Tree Assessments and Pathway Restoration at Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site

This week we went to Frederick law Olmsted national historic site where retained a lot of knowledge. We had two different projects that we had to complete in four days. Mona and Ezra were the technical experts that helped us through everything. To start off they broke us up in to two groups of three and one group of two. This technique helped us individually because the supervisors had more time to focus on each person.

Another YCC group called, the Future Leaders assisted us on the pathway project on our first day so we completed a lot of work which was great start to the week. We learned a lot by by doing this simple pathway because we didn’t realize a small path would be so much work. We learned how to edge, weed over growing plants, lay out the stone dust,  tamp and use different tools for each given task. We used bamboo sticks and strings to mark the path on a particular distance to keep it parallel and maintain the historical look the Olmsted wanted. This project was by far the most physical labor but our determination along with our frequent breaks helped us pull through.

Our second project was led by Ezra and he focused on tree identification and plotting/ mapping trees. We learned how to use the GPS units, avoid poison ivy, write tree assessments and to find the DBH of trees. We also learned how trees can help our environment. This was actually fun and satisfying  for us because it felt good to differentiate, for example a Norway maple from a sugar maple when most of us didn’t even know how to identify a maple leaf.

At the end of the project it was satisfying seeing our work done we had to identify over 200 trees. We learned how to work together and actually listen to each other; that was a big part of fishing the project. We learned so much in only four days that our accomplishment was unbearably meaningful. We’re glad we had the chance to work at FRLA and are looking forward for other opportunities much like these two projects.

Tree Assessments:

photo (4)    photo (3)    photo (1)


Pathway Restoration:





photo (2)




5 responses to “Tree Assessments and Pathway Restoration at Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site

  1. Well Uriah, I miss you this week.

    In this past blog you presented a good review of the pathway renovation. Here is an update.

    I checked it yesterday, before the storm and took some photos of the drains and puddles. It all looked fine. But, ahem, well, sorry but after a big storm last night, the pathway was washed out. Really, unbelievable. There is a big gully in the center of it now.

    The YCC summer youth crew are going to rake it out and re-tamp it tomorrow. Don’t worry, this happens, and that is why we have expert landscape professional apprentices. We have to keep doing these routine chores over and over to keep it nice for the visitors. Bye for now, Mona


    • It is a technical measurement of how fat the tree trunk is.
      This helps one determine how old it is, although, it could grow slow for many years and still be skinny and old, or it could grow very fast when young and be large, but still young.


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