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This semi-regular e-newsletter celebrates all-things Pacific madrone, highlighting our conservation and restoration efforts while connecting tree researchers and enthusiasts along the way
New to the ARME this month
Karlina Packard and Annette Kruzic
Karlina and Annette are Pierce County Master Gardeners who are helping us write factsheets about madrone. Karlina says "I grew up on Crater Road, now known as Tehaleh, before moving to Tucson for 5 years, and coming back to raise my family in the beautiful PNW! I worked for airlines and their technology vendors for 15 years, and am now focused on family and gardening! I am also the PTA President for 2019-2021 for two elementary schools, and when I have free time I volunteer with the White River Community Outreach." We are looking forward to getting these factsheets out.

The Collective

Story time
Why does madrone have peeling bark? Here is a Karuk story explaining it.

Living in extremes
While extreme weather like hard frosts, extended drought or extreme heat events can have a lasting effect on madrones, many people consider the tree to be drought-tolerant and adaptable to both current and future climate conditions. One reason for madrone survival is the Ericaceae family association with ericoid mychhoriza. The fungi colonize the root cells and establish hyphal networks around the roots, providing increased water and nutrient absorption while the plant in turn provides the fungus with carbohydrates through photosynthesis. Ericoid mycorrhizal fungi also have hydrolytic and oxidative enzymes that are important in mobilizing nutrients from organic matter and leaf litter. This is a big reason for madrone’s ability to persist through drought and thrive in relatively harsh conditions such as rocky bluffs or soils we may characterize as "nutrient deficient."
Cairney, J. W., & Meharg, A. A. (2003). Ericoid mycorrhiza: a partnership that exploits harsh edaphic conditions. European Journal of Soil Science, 54(4), 735-740.

Featured Disease – Leaf spot
Leaf spots, caused by the fungus Didymosporium arbuticola, have a dark red border and light grey center, where the cuticle has been detached. Fruiting bodies called acervuli form on the upper leaf surface in the spring and release spores during wet weather. This fungus is probably the most commonly seen leaf spot on madrone. Here is a nice photo on TreeSnap showing the symptoms in Oregon., by Richard Sniezko.

Treesnap Update
Keep exploring and expanding the range for madrone:
Furthest north, on Fidalgo Island, WA – By Sharon Baker
Furthest south, near Fort Ord, CA - By Michael Yadrick

"A beautiful tree sits on the north side of Big Chico Creek, shading the picnic table at site No. 34 in lower Bidwell Park. Its thick, smooth lower branches are perfect for climbing, and its form is both rounder and more symmetrical than its relatives at higher elevations. And its occurrence at our low altitude (elevation 197 feet) is rare...." Read more in the Oroville Mercury-Register
written by Laura Lukes, 17 May 2019
Upcoming Events!
The 2019 Urban Forest Symposium will take place on Tuesday, May 21 from 9:00am to 4:00pm. The Honorable Hilary Franz, Washington State's Commissioner of Public Lands, will be joined by local experts from academic, nonprofit, business, and government sectors, for a robust discussion of climate change impacts to the urban forest, and how local communities are taking action. City of Seattle Plant Ecologist, Michael Yadrick, will be presenting "Global weirding impacts on our local urban forests" - with a little madrone info slipped in there. Speaker and program information available at:

WSU Extension Forestry Webinars
Life and Death of Madrone in PNW Forests 

Thursday, May 23rd, 12:05 to 12:55 p.m. or 7:05 to 7:55 p.m.
Register here -


Are all the madrones dying? Join madrone researchers Marianne Elliott from Washington State University and Michael Yadrick from Green Seattle Partnership for a discussion on the condition of Pacific madrone in Washington forests, focusing on its ecology, pests and diseases, and conservation and restoration efforts.

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