Applications for our Plant-A-Tree Program are now available for Spring 2013! Any Resident in South Boston with a yard can apply for a FREE tree (of their choosing) to plant this spring. This is a great opportunity to get more trees planted in the neighborhood while increasing the property value of YOUR home (win-win!) Please tell your friends and family about this amazing opportunity! Applications are due by April 13th…
Click here for Plant-A-Tree Applications.
The long awaited West Broadway Tree Survey report is finally here! Southie Trees has worked with the Youth Ambassadors for the past couple of months to collect information in the field, input data into the iTree computer software, and compile all the information into an easy to read report. The findings were astounding with a total of 106 trees giving the West Broadway community $14,320 in annual benefits. The trees on West Broadway only account for about 5% of the total street trees in South Boston, so if you think $14,320 is impressive, think about the total benefits that all of the street trees in South Boston provide.
A surprising 91.5% of the total number of trees on West Broadway were in fair or good condition, leaving only 8.5% in poor condition, dying or dead. This is great news for our community especially considering the tough conditions these trees endure everyday including impacts of climate change (warmer winters, summer drought conditions, more extreme storm systems, etc…), poor soil conditions and soil compaction, and the use of treesas doggie bathrooms, bike racks and car door stoppers.
Last Friday the 3rd grade class at South Boston Catholic finally were able to plant 2 Eastern Redbuds on school grounds. Our original plan was to plant the trees on Monday, October 29th, but as we all know, nature had other plans. When Sandy hit we knew that the planting date would have to be moved to the rain date. Unfortunately the rain date was Tuesday, also a no go. So when Friday morning rolled around, 60 degrees and sunny, it seemed like a miracle.
Ten enthusiastic Moms came out to help dig the initial holes before the students came outside to plant the trees. It was hard work breaking through old roots and huge rocks but with the steady guidance of Mr. Sullivan, the custodian, we were able to make quick work of it. When the students came out at 9:30am the holes were dug and they were excited to get to work. Highlights of the morning included finding worms, playing in the dirt, and competing over who could be the loudest when the trees were finally planted. Both classes were tremendously well behaved and engaged in the planting and the day went off without a hitch.
Thank you to all of the parents, teachers, and students that made this day possible. Reaching the city’s goal of 100,000 trees planted by 2020 can be possible!
This past week has been extremely busy here at Southie Trees, mainly because Fall is the perfect time to plant new trees. The crisp sunny afternoons and cool rainy nights we have had throughout October are the ideal conditions for a high tree survival rate. The events of last week included 2 activity days with the Labouré Center’s Youth Tutoring Youth Program and a replacement tree planting on Dorchester Heights with Excel High School.
The students, grades 3-5, and the Labouré could not have been more excited about the tree activity and bulb planting we planned for them. First we read The Giving Tree, then students were asked to write what trees give to them on construction paper leaves to hang on the wall. After we got them thinking about benefits of green space in the urban environment we went outside to plant daffodil bulbs to brighten up the school. The kids had a blast and finding all the creepy crawly worms was definitely a highlight of the day.
The replacement tree planting on Dorchester Heights was also a great success. Members of the Green Team and BuildOn worked together seamlessly to remove the dead tree and plant the new one. The students were pros at digging and the tree was planted at no time at all!
With the arrival of Hurricane Sandy, it is unknown how the trees will fare. The high wind speeds and heavy rainfall have already caused 16 tree emergencies in the Boston area, and the storm is still building. We are hoping the trees, both new and old, all over Boston will be able to weather the storm.
On Friday, September 7th Southie Trees partnered with the Department of Conservation and Recreation, Reverb, MIX 104.1, and Jason Mraz to conduct a deep root fertilization of the stressed trees on Castle Island. 30 enthusiastic volunteers of all ages came from all over the Boston area to ensure that the trees on the south side of Castle Island would survive the winter (and maybe they came out to see Jason Mraz too )
The event kicked off with a quick demo from myself and Todd Caswell, an arborist with Natural Tree and Lawn Care who was kind enough to donate his time. Sean McQuade from DCR was also nearby to field any questions. The volunteers, Jason Mraz, Reverb employees, and MIX 104.1 DJs jumped in and got their hands dirty (really dirty, the all organic fertilizer we used was SMELLY.) Volunteers first had to drive tent spikes or soil tubes into the ground with mallets, no easy feat. Once all the holes were made fertilizer was poured in and the whole area was watered.
In all,we were able to deep root feed 23 trees along the causeway. Good thing too because the stresses of being in an urban environment (like compaction, restricted root space, and competition for resources) paired with the stresses of being located on the coast (like heavier storms and salt damage) were really dragging these trees down.
For more information and pictures from the event check out the article in the Globe here and the slide show from MIX 104.1 here. And as always if you have any questions, comments, or concerns about trees in Southie please don’t hesitate to email us at email@example.com
Southie Trees has posted up at the South Boston Farmer’s Market for 3 weeks now and the response from residents has been fantastic! 14 residents have already signed on to water the street trees in front of their buildings from Joyce Hayes Way to Farragut Road! It is so great to meet all the South Boston residents that support our efforts in creating a more beautiful, sustainable, and healthy community. Thank you everyone!
If you want to learn more about the Street Tree Watering Program or how you can help trees in Southie, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
On Wednesday July 25th, Southie Trees and the Youth Ambassadors program started a survey of the trees on West Broadway with the help of Bartlett Trees Experts Arborist, Greg Carbone. Greg graciously donated his time to teach us how to correctly identify the tree species along West Broadway (most of which are Green Ash and Honey Locust), how to measure the diameter of the trees, and how to gauge the health and condition of the trees. With Greg’s educational tree tutorial, The Youth Ambassadors and Southie Trees are now fully equipped to conduct a successful tree survey on West Broadway.
The purpose of the survey, which will take place over the next five weeks, is to calculate the tangible benefits that trees provide to the community. The field data will be entered into the ITrees software which will then create a cost-benefits analysis which highlights the positive effects of trees on energy costs, carbon dioxide emissions, stormwater treatment, and air quality.
Southie Trees is very excited to be working with the Youth Ambassadors on this project and we hope to bring the results to the community sometime in October. As always, if you have any questions or comments on the tree survey or anything else dealing with trees in South Boston do not hesitate to contact Southie Trees at Southietrees@techboston.com
And if you see us surveying and watering along West Broadway don’t hesitate to say hello and have a chat about trees!
I just wanted to take the opportunity to introduce myself as the new Sustainability Coordinator here at Southie Trees, taking over for Lindsay Amico. My name is Bethany Lawlor, I’m an Environmental Studies and International Affairs major at Northeastern University and I love everything outdoors. I know I have big shoes to fill, as Lindsay did an amazing job of taking Southie Trees to new heights, but I am willing to take on the challenge (hopefully with the help of all of you!)
I have some very exciting events and programs in the works for the next 6 months including a clean-up project at Castle Island, a planting in Andrew Square, and a tree survey along West Broadway to highlight the benefits (or lack there of when the trees are not 100%) of street trees in South Boston. Stay tuned for specific times and dates. We would love your help and support!
As always if you have any questions, comments, concerns, or ideas about trees in South Boston don’t hesitate to contact me at Southie Trees (Southietrees@techboston.com or email@example.com). I will do my best to help and/or point you in the right direction!
I cannot wait to get started in beautifying South Boston, and look forward to meeting each and every one of you Southie Tree-ers!
Sustainability and Marketing Coordinator
Hi Southie Tree-ers,
This is Lindsay, the sustainability coordinator for Southie Trees. My last day is Tuesday, June 19th and I just wanted to give my own personal update on the changes that Southie Trees has gone through since I started my co-op here in January. I came into this position not really knowing what to expect. Being a Northeastern student I had never really hung out in South Boston before besides the St. Patricks Day Parade. Not to mention coming into the position in January I wasn’t about to go frolicing around outside in the frigid cold. To top it off I had to fill the shoes of the great Jenn Brundage, who to me appeared to be some kind of intelligent biology-focused tree goddess. No pressure or anything.
But I am happy to say that after a few months I had adjusted completely to my role in running Southie Trees. Jenn did a fantastic job filling me in on the details of what she accomplished with Southie Trees. Donna Brown from SBNDC gave me the complete tour of South Boston from Castle Island to the artist lofts in Fortpoint to West Broadway. Phoebe Flemming introduced me to the Youth Ambassadors and her garden crew. Bill Gleason from the West Broadway Neighborhood Association helped me to identify good locations for Grow Boston Greener as well as street tree locations for the parks department. And all the while my boss Susan Labandibar, along with the entire Tech Networks of Boston staff, continued to encourage me to continue to put myself out there and to be free to make the occasional mistake along the way.
As a result I can’t even begin to describe the number of accomplishments Southie Trees has had in the past six months. We received four Grow Boston Greener grants for South Boston and planted 14 trees, including working with the National Park Service. We also participated in West Broadway’s Neighborhood Association tree planting on Foundry Street. I’ve given Southie Trees presentations at several neighborhood groups including St. Vincents, Andrew Square, Dorchester Heights, Citypoint, and West Broadway. I was also able to read the Lorax and do tree crafts with children at the Laboure Center and the Ollie.
We’ve working on planting in and cleaning up the street trees on West Broadway with a youth worker from ABCD, the Youth Ambassadors, and SBNDC. We’ve forged relationships with nonprofits like Medicine Wheel and the Boston Natural Areas Network, and worked with city employees from the parks department. Not to mention we’ve had incredibly successful events like our March tree rescue at the South Boston Public library. So many people from the community came out to support Southie Trees and we had the capacity to work on about 30 trees.
For the future I have nothing but optimism for South Boston. The next co-op, Bethany Lawlor, will be starting on July 5th. She’s also an environmental studies major at Northeastern and just got back from working and taking classes in Australia. She’ll be conducting a tree health survey on West Broadway which will first of all, produce a report that indicates how important trees are to our community, and second of all will provide stipends for South Boston high schoolers. She’ll be following up with our Old Colony work to ensure that the old elm trees are preserved during the construction. And she’ll be continuing to utilize our New England Grassroots Grant to make an impact on the South Boston community.
I’d like like to say thank you to everyone I’ve met in South Boston. I’ve been truly touched by how amazing this community is. I can’t believe how incredibly dedicated these neighborhood groups, neighbors, and nonprofits are to making sure this is a great place to live. It really reminds me of the environmental justice sector in Buffalo, everyone is so closely connected and committed to common goals. I’ll still be around in September finishing up my time at Northeastern so I’m sure I’ll be around visiting in South Boston still. Thank you all for giving me this fantastic opportunity to make a small impact on a beautiful community. And you can still reach Southie Trees and Bethany at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Southie Trees is planting two plum trees at Fosters Community Garden. The Garden is located behind the South Boston Action Center on West Broadway. It’s located on Athens Street which runs parallel to West Broadway. We’ll be meeting at 3pm to plant the trees. Supplies and gloves will be available. Contact us with any questions.