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    Climbers' CornerTree Academy

    Biomechanical Models and the Implications for Pruning Practices


    Two studies that demonstrate the innovative application of sophisticated monitoring equipment will be presented. They provide direct and timely implications for pruning strategies.
    The first project (funded by the TREE Fund) investigates the effect of two pruning methods (crown thinning and crown reduction) on the dynamic motion of tree crowns. Six mature Acer saccharinum were fitted with accelerometers. Acceleration and wind speed data were collected for a control period, and then following pruning with one of the two prescribed techniques.
    The second project investigates ice accretion within tree canopies during ice storm events (funded by NSERC-Hydro Quebec Chair on the control of tree growth, Center for Forest Research, University of Québec at Montreal). In this study we simulated freezing rain and then scanned the tree using terrestrial LiDAR. The results from this project are helping to further our understanding of ice accretion on limbs within complex canopy structures.


    With over 15 years’ experience as a practicing arborist, Matt Follett is a graduate of the Niagara Parks Commission School of Horticulture, an ISA Certified Arborist, two-time Atlantic Chapter TCC champion, a Registered Consulting Arborist with ASCA, and is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Urban Forestry at the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM). Matt has taught practical arboriculture and tree climbing since 2001, and has presented on arboricultural topics at regional ISA conferences, research symposia, private training courses, and garden shows.

    Matt’s interest in arboriculture research began early in his career, with a personal goal to provide the most up-to-date tree care to his clients. In 2009 Matt began working at the Centre d’étude de la forêt (CEF), providing technical support and canopy access for researchers at the center, while at the same time he began assisting Andreas Detter (Tree Consult, Germany) in his research work. Matt was involved in projects with both Andreas and Philip van Wassenaer (Urban Forest Innovations, Toronto) at the Biomechanics Symposium in Ohio in 2010. He continued his work with the CEF, and in January of 2011 worked with Charles Nock (Post-Doc at UQAM) in developing the ice accretion experiment on Norway maple and an assessment of the functional traits of urban trees. In June of 2011 Matt began his Master’s at UQAM, focusing on developing a predictive growth model following pruning in urban trees. In 2011 Matt was awarded the Jack Kimmel International Grant, to fund further research in tree biomechanics. Matt continues to work on this and other projects at the Université du Québec à Montréal.

    Climbers' CornerTree Academy

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