816 or through "report a problem." After 3pm, police dispatch may be contacted at (608) 266-4275. Visit the Storm Damage page to learn more about who to call and when. Damage to private trees is the property owner's responsibility.
Replanting Terrace City Owned Street Trees
The City of Madison uses the "Right Tree in the Right Place" criteria when determining which kind of tree to plant. This criteria promotes urban forest diversity and is applied equitably throughout the city. Most trees will be replaced within 3 planting cycles. Forestry plants twice a year, in the spring and fall. Per City Ordinance 10.10, the Forestry Section determines the trees species and planting location. There are no choices for adjacent property owners.
City Forestry responds to concerns and complaints about city owned terrace tree located between the sidewalk and street. The staff will leave a door tag with information on the adjacent property owner's front door.