SMA Liaison Arthur Goodhind Massachusetts

Arthur Goodhind

State Coordinators: 

Julie Coop: Urban & Community Forester

Mollie Freilicher: Community Action Forester

Welcome to the Massachusetts State Liaison Webpage for the Society of Municipal Arborist! Our goal for this webpage is to provide users information regarding state trends in Urban and Municipal Forestry, provide notifications of educational opportunities, and share opportunities to network and engage with State Co-coordinators and other industry peers.  Thank you for visiting our site stay tuned for more updates.

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Leaf Spot/Tar Spot of Trees especially Norway Maple


Over the last few weeks I have fielded many phone calls and questions regarding leaf spot and tar spot.  Although a common pest issue, tar spot and leaf spot seems more aggressive this year than in the recent past in the MetroWest area of Boston.  The region has most certainly received adequate rainfall this year until just recently and has also observed some high dew points, especially impressive at night.  The weather the last few days from this posting has changed for the better.  The air throughout the region is much drier, yet soil moisture and rainfall has been low and sparse.  The most recent weather is great to slow down leaf spot, but very dry.  For very valuable historical weather data check out the link below for the Northeast Regional Climate Center hosted by Cornell University.  Thank you to the Cornell group for such important and useful data.


Gypsy Moth Update


In Natick MA Gyspy moth progression and damage has been limited.  Some new plantings of English Oak responded well to a bifenthrin application and fertilization and re-leafed impressively.  Traveling around the state I have not observed much catastrophic damage but I am sure there are exceptions.  Let’s hope the populations decline next year.  Be sure to check out the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation website for Forest Health updates.


 Overall Observations


From my perspective the summer of 2017 has been much easier than last summer.  The region has received adequate rainfall, temperatures have tracked close to normal, and no major weather events, although a storm is off the coast again near labor day as was one last year. Talk amongst colleagues has focused more on summer fun than tree stories. 


Tree City USA Award Ceremony

On June 7th in Arlington Massachusetts, the Department of Conservation and Recreation hosted the annual Tree City USA, Tree Line, and Tree Campus awards.  This year eighty-eight communities received awards, from one of the smallest Towns, New Salem, celebrating their first, to the Town of Wellesley celebrating over twenty-five years. Massachusetts has the highest participation rate in New England, however, DCR Commissioner Leo Roy has challenged the Commonwealth to reach a participation rate of 100 cities and towns for 2018.  If your city or town is not part of the Tree City program, please consider sending in the application.  Massachusetts General Law Chapter 87 (Public Shade Tree Act) qualifies as a Tree Ordinance and already fulfills one of the four requirements!  More information about Tree City USA can be found online at

Massachusetts Forest Health

It must be hard to be a tree.  In Massachusetts we have gone from one extreme to another in a very short time period (more than normal).  In addition to record drought last season to abundant rainfall this spring we have also recorded the lowest high temperatures as well as experienced for the first time TWO heat waves prior to June 30th.  At the Tree City USA award ceremony, Ken Gooch, DCR Forest Health Program Director provided an update on Forest Health, including the status of forest pests.  In summary, Ken Gooch reported that Asian Long-Horned Beetle trapping and scouting continues in Worcester County, however, beetle detection has decreased significantly.  The Emerald Ash Borer continues to be a pest where established and is expected to spread. Trapping and scouting for EAB continues.  Gypsy Moth continues to devastate Oaks and other vulnerable species, however, the pathogen Entomophaga maimaiga is active in some parts of the State and is attacking Gypsy Moth.  Also reported were drought stress concerns for Pinus strobus and Acer rubrum. For more information please visit:

Gypsy Moth and Memorial Day

On Memorial Day I attended a celebration in Shrewsbury Massachusetts along the shores of the beautiful Lake Quinsigamond. I share this story because it was my first experience of a Forest Pest negatively affecting the quality of life of individuals at such a high level.  Because a large White Oak overhung the back deck, the Gypsy Moth prevented any food from being outside and left the grill, deck, seats, and boat covered in excrement. Excrement even fell in my Sangria, twice.  The guests were also actively concerned with getting a rash from contact with the caterpillar. This was quite the experience and really brought Urban Forestry efforts to the forefront that day for the people at the celebration.  So often problems of others can seem distant, this one was as close to home as it gets. 

Links of Interest: 

Register Your Big Trees: 
Find Contacts, Chapter 87 Fact Sheets, Grant Opportunities and more:

Northeast Regional Climate Center, Cornell University

Biography: I was born and raised in Shutesbury Massachusetts and hold a AS from the Stockbridge School of Agriculture, a BS from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, and an MBA from Bentley University.  I am a Massachusetts Certified Arborist and have the pleasure to serve on the Executive Board of the Massachusetts Tree Wardens and Forester’s Association, Treasurer of the New England Sports Turf Managers Association, and now the Massachusetts State Liaison for the Society of Municipal Arborist.  Currently I hold the position of Tree Warden for the Town of Natick Massachusetts, Department of Public Works.