Thursday, December 18, 2008

ISA HK/China --- Absence of SM and DSM for CSGF 2008


Dear Station Members,


Please kindly be reminded that the Station Manager & Deputy Station Managers will be absent from HK from Dec 25 - 28, 2008, to attend the Inaugural China Southern Green Fair (CSGF, http://www.csgreenfair.com/ ) in Guzhen Town, Zhongshan City, Guangdong Province, China. For any matter dealing with ISA HK/China, please kindly try to contact them outside this period as communication in CSGF may not be as comfortable as in HK. The mobile no. (+852-9090-6719) of the Station Manger will roam into China & it will be up to the signal there for connection. E-mail is always a challenge in China & please do not be surprised for any black-out throughout.

ISA HK/China has actually greater expectation in CSGF rather than IPM, since CSGF will be attended by the greenery industry of Southern China, which is the intended starting point of our Station due to logistics. ISA HK/China has seen organizations rushing to capital cities like Beijing & Shanghai's to introduce themselves, thinking that by getting to the top, their influence will spread below. The Station Manger has business dealing in China for the past 28 years & has seen various groups wasting resources & manpower for little gain. Since ISA HK/China is run by volunteers without pay but with only enthusiasm & contribution, we do not have extras to give away. Every bullet must hit the target without waste.

Many groups knocking on China's door may not appreciate that the Land of Old Dragons is not full of intellectuals practicing western ideas in their acceptance of anything new. +80 percent of the China population are still peasants. Peasants have to be guided in their own way & in their own language. ISA HK/China has acknowledged the history of political development in recent China & has decided to follow their success rather than forcing dogmatic western approach at once. We shall induce them with a mixture of ISA knowledge, morals, research & traditional Chinese culture to be flushed down with splendid eloquence. We shall see whether this strategy would work or not very soon. If not, we are always flexible & morphological.

Our success in IPM has given us much encouragement in introducing ourselves at the CSGF this time. CSGF has also given us more support by having more seminars & demonstrations than IPM which is primarily a Plant Show. We shall reciprocate their kindness by putting up an even better performance to gain future support & partnership. We always have vision far & beyond.

Looking forward to bringing good news from CSGF to all of you after next week.

We are determined to spread ISA into China like coca-cola, one tree at a time.

best regards,


Sammy Au

Station Manager


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

ISA HK/China --- CSGF seminar and demonstration invitation

贵方好:

国际树木学会 (www.isa-arbor.com) 属下的 中国地区分会 (http://isahkchina.blogspot.com) 将会于 12月27日 9 - 12时 在 中国(中山)南方绿化苗木博览会 (www.csgreenfair.com) 里 举办 '国际绿化树木规格' ,'国际标准的树木种植方法' 和 '国际标准的树木修剪方法' 三套讲座,又会于 当天下午2 - 5时 在 '古镇文化公园' 里 表演 '国际标准的树木攀爬方法' 一场。另、12月28日早上将会表演 '12米高大树流缆修剪及整株移除方法'。

所有演出,在国内尚属首次,全部由本会 '树艺师''攀树师' 义务进行,志在推广本会服务。恭请贵方光临指导,不胜荣幸!

此致

国际树木学会 中国地区分会 会长 暨 总考牌官

欧永森

谨启

2008年12月16日

Monday, December 15, 2008

ISA HK/China --- China Tree News (Liriodendron spp)







*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Attached is a research article by a Mainland Chinese University published in national newspaper regarding their findings on adopting Liriodendron cultivars in China landscape.

Liriodendron has been thought to be a landscaping tree only suitable for growing in northern China for years already. However, ETF has taken trial production for the indigenous Liriodendron chinensis since 2006 & has found the L. chinensis growing without difficulties in Guangdong climate so far from seeds. Pictures of the L. chinensis in ETF are attached for general reference.

L. chinensis naturally grows with a Central Leader, & would maintain a +60% Live Crown Ratio if not disturbed. It has been found to be a rather slow growing tree in ETF despite overseas reports, & would grow two times a year in spring & autumn primarily. It has been found to be relatively pest resistant & responded well to PHC treatment. The tree would naturally develop into Tear Drop Shape which is the best shape for wind resistance if Structural Pruning can be provided.

Liriodendron species has hardly been promoted in HK landscape like many other indigenous Chinese species which are now undergoing discovery by the Chinese landscapers one by one. China has always maintained a pragmatic approach in choosing their Urban Trees since their Landscape Bureau would need to care for their trees from cradle to grave. Their Landscape Engineers also appear to take an attitude in their Street Tree Selection by not going for 'flowering' & 'scent' alone. However, they equally face the problem of having limited space in Tree Installation which appears to be a universal challenge in our cities.

L. chinensis has a unique leaf shape like a traditional Chinese costume. In fact, that's how it gets its name over the years. It would be good to see this new species to go on trial in HK some time for enrichment in our local Tree Selection.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

ISA HK/China --- HK Tree News (Tree Work Accident in Yuen Long)

*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Attached is yet another Tree Work Accident (http://orientaldaily.on.cc/) given by the media today in Yuen Long of yesterday.

As reported, the work involved removing a few large trees for site clearance in a Govt construction project. It was carried out by construction workers employed by a 'Specialist Contractor' in certain relevant category deemed to fit for the work. No Arborist involvement was mentioned in the process. As one of the tree was lifted by crane onto the lorry, it was said to have apparently lost balance & fell to strike 8 no. of used vehicles below in a scrap yard. Luckily no one was hurt, or the media would hunt blood after the recent Stanley Tree Failure.

ISA HK/China emphasizes all the time that Tree Work is specialist work & should be supervised on site by trained professionals like Arborists. We recommend Tree Work is to be overlooked by a minimum requirement of Certified Tree Worker (CTW), if not an Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA) (http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/2008/08/isa-hkchina-independent-practicing.html) . IPA was designed to upgrade our clerical Certified Arborists (CA) to be able to manage realistic field operation, & not be afraid to get their hands dirty. We recommend our IPA to stand on site all day to supervise Tree Work & file report after all is finished. If an IPA was employed in the event as above, he/she may have a lot to answer as an independent third party to everybody.

HK may become harder to change in our Tree Work system when compared to China as anticipated in its complex contracting & administrative procedures. ISA HK/China will push ISA Arboriculture into China as our duty & hope Tree Work in our Motherland may become safer & better to show the world.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."


Thursday, December 4, 2008

ISA HK/China --- IPM China 2008 report
















*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Our team of Station Manager, Deputy Station Managers & key Station Members have just returned from IPM China 2008 & what a shock we have given to the Chinese !!

Some facts would give tell-tale:

Out of the 500 name cards that the Station Manger brought with him to IPM, only 43 were left after 3 days. The seminar on International Tree Standards & ISA was jam packed with over 100 audience. The Station Manager was regretting that he did not bring along a pair of sun glasses to stop the flash glares from cameras. The Station Manger was interviewed at least 10 times by various China newspapers & was chased after for power point & lecture materials by various professionals. There were too many visitors wanting to join the trial climb at the Tree Climbing demonstration that the organizer called up the Station Manger to cut short to avoid chaos. The tree climbing videos we showed have stunned everybody that some were asking what camera tricks we have put in to make it look so realistic.

There were many other events & behaviours unseen in western trade shows & the above are only the typical for us.

The FAQ at the show appeared to be:

1. How much do I need to pay to 'obtain' the ISA credentials like the Chinese equivalents? Do you run 'Package Training' to guarantee my success? I must make sure that it is money worth.
2. What is Arboriculture & ISA? If ISA is 84 years old, how come we have never heard of it in China over the years?
3. Why don't ISA translate all their information into Chinese so that we can understand?
4. Can we not use a lifting platform to do Tree Work instead of Tree Climbing & Rigging?
5. Our local Govt will be happy to work with ISA HK/China to develop ISA Arboriculture in China. We can see a great future for ISA credentials in China. However, you must first 'certify' some of our officials (apparently without testing) so that they can be seen as leaders to gain support from senior levels & public. This will also help our funding application. Can you do that?
6. What's wrong with our current practice? We have been doing it for years. China has different trees from the rest of the world & is the 'Mother of Landscaping' with our diversified species. Don't you agree?

Along with other enquiries, we have thrown in a bottle of coca-cola into China during the Cultural Revolution written in Chinese.

We can feel now that our brothers & sisters have picked their ears on us this round. The have heard talks as powerful as Rev Billy Graham at the seminars, & have seen equipment & techniques never imagined before. The Land of Old Dragons will try to maintain a sceptical attitude, but for how long?

Our next bomb into China will be the CSGF in Dec 26 - 28 in Zhongshan City, Guangdong Province. This will be a trade show attended by Landscape Bureaus, Contractors, Nurserymen & Designers. We shall give more seminars, Tree Climbing demonstration & Rigging practice. This time we shall also fell a 12m tall x 0.8m DBH dead Celtis in front of public eyes within the show compound.

ISA HK/China has punched a hole into the Bamboo Curtain in the Land of Old Dragons with our eloquence & flexibility. Very soon, the torrent of ISA Arboriculture will burst in at no time.

May the Good Lord give us strength.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."










Thursday, November 27, 2008

ISA HK/China --- 2008 ISA Brisbane Conference











*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

This is all but a late report on the 2008 ISA Brisbane Conference held in Australia this May. The original issuance of the report also clashed with the Sizuan Earthquake at the time & the information was then put aside for a while. Then the Stanley Tree Failure caused heavy delay to the preparation of the information which was then scattered & ignored. Therefore, to our Aussie friends who wondered why, we would like to say a big sorry for the late arrival.

The Brisbane Conference was organized with splendid arrangement like any other ISA International Conference with an array of renowned speakers such as Dr Thomas Smiley of Bartlett Tree Research, Dr Brian Kane of University of Massachusetts, Dr Ken James of Melbourne University, Dr Francesco Ferrini of University of Florence, Prof Francis Schwarze of Albert-Ludwigs-Universidad, Switzerland, Dr David Longsdale of UK Forestry Commission, etc. Each belongs to a speciality of his own & the seminars were full of latest research on the relevant subject.

To target the specific needs of our territory, the Station Manager had selectively attended workshops & seminars on Tree Failures, Tree Biomechanics, Wood Decay & Fungal Strategy, Termites & Wood Destroying Insects, Tree Hazards & Assessments, Root Cutting & Tree Stability, Wood Strength Properties of Urban Trees, Veteran Tree Management & Ground Penetrating Radars. All information collected has been beneficial for our development in our territory of HK, Macau, Taiwan & China.

The Station Manager had also taken the opportunity while there to study the Urban Tree Design, Tree Work Equipment & Techniques. All were fascinating & photos were taken as per attached for public viewing & comparison.

Some of the research collected as variant from conventional knowledge are given below:

1. Small drill holes would attract more decay than bigger holes due to favourable growing condition preferred by fungi. Therefore, drill bigger holes so that oxygen can get in to impede the development of Heart Rot Fungi. This findings may affect those of us in choosing micro-drill for wood resistance in Decay Detection. An ordinary electric drill may actually do the tree less harm. (Schwarze)

2. Trees produces polyphoenolic deposits via tyloses to resist fungal spread. (Schwarze)

3. Fungi attack Cambium Zone to initiate the formation of Barrier Zone. Do not damage this zone by any drilling or boring device. Diagnostic drilling will cause irreversible fungal attack in this zone. (Schwarze)

4. Rejection of the t/R ratio <0.3 = Hazard (Schwarze)

5. Only when Cambium is damaged, Wall 4 Barrier Zone will be produced. (Schwarze)

6. Why CODIT does not work sometimes --- Sugars in tree can not be turned into defense if temp < 10C. Fungi can attack tree cells during dormancy period. (Schwarze)

7. Keep all root cuts beyond dripline --- > 5 x DBH is safest, 3 x DBH is as close as you can get. (Smiley)

8. Risk of Root Failure --- Critical if +50% roots with significant decay or decay is uphill or at opposite lean. High if +33%. Moderate if <33%. +15% rot in root is considered significant decay.(Smiley)

9. Risk assessment is based on risk awareness, not risk diversion. (Lonsdale)

10. Under UK laws, it may be an offence if a failed tree is removed before all evidence is gathered for legal proceedings. (Lonsdale)

11. In a legal pursuit, the competence of the Tree Inspector, method of assessment, timing, record, policy & instruction of work, can all be challenged in Court in UK. (Lonsdale)

ISA HK/China will be attending the 2008 IPM China in two day's time & this will be the kind of knowledge we shall bring up to the Chinese. We shall be telling the Chinese that Tree Work is a specialist subject which should be handled by trained professionals such as Arborists, & not by common landscapers & construction workers. We shall tell them that Chainsaws are dangerous & would require licensing for use in western countries. We shall tell them Tree Climbing is the only way to carry out proper pruning for many trees but not lifting platform alone. We shall also ask them whether China would prefer to stay in the Third World forever when it comes to Tree Work.

ISA HK/China has now made the attendance of ISA International Conference at least once to be a mandatory requirement to become an Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA) (http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/2008/08/isa-hkchina-independent-practicing.html) in our territory. This is meant to push the IPA candidate to meet the world & learn by comparison while networking with advanced Arborists in other countries. ISA conferences are known to be highly educational & condensed with latest research as seen again & again in previous reports.

IPM will be in two days for us. ISA HK/China is all geared up to train our Chinese brothers & sisters with our IPA, CA & CTW. Armed with apparently more advanced knowledge & experience, what shall we face?

We shall be telling you in two day's time.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."

Monday, November 24, 2008

ISA HK/China --- Absence of SM and DSM in HK for IPM 2008





Dear Station Members,

Please kindly note that the Station Manager & the Deputy Station Managers will be absent from HK from Dec 1 - 3, 2008. They, together with +10 Station Members, will be attending the IPM Show in China to promote ISA & modern arboriculture to the Chinese public for the first time during this period. For any dealing concerning ISA HK/China, please try to contact them outside this time.

Please also note e-mail blackout may happen for those of us in China although we would try our best to be connected. The mobile phone of the Station Manger of +852-9090-6719 will be forwarded to China while being there. This may be the best way to contact him during the IPM Show.

A seminar on ISA & International Tree Quality has been scheduled in the afternoon of Dec 1 at IPM, & a Tree Climbing Demonstration will be given in the afternoon of Dec 2. Both have been widely publicised in national newspapers in China by IPM & our entry into China has aroused resonance in the China greenery with internal discussion everywhere.

ISA HK/China has been given a display booth in IPM where we can use the wall as a screen for projecting power point & pictures. Exciting tree climbing videos will be broadcast to attract the Chinese visitors in this manner. We shall also display climbing gears, chainsaws & rope knots. IPM has provided us a 20 meter long display area exclusively right at the Entrance Hall & we have designed 20 no. of 1 m x 1.5 m posters in Chinese to describe ISA, Tree Standards, Pruning, Tree Inspection, Tree Climbing & Chainsaw Operation in this prominent area. This will open the eyes of our brothers & sisters with 'oohs' & 'aahs'.

IPM organizers has told us that they would expect no less than 50,000 visitors from all over China to come to visit the IPM Show this year, although IPM is meant to be more of a plant show rather than Arbor Show which does not exist in China so far. Let's hope by presenting ourselves in IPM for the first time in China that we can punch a hole in entering this Land of Old Dragons for ISA Arboriculture.

Wish us luck & let us bring back good news.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

Friday, November 21, 2008

ISA HK/China --- Job Position for Arboricultural Adviser

Dear Station Members,

Below is an Job Advertisement posted by a Govt Dept of the HKSAR today for a position which may be of interest to our Station Members. Please review & apply if any of you can meet the requirements.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager


Leisure and Cultural Services Department Non-Civil Service Contract Vacancy
(When dollars are quoted in this web page, they are Hong Kong dollars. About HK$7.8 = US$1.)

Arboricultural Adviser

Salary: HK$50,000 per month

Entry Requirements:

Applicants should have:

(1) a bachelor's degree in Botany / Biology / Forestry / Horticulture / Arboriculture or a related field from a Hong Kong university, or equivalent;

(2) a Certified Arborist qualification of the International Society of Arboriculture or National Certificate in Horticulture (Arboriculture) or equivalent;

(3) no less than three years of post-qualification experience in tree management work; and

(4) proven experience in providing tree management advisory service.

Duties: Advise the Department on and assist the Department in its tree management work; staff deployment for tree management; staff training for tree management work; management of tree database; and public participation in and public education on tree management.

Terms of Appointment: Successful candidates will be appointed on non-civil service contract terms for 2 years.

Fringe Benefits: A gratuity may be granted to the appointee upon satisfactory completion of the contract with a consistently high standard of performance and conduct. Such gratuity payable will be the sum which, when added to the Department's contribution to an MPF scheme in respect of the appointee as required by the MPF Schemes Ordinance, will be equal to 15% of the total basic salary drawn during the contract period. Rest days, statutory holidays (or substituted holidays), annual leave, maternity leave, sickness allowance, where appropriate, will be granted in line with the provisions of the Employment Ordinance.

Enquiry Address: Appointments and Establishment Unit Leisure Services Branch 7/F, Leisure and Cultural Services Headquarters 1 Pai Tau Street, Sha Tin, N.T., Hong Kong Enquiry Telephone: 2697 4932

Closing Date for Application: 28/11/2008

Newspaper(s) Advertised and Date(s): Career Times: 21/11/2008 Ming Pao: 21/11/2008

How to Apply:

(1) Application Forms (G.F. 340 (Rev. 3/2008)) are obtainable from any Public Enquiry Service Centres of District Offices, Home Affairs Department or any Job Centres of the Employment Services Division, Labour Department. The said form can also be downloaded from the Civil Service Bureau's web site (http://www.csb.gov.hk ).

(2) Completed application forms should reach the enquiry address on or before the closing date. Please specify the post you apply for on the envelope. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

General Notes for Non-Civil Service Posts :

(1) Non-civil service vacancies are not posts on the civil service establishment. Candidates appointed are not on civil service terms of appointment and conditions of service. Candidates appointed are not civil servants and will not be eligible for posting, promotion or transfer to any posts in the Civil Service.
(2) Candidates appointed must be permanent residents of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region unless specified otherwise.
(3) The entry pay, terms of appointment and conditions of service to be offered are subject to the provisions prevailing at the time the offer of appointment is made.
(4) It is Government policy to place people with a disability in appropriate jobs wherever possible. If a disabled candidate meets the entry requirements, he/she will be invited to attend the selection interview/written examination without being subject to any further shortlisting criteria.
(5) Holders of academic qualifications other than those obtained from Hong Kong institutions/Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority may also apply but their qualifications will be subject to assessments on equivalence with the required entry qualifications.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

ISA HK/China --- Incoming Mail (World Champions to train HK)

*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear xxx,

Thank you for your e-mail enquiry which was followed by a phone call to make sure we were addressed. We wish to repeat our reply to you in an open Station Mail without disclosing your identity, since we thought your enquiry is of a nature interesting to our +700 Station Members & public. We thank your understanding on this.

It is indeed true that ISA HK/China has the ability & connection to invite world class champion climbers to conduct tree climbing training in our territory. We are part of the global ISA network which can be verified with ISA HQ (isa@isa-arbor.com) anytime.

The reason why we have not done so is obvious. We do not think our Station is ready to be taught by world champions for basic tree climbing while most of our Station Members would have difficulties in getting up 10 feet off the ground. It would be like inviting a Nobel Prize Winner to come to teach Kindergarten in our territory. Would that be justified?

HK appears to go for brands & credential collection is popular among our public. On the other hand, ISA HK/China would have great doubt in the belief that by inviting world champions to teach our beginners on the Certified Tree Worker (CTW) program would enhance the chance of getting this credential, if the students would not practise hard on their own to prepare for the exam.

HK would need to learn the basics first, if our Tree Work is to be performed satisfactorily. Tree Climbing is a start, & then Chainsaw Operation & Rigging in the field to follow. TCHK (http://hk.myblog.yahoo.com/treeclimbinghk) can offer this kind of training but it appears that most of the enquiries would focus on getting the CTW credential alone. The CTW exam does not test for Chainsaw Operation & Rigging in the practical part. One has to master them outside the CTW credential.

Our Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA) system is meant to produce Arborists who can perform quality Tree Work in field operation under self-practice, besides other abilities. This system follows that of the Medical Practitioner & Practicing Lawyers since Arborists are Tree Doctors & Tree Detectives. You have to gain your Certified Arborist & CTW with other knowledge & experience in order to become an IPA. We wish you to head in this direction if you want to enter into self-practice eventually.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."


----- Original Message -----
From: xxx
To: egc@netvigator.com
Sent: Wednesday, November 19, 2008 8:14 PM

Dear Sammy,

Recently, i know that LCSD employ world champions come to HK do some tree work. Can ISA HK/CHINA invite theme to train us ???

reagrds,

xxx

為了不斷提升Yahoo! Mail,雅虎香港誠邀你參與意見調查

Sunday, November 16, 2008

ISA HK/China --- Crown Thinning for Mature Trees











*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

The Station Manager was called out to perform some Tree Pruning Work for about 40 no. of mature trees in an upper-class housing estate in the past few weeks. This housing estate is particular in that about half of the residents were against Tree Pruning & the other half were for. Therefore an Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA, http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/2008/08/isa-hkchina-independent-practicing.html ) was required to provide a third party opinion on anything to be done for this sentimental property. Curses & praises were equally loud during the operation.

A proper Tree Inspection with an Arborist Report was first carried out to ascertain condition & defects among the mature trees before any work was to be done. Crown Thinning under the supervision of the IPA was prescribed as the treatment after detailed diagnosis. Two pruning contractors were called in to perform the work while the IPA was required on site every minute to attend the progress, climbing up the trees with chainsaws if necessary for clarification & demonstration, to ensure no unnecessary cut was to be made for these old ailing trees.

Crown Thinning is something unusual in HK projects because most clients would just want tree parts removed for convenience rather than for future development of a tree. Selected photos of this particular job (due to protection of privacy) are attached for general reference as compared to common pruning job as seen in HK.

This particular client was also attentive to the Station Manager's advice to withhold the pruning to until lower temperature when the mature trees would be dormant. Dormant season is the best time for pruning mature trees due to inactive growth & lower chance of pest attack. However in our territory, pruning is mostly carried out during active growing season to trim back tree parts which would pose inconvenience or danger. Many trees are trimmed unnecessarily to restrain growth in this manner in the name of 'controlled pruning' by untrained personnel like common gardeners & construction workers. Is that one reason why we do not get the North American trees as shown in Station Mail just a little while ago?

Tree Pruning is very different from Tree Felling which would focus primarily on safety & efficiency. A simple comparison would be 'to kill an animal with surgery' against 'healing an animal with surgery'. Anyone can fell a tree with whatever tools & skills as long as the work poses no danger to themselves or public. But can everyone prune a tree to assist future development with good structure & health against wind & pests??








Tree Pruning is sometimes regarded as properly done in our territory if a cut is performed from Branch Bark Ridge to Branch Collar alone, without much attention on why, where, how & how much to cut, & without much consideration on whether the tree would react by diverting interior reserves to develop responsive growth to compensate for the removal. Crown Raising is usually confused with Crown Thinning. Topping is regarded as proper Crown Reduction. Live examples can be seen in many of our public places where the tip of the tree is hardly touched, but only the lower parts taken off like a naked dancer.

There is also popular belief that Tree Pruning can be performed with Lifting Platform alone & Tree Climbing is an unnecessary chore. Therefore we rarely see the inside of the canopy is thinned out in our trees, but rather just the outside perimeter accessible by crane from bottom up. Hardly anyone would study the Tree Biology & Tree Biomechanics before any pruning job in our territory at present.

One of the best Tree Pruning Practitioner in the world from ISA called Tim Bushnell will be visiting HK during the HK Flower Show next March to deliver a seminar on proper Tree Pruning. ISA HK/China will try to arrange some seats for our Station Members for his seminar or demonstration or to organize our own Informal Dinner to welcome this excellent mentor. More details will be released in Station Mail later.

Maybe by listening to international exerts & compare with our own, we can make some sense out of how the advanced world would prune their trees, & discover why our trees would actually deteriorate faster after our pruning, not usually before.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."








Wednesday, November 12, 2008

ISA HK/China --- IPM accommodation


Dear ISA HK/China & TCHK Station Members,

Information on the conference details of 2008 IPM China in Chinese was received yesterday & is now attached for our Station Member viewing.

As accommodation for this conference will be very tight at the conference hotels, those who are coming with us must give us their names & number for booking latest by 9am of Thursday Nov 14, 2008. Late comers will have to make their own arrangement for accommodation themselves at the IPM in Foshan City.

Looking forward to hearing from you in due course.

rgds,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

Sunday, November 2, 2008

ISA HK/China --- North American Trees











*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Our Deputy Station Manager Mr. KM Li was invited by ISA HQ to attend the Liaison Meeting & Leadership Workshop at Champagne, Illinois, USA last month & he has brought back valuable information from ISA HQ to further develop ourselves in our territory of HK, Macau, Taiwan & China. ISA HK/China is perhaps the fastest growing ISA Affiliation around the world with +700 Station Members at present & we are prepared to penetrate into China this December to further expand ourselves in their +900 cities & hundreds of thousands of towns.

Besides bringing back valuable education from ISA HQ, KM has also taken many photos of the local trees in North America for us to enjoy & compare with our own. All of these photos are hereby compressed for e-mail transmission to save disk space. They are truly magnificent trees living up to the expectation of ISA Arboriculture in every angle.

Upon seeing these beautiful trees, our Station Members may ask themselves why our territory is not getting such trees in our public places. Or is HK too small to plant trees at the correct spacing, or is it because these American trees do not ' flower ' or 'scent ' to make us happy? Or are these American trees planted too few so that they do not re-construct a forest for our 'preservation' purpose? Or do these American trees do not match our China 'quality' ? Or do they not plant dense shrubs & groundcovers directly under to give colour & body? We are simply not sure what comment would be received on these 'foreign' trees for their ' wrong-doing ', or would we prefer trees of this quality in our city?

ISA HK/China will enter China very soon & we will promote ISA Arboriculture there with these ' American trees '. We do have similar quality of such trees in ETF to offer to the Chinese if they ask. We are not sure how acceptable trees of this quality will be in China, or would our brothers & sisters have a different view on them with reasons of their own? However, facts have spoken that these ' ISA ' trees are required & planted in many western nations at present.

Trees are permanent structures in a city like lamp posts & utilities. They are usually planted there for years for public enjoyment. If not selected & planted right, they may simply turn into Time Bombs.

Then how should we go about to choose them?

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

ISA HK/China --- Tree Felling by a 'Specialist Contractor'

*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

The Station Manager was called out by a housing estate to supervise Tree Pruning for their Mature Trees this week. While he was there, he saw a spectacular Tree Felling exercise by a local 'Specialist Contractor' who performed their work completely different from our usual international practices which is worth sharing with our Station Members.

In order to protect privacy of the parties involved, no details with regard to location, individuals or even tree species are given here. ISA HK/China has only academic interest in the event & would provide facts on the technical side only.

The tree to be felled was about 25m tall & it appeared either dead or dying. The 'Specialist Contractor' has hired a RB crane to do the cutting & lifting without Tree Climbing. The ' Tree Worker' doing it was said to be felling tree nearly every week & was notified to be well versed for the job. He began by putting himself inside a steel cage which was then hoisted up to 2/3 the tree length where he would begin the cutting. The only PPE he was wearing was the safety helmet, & he was without Fall Arrest Hardness of any kind. He brought in a nylon sling with him & tied that at the point of cutting which was also about 2/3 of the height of the tree. After securing the sling to the tree, he began cutting the trunk with a Hack Saw, not Chainsaw, from both directions.

After some heavy duty of removing trapped saw & strenuous severing in by hand, the tree suddenly snapped clean without any warning. As the trunk broke away from the tree, being tied together with the steel cage on the same anchor point above on the crane, the removed stem naturally swung & hit the cage with a bang, causing shock & swing to the cage. The worker inside could not stand still & slipped, but luckily he was not thrown out of the cage. After some commotion & settlement of the cage & removed trunk, the crane lowered the tree part & the steel cage together to the ground. The removed trunk was then cut into sections by ground staff for storage.

The same action repeated 3 times for the 25m tree to be cut to the ground. It must have been a thrill of a lifetime for the worker inside the cage & the audience were watching it with equal excitement. When the management staff asked the Station Manger for comments on safety of the work, the Station Manger just smiled & said they have employed a 'Specialist Contractor' who should know what they were doing.

HK relies on 'Specialist Contractor' to do our Tree Work & the 'Specialist Contractor' may nowadays require a Certified Arborist (CA) to sign for tendering, but not sure how often on site for actual supervision. Yet again by passing just 200 multiple choice questions to become a CA in our territory without actually demonstrating climbing & rigging, can this CA really supervise actual Tree Work? If anyone has any objection to the installation of the Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA) status in our territory, they should come with the Station Manager on site some time to find out how Tree Work is done locally. The Arborist Profession all around the world is known to be a Practitioner Trade with hands on skills & knowledge. Credential collection alone may not shine the actual value of this unique profession.

TCHK (http://hk.myblog.yahoo.com/treeclimbinghk) has been kindly invited to perform a Tree Rigging & Felling exercise by Fung Kai School from 9am to Noon on Saturday Nov 1, 2008 for one of their hazardous trees. The photo of the 13m tall Alstonia to be felled is given in the attachment. Proper equipment & procedures in accordance with international practice will be demonstrated by TCHK Chiefs who will carry out the work. Fung Kai School has very kindly given us the permission to invite our Station Members to attend the event as an educational session for proper Tree Work. Anyone who is interested to attend may come by foot only, not by car, since all parking spaces will be used up for Work Zone & debris storage.

Let's hope who do not believe in proper Tree Work should be carried out by trained personnel only can come & see it with their own eyes for comparison on Nov 1. If not, ISA HK/China will be giving the same education to our brothers & sister up north very soon in China. We certainly do not wish to see if they can do it under ISA practice in future, whereas we here can not.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."

Thursday, October 23, 2008

ISA HK/China --- CSGF Progress Visit and East Week Magazine report











*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Two counts of recent events are hereby reported in Station Mail as follows:

1. China Southern Green Fair (CSGF) Progress Visit on Oct 19, 2008

Two Station Members, Deputy Station Manager Tony Ng & the Station Manager were invited by the CSGF Organizing Committee to pay a progress visit in Zhongshan on Oct 19 to discuss the display, seminar & demonstration arrangement. Details of the proposed itinerary are attached for general reference, although hardly anyone would know for sure what the final arrangement would be, not until minutes before the Show is due to begin on Dec 26, 2008.

It appeared that only one seminar can be arranged at the CSGF although we do not know how long the duration would be. On the other hand, ISA HK/China will be meeting with various local landscape institutes of China & exchanges will happen.

There will be a Tree Rigging & Chainsaw Operation demonstration given for ISA HK/China at the Show & the photo of the dead tree to get the cut is attached. Photos of Mature Trees installed on site with millions of RMB at the CSGF venue are also attached for interesting viewing. ISA HK/China will not make comments on these trees since we are greeted in as VIP by the enthusiastic host at the CSGF.

2. East Week Magazine article on ISA HK/China

East Week Magazine has kindly come for an interview with ISA HK/China & TCHK last month, & a report has been published in this week's publication which can be bought over the news stand. The contents are self-explanatory, although the readers have to understand that any given information has been digested & filtered by the editors.

Please excuse the unclear printing of the article since they were compressed under a low resolution for e-mail transmission. Anyone who wants to read clear pages may have to buy off the magazine in a shop anywhere in HK.

East Week Magazine would usually have a circulation of +100,000 copies per week in Southern China & is usually displayed in public location like restaurants & hairdressers for coffee discussion.

We wish to thank East Week Magazine for taking interest in our activity & ISA HK/China loves publicity to promote ISA Arboriculture in our territory anytime.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."

Monday, October 20, 2008

ISA HK/China --- HK Tree News (Tree Work Accident at Blue Pool Road, HK)


*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/ , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Attached is yet another sad piece of news of a Tree Work Accident which happened to a TCHK Member who is well known to the Station Manager for some time already, although he is not yet qualified by ISA or any international organization. The identity of this young man is protected because we believe he will somehow climb again in future, although he has truly learned a lesson the hard way this time.

Since it happened to a close associate of the Station Manager in TCHK in this unfortunate accident, the Station Manager actually spent half day without pay yesterday to investigate the cause of the accident together with the Labour Dept Inspectors who was there in a duty call. This accident was also widely reported in the press & in the internet news in HK.

After studying the tree, the equipment & the reported technique, it appeared to the Station Manager that it was a case of misjudgement by the Tree Climber on setting the Final Tie-in Point & the Lanyard Position during the Rigging Process to cause the collapse of the system which dragged the Tree Climber down from 15m height above to land on a pile of wooden debris. No equipment failure was detected by any party & no Safety Violation of ANSI Z133.1 (2006) was observed by the Station Manager. However, the technique of using a Figure-8 Friction Device on top of the tree to be controlled by the Tree Climber, instead of under by the Groundmen, is not an international practice nor recommended by ISA HK/China. This may be a technique self-invented by the Tree Climber at the time, who perhaps became over-confident with his own skills & experience, although this particular Tree Climber is known to have climbed for as little as only 2.5 years in all. Then when the system failed, he fell with it as well.

Tree Work is very dangerous indeed !! If an Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA), or even an experienced Certified Tree Worker (CTW) was present to supervise the work instead of letting some young climbers to go free with their zeal, this Tree Work Accident may be unlikely to have happened. This young man who was said to have punctured his lung & fractured some bones although luckily surviving the ordeal, may leave a shadow in the back of his mind to stay with him in his future climbing career. We also do not know how his injury would impair his ability to climb any faster or higher upon recovery. The next few weeks will be critical for him to tell.

There is a famous James Bond movie called "You Only Live Twice" who depicted this romantic agent to 'die' & then come back to life to accomplish his mission impossible. For Tree Climbers, we could only wish this can also be true, instead of "You Only Fail Once" ...

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."



Thursday, October 16, 2008

ISA HK/China --- Samples of International Quality Trees in HK






*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/ , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

As you all know, ETF is the only Tree Farm in China that can grow trees to internatinal requirements of Central Leader, Live Crown Ratio, Strong Branch Attachment, Spiral Limb Arrangement, Taper, 10 x Trunk Dia. Rootball without Girdling Roots. This kind of quality does not just 'happen' with any tree but only after meticulous tree production method of Structural Pruning, Plant Health Care & other practices. These relevant skills have not yet been brought into China & China tree farmers are still producing trees like vegetables & paddies in especially Guangdong Province which is the main tree supplier to HK. Yet HK has been very tolerant of this practice to allow trees of China quality to plant all over our city. LCSD appears to be the only Govt Dept so far to demand international quality trees in their purchasing requirement for urban planting.

Under a training scheme on Nursery Stocks Standards & Structural Pruning with a Govt Dept which took place in Eurasian Garden in HK this March, samples of ETF trees were shipped down there for practical demonstration together with China quality trees to act as comparison. After the training session, these ETF trees were allowed to grow in Eurasian Garden in Sheung Shui for future educational purposes. Since TCHK (http://hk.myblog.yahoo.com/treeclimbinghk) has now shifted all its Arbor Training from Fung Kai School to Eurasian Garden every Sunday, the Station Manager has decided to open up Eurasian Garden for anyone wanting to check out on ISA quality trees with prior appointment. Sunday would be the best day since TCHK will be providing other Arbor Training like Tree Climbing & Chainsaw Operation there. Therefore, why not come down to see both rather than one?

Anyone wishing to take advantage of this opportunity is welcomed to contact the Station Manager for arrangement by e-mail or 9090 6719.

Looking forward to upgrade the quality of trees in our territory to benefit our living with living examples rather than just rhetoric words.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

ISA HK/China --- 2008 research in Branch Attachment Strength


Dear Station Members,

Attached is the latest research from ISA on Branch Attachment Strength (BAS) for anyone interested in the subject.

BAS is important in Tree Inspection & Risk Assessment in our territory since the two fatal Tree Failure cases in Ngau Tau Kok of 2006 & Stanley in 2008 both appeared to involve branch failure at attachment point rather than the common Root Crown Failure (RCF) which would topple the whole tree instantly. On the other hand, it appeared to be more common to have RCF in our territory since concrete paving is usually given to cover root zone of our city trees for public convenience. However, fatality case due to RCF has not been detected by this Station so far in our reports, although property damages appeared to be the sole outcome of this failure.

The research attached has re-iterated the common knowledge of Strong Branch Attachment would appear in a branch union where the diameter of the branch is less than half the diameter of the stem at the connection point. Nearly all Certified Arborists (CA) would have studied this for their exam, although some examples of deviation were also given to provide another insight for this conventional concept. The research also mentioned the BAS on other types of branch connection such as Included Bark & the results appeared to confirm the traditional findings.

The mathematics given in this research may be way beyond the exam domains of CA, & may the CA credential taken to be an entry into Professional Arboriculture rather than an end to learning. Our territory now has the Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA) credential which is the target after becoming a CA & every intention is to install the IPA as respected as any other professional status especially for entering China. Only by continuously upgrading & updating the knowledge of our profession that it will be accepted & respected in our territory. The Station Manger was only in Court last week for a Tree Dispute law case & he can very well say that IPA is one hail of skills to face the Cross Examination of the articulate Queen's Counsels on the opposite side.

Back to the attached research, the Station Manger apologizes again for the funny underlining in the attached pages since he was reading the article while travelling on a bus to ETF. Please ignore the underlining if anyone does not see any significance in it.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manger

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."


Thursday, October 2, 2008

ISA HK/China --- China Tree News (ISA in 2008 IPM)


*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/ , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Further to our initial efforts to promote ISA in China in the past few months, China has responded favourably in return, & this time on a national scale. The name of ISA is now officially recorded into the Chinese Greenery System for the first time & can be approached by millions of Tree Lovers in China through their own system.

Attached is a newspaper cutting of the China Gardening News (CGN) which is a national newspaper on greenery in China. CGN is the equivalent of Wall Street Journal for greenery in China & is an official "Party Newspaper" circulated to all Landscape Bureaus from Central Govt to Provincial, City & Town levels for their millions of greenery staff to read two times a week. CGN is also read by the public who have interest in greenery in China & this figure would be again astronomical. CGN is the most influential newspaper in China without doubt on greenery & finding a place there today for publicity is like finding water in desert. ISA HK/China somehow did it through IPM participation for free.

The direct translation of the heading in the report would be that "IPM Show has paved the way for ISA to enter China". It may not be what some of our international readers would like to acknowledge but China does not know ISA well enough to throw an open arm to invite us. The social sentiment in China towards anything foreign is still full of scepticism due to a hundred years of invasion history, & this will be the ice that ISA HK/China will work hard to break. We believe that ISA will be good for China, & we want our brothers & sisters to apprehend that.

The author of the article also made comparison in 'judging' a tree with the oriental & western angle. It then went on to the intention of ISA HK/China wanting to spread the knowledge of modern arboriculture into China for the benefit of trees there. Description such as Arborists are Tree Doctors & Tree Detectives were mentioned. The article ended by claiming how popular the IPM Show would be to bring about the hundreds of participants from across the countries.

With some calculated efforts, ISA is now officially registered in the China Greenery System in their database. This may raise some eyebrows in this Land of Old Dragons for them to pay attention to an 84 year old Tree Care Organization of the Western World which has constant research & education on Arboriculture & Urban Forestry, not as a hobby but as a municipal necessity. A lot of such information is also given for free for the benefits of mankind & a better living in the world. If this may all sound too good to be true for our brothers & sisters who think everything has to come with a price tag, it will then become our mission to confirm it to them, one tree at a time.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."

Monday, September 29, 2008

ISA HK/China --- 2008 CSGF in China



*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/ , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

China is within the territory of ISA HK/China & all the time, we have been waiting for the right opportunity to promote ISA Arboriculture into there with relentless effort. Now with the joining of KM Li & Tony Ng as Deputy Station Manager, the Station Manager finally has additional energy to spare for exploring this vast & open country. China may remain as the final frontier for ISA Arboriculture with its vast territory, huge population & countless billions of trees. ISA could be seen with a chip of the puzzle missing if China does not join in, & ISA HK/China will take up this mission with our name bearing on it.

After signing for the biggest Flower Show called IPM in China for this December, ISA HK/China has yet again signed up for the 2008 China Southern Green Fair (CSGF) which may be a little smaller in scale, but will be a Trade Show of the Chinese Greenery Industry. CSGF is run in a similar fashion to TCI Expo in North America with trade people coming along as the majority. Information of the CSGF in Chinese is attached for reference.

ISA HK/China has managed to persuade both IPM & CSGF to put in education sessions & Tree Climbing Demonstration for us to promote ISA Arboriculture in their Show. This may be also the first time that in such kind of important Flower Show in China, the organizer has agreed for an international research & education organization to put up seminars for public education. In the past, this kind of Show would not mix in the conference element, since they were organized for buying & selling only, not public education. Therefore, when the Station Manager proposed to provide free seminar & demonstration to the Chinese organizer before signing, they did raise their eyebrows as to why we wanted to offer that.

ISA HK/China has explained in detail the ISA organization & mission to the Chinese organizers in order to get a place at these popular events. China has a very different landscaping system to HK in that they have Landscape Engineers only in their Landscape Bureau to master their greenery, similar to Nparks in Singapore in a way. Landscaping is viewed by the Chinese as part of engineering & their Landscape Engineers would need to look after trees from cradle to grave from design, installation, maintenance, regular inspection, risk assessment to final removal. ISA Arboriculture appears to fit in well with the Chinese mentality in that both are looking for research & development, & sustainability of tree care. We have appeared to talk in the same scientific language on trees with similar concerns on practicality & functions.

In our discussion with the Chinese experts so far, they have great appreciation in our Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA) system in that an IPA can write, climb, rig, operate chainsaws with international vision & connection. IPA is something that the Chinese Landscaping System does not currently have in equivalent at present. They have also appeared to favour our Certified Tree Worker (CTW) credential with respect to Tree Work to be regarded as not the same as construction work, & must be performed by specialists trained in the field for supervision & execution. Municipal Tree Work in China is performed by greenery workers of their own Landscape Bureau, supervised by their own Tree Experts, & not by common construction companies.

In a shorter term, ISA HK/China can see a great future for the CTW credential to develop in China, since CTW exam can be conducted in Chinese. CTW carries the basics in Tree Work knowledge & practice, like cabling & bracing, safety requirement, pruning & rigging. With the billions of trees in China in their 900 cities & their lack of ability in understanding English, CTW may fit in well with their current landscaping system. On the other hand, CA exam in our territory is conducted in English only since CA is required to connect to the world & need to advance themselves with international knowledge in CEU. CEU is currently conducted in English only in our territory.To translate the knowledge into English is also beyond the ability of ISA HK/China at present & then what about all the latest research that comes out in ISA nearly every month? It would therefore defeat logic to have our local CA not able to master adequate English, nevermind the IPA which the Chinese have appreciated so much.

We anticipate our promotion of ISA to spark off like firework in IPM & CSGF later on in December. Our Tree Climbers will also get their chance to flash off their feathers in front of an astonishing Chinese audience, who would not believe Tree Climbing could be carried out by ropes & harnesses for Structural Pruning & Rigging in a tree. Tree Climbing & IPA appear be the advantages for ISA HK/China to enter China & may we take maximum benefit out of them.

ISA HK/China really has the vision to develop China from now on, rather than to stay forever in tiny HK. May anyone willing to join us stand by our side, & we shall march in together to make history for their trees in this Land of Old Dragons.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."


Monday, September 22, 2008

ISA HK/China --- 2008 Green Thumbs Tree Climbing Competition results





Dear Station Members,

It is the utmost pleasure of ISA HK/China to announce to you that our Tree Climbers have achieved excellent results at the 2008 Green Thumbs Tree Climbing Championship in Singapore on 13.9.2008 as follows:

1. Champion Chainsaw Operator --- Tony Ng, Deputy Station Manager of ISA HK/China

2. Champion Work Safety & Health (WSH) Practitioner --- Tony Ng, Deputy Station Manager of ISA HK/China

3. Champion Chainsaw Operator Second Place --- Mr. SY Ho in the name of ISA HK/China from Fung Kai Tree Climbing

4. Master Challenge Second Place --- Mr. KW Lee in the name of ISA HK/China from Fung Kai Climbing

5. Men's Speed Climb First Place --- Mr. KW Lee in the name of ISA HK/China from Fung Kai Climbing

6. Men's Head to Head Foot Lock First Place --- Mr. KW Lee in the name of ISA HK/China from Fung Kai Climbing

7. Men's Head to Head Foot Lock Second Place --- Mr. SY Ho in the name of ISA HK/China from Fung Kai Tree Climbing

8. Women's Head to Head Foot Lock First Place --- Miss LS Chau in the name of ISA HK/China from Fung Kai Tree Climbing

All in all, our Tree Climbers have collected 8 Awards at the 2008 Green Thumbs Tree Climbing Championship for ISA HK/China & HK. This is the best results that HK Tree Climbers have ever scored in any International Tree Climbing Championship.

Besides where they would come from originally in our territory, all above climbers are members of TCHK (http://hk.myblog.yahoo.com/treeclimbinghk) which is the training arm of ISA HK/China for practical skills in arboriculture including Tree Climbing, Chainsaw Operation, Aerial Rescue & Rigging. TCHK runs regular classes in Fung Kai School or Eurasian Garden nearly every Sunday for public entries.

It is our congratulation to the contestants who have worked so hard to bring honour to ISA HK/China & our territory. We also wish to thank Fung Kai School for providing the venue & facilities without which, there can be no Tree Climbing Champions of ours of today in Brisbane & Singapore. Modern Tree Climbing of ISA HK/China really started at Fung Kai School 2 years ago by the Station Manager to their students & the name of Fung Kai School will be down in history of modern arboriculture in China when ISA HK/China spreads into there later on in December.

Tree Climbing is on the rise in HK now & we have proven to the world that Chinese Climbers can compete internationally if we can be given facilities & proper training. It will be good if the HK Govt can consider to provide additional training ground in their parks or housing estates for us to develop proper Tree Climbing to the public, like Singapore is doing so in their city parks. With which, HK can certainly bring about further honours to our society & to arouse more interest to preserve & protect our trees by positively touching them.

Who would love a tree more than a Tree Climber who touches it?

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

Friday, September 19, 2008

ISA HK/China --- HK Tree News (Contracting out Tree Inspection and Public Commnet on Tree Work)


*** Our weekly Station Mail is for the information of Station Members only, but Station Mail has given up copyright & can be freely circulated. For administrative reasons, comments from outsiders are usually not entertained & may be circulated within our system locally & overseas. Please note Station Mail is sometimes given in Blog at http://isahkchina.blogspot.com/ , although images are usually not attached due to size. ***

Dear Station Members,

Below & attached are two sets of recent news concerning our local trees in the media:

(A) Contracting out Tree Inspection Work

The media has been asking for opinions among landscape professionals on contracting out Tree Inspection & Risk Assessment in HK. Some are in favour & some have reservation which is all natural in a free speech society.

The essence of the discussion really rests with the reliability & sustainability of contracting out the work, & how the work is going to be carried out & by whom. The HK Govt has by tradition employed many consultants in the engineering & planning field, & ISA HK/China has every confidence that our Govt has the ability to issue the right direction & requirement for contracting out Tree Work, if it ever becomes necessary.

There should also be a grading system as to which level of Tree Inspection is to be carried out by what level of expertise. For example, if the public untrained in arboriculture is to be invited to carry out elementary Tree Inspection work, then what should the see & report? The next level may be the Certified Arborist (CA) who are tested by 200 multiple choice questions only to become Certified. Then should they be asked to inspect trees which would require Tree Climbing for canopy defects? Should we decide on a size of a tree to be inspected for CA & beyond for a higher level like the Independent Practicing Arborist (IPA) who has a better experience & reliability?

For a detailed Risk Assessment on a mature tree, the Tree Assessor would need to be familiar with subjects like Tree Biology, Tree Biomechanics, & Tree Work like Structural Pruning, Cabling & Bracing, Decay Detection Methods, etc. Tree Climbing is frequently necessary to inspect structural faults in canopy & the Tree Assessor must have keen observation & experience in the body language of a mature tree. ISA HK/China would recommend training in advanced Tree Biology of Dr. Alex Shigo & Biomechanics by Prof Mattheck as a basic start in carrying out this kind of work, & it appears that all these are way beyond the testing requirement in the current CA exam.

It is therefore apparent that different level of expertise would be necessary to do different level of work, & every level should really take part to form a complete service to help our trees. Trees nowadays are public properties & they are regarded as permanent structures in our city, like lamp posts & traffic lights. Public participation would also encourage our public to protect trees & public resentment would be quelled once they have learned that trees are living creatures just like human beings. Trees do need care. ISA HK/China encourages public involvement in Tree Care & sees this is a way to better protect & preserve our valuable trees.

(B) Public Comment on Tree Work

This message is given in the attachment in Chinese from a local newspaper. ISA HK/China is only interested in the technical part for the discussion & not anything else.

ISA HK/China agrees with the Expert's opinion which is underlined in the message that to understand tree health, the inspector has to touch trees rather than photos alone. Tree Climbing may be necessary at times if canopy problem is suspected, e.g. decay & cracks. Tree Pruning has always been a complicated subject under intensive study at ISA all around the world. Pruning to a tree is like surgery to a human. Once any tree part is removed, it can not be nailed or glued back, & the tree will develop responsive growth to try to recover the lost part.

Another important consideration in proper pruning is the Wind Loading on a tree after pruning & in future growth. It appeared in our territory that a lot of trees failed its parts after pruning, not after installation. If the pruning creates large wound which can not be successfully compartmentalized by a tree lacking vigour, the decay would develop inside to spread to the root crown & topple the tree in wind. In the opinion of ISA HK/China, what trees have suffered most in our territory is from bad pruning, yet proper pruning would require the knowledge of Tree Biology & Wind Mechanics which are beyond the knowledge of common landscape workers. Pruning is much more than cutting at the right angle from Brach Bark Ridge to Branch Collar, but on why, where & how much to remove with what.

Tree Work is specialist skills known around the western world. Even in Britain among the many British Tree Experts discussed with the Station Manager in ISA meetings & communication, Tree Work over there is usually handled by their Arboricultural Officers who are trained & experienced Arborists. If HK is to carry proper tree care, this may be the general direction we suppose. We respect that our LCSD has the most number & experienced Arborists & best equipment in our Govt to carry out Tree Care. It would be good if LCSD may wish to help out on that.

best regards,

Sammy Au
Station Manager

"Trees are good for the community. Trees need care like human beings. Arborists are the Tree Care Professionals."



市場足承接外判樹木管理


9月10日 星期三 05:10

【明報專訊】康文署正研究是否需要把樹木護理工作外判,有園境師和樹藝師皆表示,本港有足夠承建商和樹藝師接收約72萬棵樹木,包括逾500棵古樹的檢查和護理工作;但有樹木專家表示,全面外判可能導致質素參差,建議康文署保留護理古樹的權力。


港有逾10間綠化承建商


園境師學會前會長、香港顧問園境師協會主席劉興達表示,本港有10多間綠化承建商從事綠化工作,包括園景設計及規劃、樹木檢查及護理等,部分一直為康文署工作,若政府開放保育樹木工作,相信有足夠能力承接。他又指出,政府可透過制訂保育樹木政策,監管園境師和承建商分區管理約72萬棵樹木,「當局可按區招標,聘請顧問公司評估區內所有樹木的重要性、存在風險及護理方法等,撰寫報告和落實護理計劃」。


國際樹木學會中國地區分會會長歐永森指出,本港約有110名註冊樹藝師,「樹藝師只通過筆試,與具實戰經驗、攀樹師牌照等的獨立執業樹藝師(IPA)不同,IPA 能為檢查報告負上法律責任,亦不偏幫政府或保育組織,能獨立工作」。本港現有5至6個執業樹藝師,有能力檢查全港樹木。


環團憂外判商參差


身兼樹藝師的長春社保育經理蘇國賢指出,他認為外判商的質素參差,而且會隨重新招標而不斷更替,不宜負責保育古樹工作。「始終古樹一死就沒有,康文署不能只看外判商的報告就當完成管理工作。」他認為古樹的管理應由康文署負責,至於其他樹木,則可透過加強監管外判。