Davey, ISA Southern Chapter Partner to Preserve Shigo Collection

Posted: Feb. 26, 2017

Kent, Ohio – Historic arboricultural research will be preserved and made available to the public through a partnership between The Davey Tree Expert Company and the Southern Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture.

Davey and the Southern Chapter of the ISA have partnered to preserve and display a collection of research papers and laboratory samples from Dr. Alex Shigo, a plant pathologist and long-time scientist for the U.S. Forest Service who died in 2006. The U.S. Forest Service also will assist with promotion of the collection and potential additions to its contents.

The agreement between Davey and the Southern Chapter of the ISA provides for several ways in which the Shigo collection will be made available for study, including through a public, searchable website. The terms of the partnership include Davey’s commitment to store and preserve the collection, make it available for external display at conferences of the Southern Chapter of the ISA from 2017 through 2019, and provide financial support to the Southern Chapter Memorial Scholarship through 2019.

“For decades, Davey has been a proud partner of both the Southern Chapter of the ISA and the U.S. Forest Service,” said Greg Ina, vice president and general manager of research, recruiting and human resource development. “Our community of practice is strongest when public, private and professional-affiliate institutions work cooperatively. In curating and preserving the Shigo collection, Davey respectfully and proactively accepts its role in highlighting the great history and tradition of tree care.”

Shigo pioneered, through extensive research, the modern method of pruning tree limbs to direct the tree care industry away from flush cuts—a pruning practice harmful to trees. He also identified compartmentalization as the means in which trees heal around a wound or decay by recognizing the Compartmentalization of Decay in Trees, or CODIT, process. And Shigo became widely known for authoring numerous tree care reference books, many of which are available online today.

Using the materials, Davey will establish the Shigo Collection Learning Resource Center website, which will be dedicated to the collection and Dr. Shigo’s arboriculture legacy. All items from the collection will be scanned and photographed with accompanying narrative and made available on the site for public viewing and educational research. The website is expected to go live in the fall.

Physically, the collection will be displayed periodically at the Davey Institute to benefit the Davey Company’s more than 8,600 employees and frequent visitors. It also will be incorporated into the curriculum of the Davey Institute of Tree Sciences, Davey’s flagship training program in biological sciences, safety, tree and plant care and management techniques.

In addition to the website, the collection will be put on display at the Southern Chapter of the ISA annual conference in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, from Feb. 25 through Feb. 28. And Davey has committed to also taking the collection to two different meetings scheduled in 2017.

Dwayne Carter, executive director, Southern Chapter of the ISA, said the preservation and future public availability of the collection could not have been possible without the early efforts of Dr. Jim McGraw, who taught alongside Dr. Shigo and established the collection through personal donations from Dr. Shigo.

“The Southern Chapter of the ISA, Davey and the green industry all are indebted to Dr. McGraw for his early efforts to curate Dr. Shigo’s materials,” Carter said.

The Davey Tree Expert Company’s more than 8,600 employees provide tree care, grounds maintenance and environmental consulting services for the residential, utility, commercial and government markets throughout the U.S. and Canada. Davey has provided Proven Solutions for a Growing World since 1880 and has been employee-owned for 37 years. For more information, visit www.davey.com.

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