Reported by Michael DeMarco, Planner for the City of Watertown and ISA Certified Arborist
October 20, 2018 marked the City of Watertown’s 17th Annual Fall Tree Planting event co-sponsored by the City and Tree Watertown, the City’s street tree advisory board. This year’s event was held at Cosgrove–Sherman St. Park. Historically, this large green space has been used as a sanitary and stormwater sewer corridor, but it is technically categorized as a municipal park.
Through a $75,000 Urban Forestry Grant from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Prospect Park Alliance recently surveyed roughly 12,000 of the park’s 30,000 trees as part of its work in caring for the Park’s natural areas.
The survey not only provides a more nuanced picture of the park’s evolving ecosystem, but important insights into the economic, environmental and health benefits of Brooklyn’s Backyard. Conducted by Davey Resource Group (DRG), a well-respected urban forestry consultancy that has worked extensively in New York City, you can examine the results on the Prospect Park TreeKeeper Interactive Map.
“The survey has provided exciting insight into what we already knew were some of the park’s most important treasures, its trees,” said Prospect Park Alliance President Sue Donoghue. “We are all aware of how special this urban green space is, but now with this data we can quantify the economic benefit our community receives from these trees. It clearly reinforces just how precious this resource is, and how we must all do our part to care for it.”
Gloversville, New York, located in Fulton County halfway between Albany and Utica, was a recipient of a 2018 NYSUFC Arbor Day Grant. These grants are meant to kick-start community and urban forestry programs. Over the course of three events held in April, May, and June, 2018, the Gloversville Housing and Neighborhood Improvement Corporation (GHNIC) planted twelve trees in celebration of Arbor Day. Through these events, more than two dozen community members were involved, the public learned more about urban forestry through four stories in local newspapers, and community members expressed interest in forming an urban forestry committee.
Since originally applying for the $1000 grant, the City’s tree planting project underwent two significant shifts. The first was a shift in location. Though they had originally sought to plant trees along land-banked parcels, GHNIC folks later decided that planting trees in the “asphalt desert” that surrounds the Gloversville Farmers Market Pavilion in the heart of downtown was a better way to showcase the benefits of trees in a highly visible part of the city.
Freeville Village Planning Board and Tree Committee Member Tom Cavataio provided this report on Freeville’s first-ever Arbor Day planting with the help of a $1000 NYSUFC grant. Freeville (pop. ~ 520) is located in Tompkins County, east of Ithaca.
The newly formed Freeville Tree Committee held a successful Arbor Day tree planting event on May 12, 2018 with the planting of a swamp white oak (Quercus bicolor) at the Village of Freeville’s Groton Ave Park. The tree was donated to the program by Paul Paradine, a local NYSEG employee and new member of our tree committee.
A great deal of committee activity preceded the event, with signage being created, announcements in the local papers and at the local elementary school, and a last-minute decision on a one-hour delay the morning of the event (the forecast was for rain, but we were still able to carry off the event by delaying it for an hour).
With the help of a grant from the Council, the Town of North Collins (pop. approx 3600) in Erie County celebrated its first-ever Arbor Day on April 27. Kindergartners read tree tributes and helped plant two swamp white oaks (Quercus bicolor) in the Marion J. Fricano Town Park at the future Veterans Tribute site. North Collins Town Supervisor John Tobia spoke at the event about the origins of Arbor Day.
In addition to kindergartners and their teachers, the event was attended by Town Board Councilwoman Ellen Mathis, Town Clerk Lynn DiVencenzo, the Veterans Tribute Committee, and Town Forestry Committee Chair Wes Awald, whom Tobia thanked for his special effort getting this Arbor Day celebration organized.
On April 27, 2018 the Town of New Windsor Tree Committee, in conjunction with the Town of New Windsor, hosted its inaugural Arbor Day tree dedication ceremony. Executive Assistant to Town Supervisor George Green / Chief of Staff Colin Schmitt provided this report.
This event was made possible thanks to a generous grant from the New York State Urban Forestry Council, which was used to purchase five eastern redbud trees and related supplies.
Thanks to the publicity from the grant and event, we secured additional donations of trees which led to the planting of 13 new trees around the town hall complex—eastern redbud, Kwanzan cherry, and weeping cherry trees.
We used the Arbor Day event to dedicate trees to specific veteran and first responder organizations. The event included the dedication of the trees, with a ceremonial planting for each organization, and the reading of descriptions of the specific trees. Over 100 people attended from a wide array of organizations and backgrounds.
DEC Extends Application Period for Environmental Justice Community Impact Grants Deadline to Apply for Grants Extended to July 27, 2018
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos recently announced the extension of the application period for Environmental Justice Community Impact Grants. The deadline to submit applications has been extended to July 27, 2018. In April, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that $4.5 Million in Community Impact Grant funding is available to help communities facing environmental justice challenges address environmental concerns. The funding is provided by the State’s Environmental Protection Fund (EPF).
DEC Announces $525,000 in Grant Funding Available to Improve Water Quality Through Tree Planting Projects
DEC Announces $525,000 in Grant Funding Available to Improve Water Quality Through Tree Planting Projects Streamside Plantings Improve Wildlife Habitat, Protect Water Quality and Increase Resiliency New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced the first round of statewide competitive grants for the Trees for Tributaries Program, designed to support riparian tree planting projects for communities across the State. Approximately $525,000 in grant funding is available to help plant trees and shrubs along streams to improve wildlife habitat, water quality and storm resiliency.
Healthy urban forests protect the health of watersheds by slowing down stormwater runoff and sediment transport. Note that one category of the projects funding by these Hudson River Estuary grants is:
Using green infrastructure practices as a means to reduce combined sewer overflows.
Grants Will Improve Water Quality and Protect Natural Resources
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced that $350,000 in competitive grant funding is available to help communities in the Hudson River Estuary watershed increase resiliency to flooding, protect water quality, fish, and wildlife habitat, and enhance natural resources. The grants are provided through New York’s Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) and are administered by DEC’s Hudson River Estuary program.
Thank you to Town of Plattsburgh Planning Technician Malana Tamer for providing this report.
The Town of Plattsburgh (population app 12,000) is located in Clinton County in the northeastern part of New York State, approximately 65 miles south of Montreal, Canada and on the western shore of Lake Champlain. The Town of Plattsburgh surrounds the separate and more populous City of Plattsburgh.
With the help of a $400 Arbor Day grant through NYSUFC, the Town of Plattsburgh purchased two river birch trees, which were planted at the Cadyville Town Beach on Arbor Day, April 27, 2018. The Town beach provides public access to the Saranac River with a lifeguard patrolled beach and non-motorized boat access. In summer months, the beach provides river access to approximately 1,098 users per month. The two new trees will provide erosion control and shade for beach users.