Tree Basics Classes and Tree Walks

We offer several FREE classes during the year. We also offer FREE tree walks at various locations in the Charlottesville area as noted below. The walks are usually on trails, but long pants and sturdy footwear are recommended. Since space is limited as noted, registration is required.

The following topics are offered in summer of 2019:

Tree Walk: Pen Park

Friday, May 24, 2019

10:00 to 11:00 a.m., Pen Park, Charlottesville


Saturday, June 15, 2019

11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Pen Park, Charlottesville

Two walks in Pen Park will be offered to the public. (CATS members check the calendar for a member walk on June 1). Explore a small urban forest with Tree Steward guides, Dana Denbar and Susan Mefford. The group will follow the paved trail in a half-mile loop, and learn how to recognize about a dozen native tree species using their leaves, bark, and flowers. The hour-long event is free but registration is required (click link for desired date). Limit 25 per walk.

Terrain: The fitness trail is paved but the pavement is sometimes uneven. At the beginning/end of the walk there is a significant slope. We will cross a small wooden bridge.

Directions: The park is located off East Rio Road on Pen Park Road. After entering Pen Park, take a left just before the tennis courts and park near shelter #2. The group will meet there.

Tree Basics Class: Tree ID in Four Seasons, Part 3: Summer

Saturday, June 29, 2019

10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Ivy Creek Natural Area Education Building, 1780 Earlysville Road, Charlottesville

Tree Steward Emily Ferguson will continue her classes on seasonal tree identification. As summer gets underway, trees have almost completed their growth process for the year with a full canopy of leaves allowing trees to harness energy from the sun. We will use this opportunity to identify trees by their leaf shapes. If the weather is good, a portion of the class will be held outside. The class is free but registration is required (click date link). Limit 25.

Directions: From the parking area, take the path towards the information kiosk and then the right fork to the Education Building.

Tree Walk: Living History at James Monroe’s Highland in the Summer

Friday, July 5, 2019

9:00 to 10:30 a.m.,  James Monroe’s Highland, 2050 James Monroe Parkway, Charlottesville

Come celebrate the July 4th holiday week by joining this free 90-minute walk at James Monroe’s historic Highland property.  Charlottesville Area Tree Stewards have been leading walks at Highland in each season.  Highland’s open spaces afford vistas of mature ash, black walnut, maples, oaks, and other native trees. Tree Steward Sharon Hiner will lead the walk and show you a hemlock and towering white oak that date to Monroe’s time. Learn how to identify trees in the summer using leaves, bark, twigs, form, and many other features.  Discover how Highland trees and tree-ring dating have contributed to historical interpretation. (Walk FULL. Please check back for future walks at James Monroe’s Highland).

Terrain: The walk is  about half a mile, mostly on paved surfaces but some grassy slopes.

Directions:  From Charlottesville take 64 East. Take exit 121A on to Rt. 53. In 3.2 miles, take a slight right turn on to James Monroe Parkway. In 0.8 miles, turn right on to Ashlawn-Highland Drive.

Tree Basics Class:  Trees and Wildlife

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

6:30 to 8:00 p.m., Crozet Library, 2020 Library Ave, Crozet

Are trees important for wildlife?  Yes, very.  Besides providing a wide variety of habitat, trees are central to a complex food web that includes hard (nuts) and soft (berries) mast, leaves, and insects.  All are essential for the survival of our diverse wildlife (fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals).  Learn also about how vital native plants are to the survival of our native species. This talk by Tree Steward Kathy Nepote will increase your awareness of the importance of trees (both living and dead), the complex nature of plant and wildlife interactions, and also point out visible signs of wildlife in our environment. No advance registration is required for this free event.

For information on the 12-week Tree Steward Training Class and volunteering, see Become a Tree Steward Volunteer.