NJ Recovery Fund – Environmental Projects

Who has a shovel-ready project and would like to partner with us? We are submitting a Letter of Intent to the NJ Community Foundation/Dodge Foundation – NJ Recovery Fund. It is DUE 2/25/2013. Guidelines are:

Priority #4: Environmental Protection and Restoration Projects
The protection and restoration of natural systems and environmental infrastructure is essential to the long-term health, prosperity and resiliency of New Jersey and its communities.

A portion of the New Jersey Recovery Fund will be directed to projects that showcase and demonstrate environmental protection and restoration as a resiliency strategy, including:
• Green infrastructure solutions to storm water management and neighborhood flooding;
• Restoration of critical wildlife habitat, stream banks, wetlands, riparian corridors, and natural areas;
• Improvements to public access to open space;
• Research, modeling and data collection to prioritize and inform projects.

Overall preferences: Priority will be given to projects in the Delaware Bayshore, Raritan Bay, Meadowlands, coastal region, Pinelands, Barnegat Bay, and urban centers.

If you have a project, please email me ASAP at: njtf1@juno.com

Reducing Invasives, Retaining Our Trees Workshop

This exciting Stewardship Workshop will be held at Duke Farms on February 20, 2013 from 12:30 – 4:00 pm.

The workshop covers best management practices of public trees and forests for control of invasive species (including deer) and for storm risks while preserving our important tree canopy.  The target audience is municipal and public works officials, foresters, arborists, engineers, planners, flood plain managers, landscape architects, environmental and shade tree commissions, and other interested people.   Continuing Education Units will be offered.

Register today! Reducing Invasives, Retaining Our Trees

Contact Sara Malone at sjmalone@ejb.rutgers.edu


Welcome, Elena!

Meet our newest employee, Elena López! Elena earned her Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies and Anthropology from Franklin and Marshall College. Throughout the entirety of her college and professional career, earth and environment have been her passion, both in and outside of the classroom. She is excited to bring her experiences and fresh perspectives to the Tree Foundation as the new Program Coordinator in Newark.  You can contact Elena at elopez@njtreefoundation.org.

Camden: Certified Sustainable

Congrats to the City of Camden and the Camden Green Team for their newly attained certified status under Sustainable Jersey! Through this program, municipalities complete action items and earn points toward their certification. The NJ Tree Foundation is proud to be a member of the Green Team and an active partner in making Camden a green, sustainable, more enjoyable city in which to live.

The Camden Green Team is comprised of city officials, non-profit organizations, and Camden residents. Pictured below, members of the Team and Mayor Dana Redd accept their award from Donna Drewes of Sustainable Jersey.

Welcome, Beth!

Tree folks – meet Beth Kwart! She is a new edition to the NJ Tree Foundation, and our first ever grant writer! With her knowledge, expertise, and exceptional writing skills, Beth will help raise funds for our community-based tree planting programs across the state. We are very excited to have her on board!

Prior to her work with the NJ Tree Foundation, Beth was a grant writer for the Center for Family Services in Camden. She is also an alumnus of the AmeriCorps VISTA program, a volunteer with the Surf Rider Foundation, and a graduate of the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey. Check her out here, inventorying trees in Camden today!

Featured Story: Lori Braunstein

Words cannot say enough about the amazing Lori Braunstein, Founder of Sustainable Cherry Hill, who is one of Camden’s very best friends. From helping the city obtain certified status with Sustainable Jersey to volunteering with the Heart of Camden and the Tree Foundation, rest assured Lori is always somewhere making a difference. Well, this season she truly blew us away…

Lori (bottom left) turned a year older in October. To celebrate, she partnered with the NJ Tree Foundation to deliver a high-impact community greening project in the Bergen Square neighborhood of Camden. Lori asked her loved ones to donate to the project in lieu of a gift and/or volunteer their time to assist with implementation. On October 6th, over 50 of Lori’s closest friends and family joined us with shovels in hand.

Ana Agueda (top right), only a few years older than Lori, has lived in Camden for most of her life. Organizing back-to-school events, block parties, and the planting of hundreds of trees over the past 10 years, Ana is known as a leader in her community. To bring more greenery to her neighborhood, Ana applied for trees in the fall of 2012. Her dream was to line the 1100 block of S. 3rd Street, the 300 block of Kaighns Avenue, and the 200 block of Mt. Vernon Street with trees while also transforming a vacant lot into a pocket park for kids. On October 6th, with Lori’s volunteers ready to work, we let the games begin.

Three hours, that’s all it took. We planted 21 large trees spanning four city blocks, then focused our efforts on the pocket park. Covering grafetti with new paint, we worked with local youth to paint positive images on the walls surrounding this new green space. We installed a decorative wooden fence, planted roses and mums, and enjoyed the delicious BBQ grilling of Santana, the lovely man across the street. There was more love on the 1100 block of S. 3rd Street that day than Ana can remember in a long time. “We are just so thankful to Lori and these outstanding volunteers for seeing that we needed help and coming here to do something about it. The kids have nowhere to play here. Now they have these beautiful streets and this park. And we’ve only begun…”

Lori Braunstein, you are an inspiration. The fruits of your labor and kindness will be felt in Ana’s community for years to come. You have redefined what it means to be a volunteer, a donor, a supporter, an environmentalist. We are so grateful to call you a friend to NJTF and Camden!

To see photos from this event, please visit the Tree Foundation’s album or Lori’s album.

Invasive Species Workshops in South Jersey

Join the South Jersey Land and Water Trust for two upcoming Invasive Species ID Workshops! Held on September 8th and September 29th, these sessions are taking place in Cherry Hill through a partnership with the Cherry Hill Environmental Commission. Learn how to identify invasive species like Chinese bushclover, Japanese angelica tree, and poison hemlock while reporting them to the NJ Invasive Species Strike Team. For more info, check out this flyer!

First Class of Certified Newark TreeKeepers!

In June, the NJ Tree Foundation hosted its first-ever Newark TreeKeepers workshops! TreeKeepers is an educational extension of our Newark Renaissance Trees Program (NRTP). This program is free and open to Newark residents only, who have or will be receiving a tree from our organization. Residents learn about long term maintenance practices including pruning, as well as tree biology, tree identification and hazardous tree recognition. The final workshop is an opportunity to put that knowledge gained into practice by learning how to conduct a tree inventory. Those who attend all four workshops, become Certified TreeKeepers. 

We are proud to recognize 13 residents as the first class of Certified Newark TreeKeepers! Thank you to all who participated, making this program a huge success! One attendee stated, ” The most valuable part of the workshop was gaining a clear understanding of proper pruning. I will now be looking at trees differently!”

Our 2012 Class of Certified TreeKeepers

Reginald Bledsoe
Mahima Giri
Donna Johnson
Mary McDaniel
Wayne McDougall
Leonard Mitchell
Charon Motayne
Mario Motayne
Joseph Nardone
Gregory Newell
Miriam Santiago
Sandra West
Joy White 
For more information about becoming a Newark TreeKeeper, click here



Camden TreeKeepers Dates Announced

Attention Camden residents! Join us this July for Camden TreeKeepers and learn how to care for your urban trees! Free to Camden residents, participants enjoy educational materials, a free gift and dinner at each session. Attend all four sessions to become a Certified Camden TreeKeeper, of which there are currently 150+ in the city of Camden. Space is limited, so please sign up in advance.

Session 1: Basic Tree Biology and Tree Identification
Wednesday, July 11th from 5:30-7pm
* Gift: Trees of NJ book

Session 2: Tree Planting, Pruning, and Maintenance Techniques
(This session has an outdoor component)
Wednesday, July 18th from 5:30-7pm
* Gift: hand pruners

Session 3: Recognizing Tree Hazards and Tree Disease
Wednesday, July 25th from 5:30-7pm
* Gift: tree watering bag

Session 4: Understanding Environmental Issues and Your Tree &
Community Organizing for Trees
Monday, July 30th from 5:30-7pm
* Gift: surprise!

>>> All sessions will be held at the Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority (1645 Ferry Avenue, Camden) in the first floor auditorium.

To sign up, please contact Jessica at 856-287-4488 or jfranzini.njtf@gmail.com with your name, address, phone number, and the workshop(s) you want to attend.

Spotlight on Audrey Snyder: Founder of Wood for Good

Audrey Snyder is not your average 17 year old girl! In 2011, she started her own non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds for local charities by splitting and selling firewood. Wood for Good operates in Tewksbury, NJ and donates proceeds from the sales of their firewood to 11 charities, including the Brady Life Camp, the Tewksbury Land Trust and the Tewksbury Rescue Squad. “Charity starts at home…Wood for Good was established because we wanted to give back to a community that has given us so much,” explains Audrey in the Wood for Good mission statement.

This month, Wood for Good will be selling trees and donating proceeds to local charities through Mission: Arbor Day. The NJ Tree Foundation is proud to be a partner in this effort, providing 200 trees of four varieties to be sold to local residents.

For more information, or to support Wood for Good, please visit their website.