Sunday, May 8, 2016

One good thing about the "urban heat island"* effect

The trees come into leaf sooner!

Away from the city (this shot) it's colder and the trees are still bare.

Let me see now: bare trees for longer vs heat island effect...

Gimme the bare trees!

PS….can you imagine how GOOD this street must look in summer? 

Falmouth, Massachusetts

* For those not familiar, the "urban heat island effect" refers to the higher temperatures of cities relative to the surrounding countryside. It's basically caused by all the concrete and asphalt. Shading roads with trees is probably the single most important thing you can do to combat it. 


  1. Hi Grayden,
    I've been interested in your posts from the US. It seems to me, from the pictures you have been posting, that they are far more "into" trees than we are in Australia. Would you concur, or have you just been posting pics which make it look like that?
    Rgds, Chris

  2. Ah, good question Chris. The short answer is "yes, they are". The longer answer is that it depends where you are. I'm on the eastern seaboard (New England) of the US and I'm staggered at the sheer numbers of trees they have in their streets and parks. And often closely spaced. The west coast not so much. But of course, like Australia, the west is hot and dry, the east is cool and wet (I'm generalising) so it's much EASIER to have lots of trees. I was talking to the City Arborist at Boston who said once they've planted a street tree they NEVER water it(!) So yes, I'm obviously picking photos of the good bits, but yes, overall I think the tree culture is stronger and they just seem to accept the negatives that go along with that - root damage to sidewalks, leaf mess in "fall" and so on. As I said in another post, it's ironic that the hottest, driest places have the biggest tree phobias! Los Angeles seems a case in point here. Perth is the example back home.