Sustaining Oaks in the Chicago Wilderness Region

A conference on the Chicago Wilderness Oak Recovery Plan

September 11, 2014

Oak trees once dominated the forests and savannas of the Chicago region. They were keystone species, the foundation of entire ecosystems. Now, oak species are in decline in the region, both in developed urban sites and in natural areas. Oaks that have been lost are not being replaced; oaks are not regenerating in ecosystems drastically changed by development and competition from more shade-tolerant species. When the grand old oaks that survive today reach the end of their lifespans, we may be left with far fewer oaks.

The partners in Chicago Wilderness are developing a plan to sustain oaks, both in urban sites and in natural areas. During the conference, the first draft of the Chicago Wilderness Oak Recovery Plan will be presented to gain feedback from a wide range of stakeholders who have an interest in the future of oaks: natural areas managers; municipal and commercial arborists; urban planners; landscape architects; private landowners; public land managers; and representatives of the nursery and landscape industries, government, and nonprofits.These stakeholders will discuss the importance of oaks in cities and suburbs as well as natural ecosystems; the challenges oaks face; mapping and projections for past, present and future oak populations; targets, strategies and tools for oak restoration; case studies; and opportunities for collaboration and action among Chicago Wilderness stakeholders to forge a future for oaks.

Notes:  Limit 100

Course number: 

Thursday September 11, 2014, 8:30 a.m.-5:15 p.m.
Thornhill Education Center
The Morton Arboretum
4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle, IL
(at Interstate Highway 88 and Illinois Route 53, just west of Interstate Highway 355)


Fees include entry to the Arboretum, coffee and lunch.


CALL: 630-719-2468
IN PERSON: Stop by the Visitor Center during open hours.