Tag Archives: eucalyptus myths

Cal-IPC Eucalyptus Reassessment: Same Result (for Different Reasons)

[Edited to Add: Cal-IPC did change the rating in its final version.] The California Invasive Plant Council (Cal-IPC) designates eucalyptus as “moderately invasive.” Land managers all over California have used this designation as an excuse to cut down thousands of … Continue reading

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Understanding Eucalyptus in the Bay Area – Dr Joe R. McBride

This article has been republished from the  website of the San Francisco Forest Alliance, with permission. (Edited to add: A somewhat different selection of illustrations has been used.) Dr. Joe McBride of UC Berkeley spoke at the Commonwealth Club in … Continue reading

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John Muir, Eucalyptus, and Happy New Year!

On January 2, 1911, John Muir – founder of the Sierra Club and the man who saved Yosemite – sent out this greeting card. It has a painting of a eucalyptus tree, and a poem about the tree: “From eucalyptus … Continue reading

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Fact Check: Nothing Grows UnderEucalyptus? (Allelopathy)

Like most people in the US, we’ve been listening to some of the political speeches and the discussion around them recently. And we’re rather heartened by a newly emerging trend: fact-checking. In the last few months, one “fact” we’ve heard … Continue reading

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What Adolph Sutro Didn’t Know About the Eucalyptus Forest

Mount Sutro Cloud Forest, a century-old forest of eucalyptus, was planted by former mayor and philanthropist Adolph Sutro (1830-1898). Like the larger and better-known Muir Woods, it’s the last remnant of a forest that covered a much larger area – … Continue reading

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Pt Reyes Light, an Informed Arborist, and Eucalyptus Globulus

We saw this interesting article (reproduced here with permission) on the website/ blog Death of A Million Trees, whose tagline is Saving trees from needless destruction in the San Francisco Bay Area. The Pt Reyes Light is a Pulitzer Prize … Continue reading

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Increasing Biodiversity

The New Scientist, a well-reputed science magazine, ran an editorial recently headed, “Let’s put an end to biosentimentality.” It argued that “While a few introduced species have wreaked havoc, some biologists argue that most increase biodiversity, both directly and by … Continue reading

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Another Eucalyptus Myth: Bird Death (via Audubon)

One of the saddest myths about eucalyptus is that it causes the death of small birds by “beak-gumming.” According to this myth, small birds like kinglets foraging in eucalyptus flowers accumulate gummy residues that suffocate them. It’s all because Californian … Continue reading

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A Forest Full of Birds

Sutro Cloud Forest is always alive with birdsong. We couldn’t identify the birds from their calls; we’re not that expert at birding. We were delighted, therefore, to hear from someone much more knowledgeable. Keith McAllister sent us a list of … Continue reading

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Nativism vs the Environment

When most people think of preserving natural areas, they envision saving green growing things from encroachment by parking lots and housing development. Nativists focus on a different agenda – removing non-native plants and substituting natives. What’s wrong with that? Several … Continue reading

Posted in Environment, Herbicides, Herbicides: Roundup, Garlon, nativism | Tagged , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Euca-phobia and Fire Myths

This is an extensive excerpt from an article by Peter Gray Scott on the subject of the myths surrounding Eucalyptus and fire [with emphasis added]. It is quoted here with permission. —— One by one, myths about eucalyptus are pitched … Continue reading

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“Nature in the City”: Tree-huggers vs Tree-killers

Recently, we posted a reader’s note about a talk from the organization called ‘Nature in the City’ (NC) on the “urban forest.” (Those are NC’s quote-marks; they apparently don’t believe in urban forests). NC is the parent organization of the … Continue reading

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Michael Pollan Takes on Native Plant Ideology

Someone sent us a New York Times magazine article by author and UC Berkeley professor Michael Pollan, he of the locavore food fame. He describes the storm of letters he received when he published a story about his failed attempt … Continue reading

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Letter: Grass fires are worse…

We received this letter from “Bewildered in Berkeley” in response to David Maloney’s letter exonerating eucalyptus in the 1991 Oakland fire. ———— Thanks for telling us about the Oakland-Berkeley Mayors’ Firestorm Task Force analysis of the cause of the 1991 … Continue reading

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Task force report: Trees are not a Primary Fire Hazard

David Maloney, a member of the Task Force investigating the 1991 Oakland Hills fire confirms that even there – in Oakland’s climate of more extremes and less humidity than Mt Sutro’s cloud forest – trees were not the primary problem. … Continue reading

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