NJ Tree Foundation’s Renaissance Trees Program Celebrates 10 Years

May 23, 2016Newark, New Jersey – This spring, the NJ Tree Foundation’s Renaissance Trees Program is hitting a milestone: ten years of planting trees in Newark. The Program began in 2006 to reforest New Jersey’s brick city. The NJ Tree Foundation celebrated the ten year anniversary of the Newark Renaissance Trees Program, and Newark’s 350th anniversary, by planting 16 trees and 350 edible plants at the Garden of Hope on Saturday May 21st.

may21planting-41“We have great partners that helped us celebrate our 10 year anniversary,” explains Elena López, Program Director for the NJ Tree Foundation. “Prudential brought about 20 employee volunteers and donated 350 edible plants. Newark SAS and other partners will take care of the trees long term.”

The NJ Tree Foundation’s Renaissance Trees Program has planted more than 2,400 trees in Newark to date and removed more than 20,300 square feet of concrete to plant those trees. Saturday’s planting included removing 176 square feet of concrete. Removing concrete and planting trees improves watershed health and reduces the stormwater burden on Newark’s combined sewer system. It is estimated that the new tree pits alone will allow 8,250 gallons of stormwater to filter naturally on an annual basis rather than become polluted runoff.

“Trees are a great solution to many urban environmental problems,” López notes, “They reduce stormwater runoff, clean the air, shade homes to reduce cooling bills, and bring beauty to neighborhoods. Two of the trees planted at the Garden of Hope are fruit trees, which have the added benefit of creating new, local sources for fresh and affordable produce.”

 Newark residents and visitors are now able to enjoy the 16 new trees planted to celebrate the Renaissance Trees Program’s 10 year anniversary, and very soon the community gardeners at the Garden of Hope will harvest the bounty of the 350 edible plants that went in the ground. The shade and fruit trees are expected to live for decades, benefiting people today and future generations as part of the Newark 350 Gives legacy.

Newark TreeKeepers Workshops

Join the NJ Tree Foundation this June for our Newark TreeKeepers Workshops!  These classroom sessions are a series of 3 workshops and hands-on trainings that will teach you how to maintain and enhance the health of your community’s trees.

IMG_2763SPACE IS LIMITED: while FREE to Newark residents, you must RSVP to participate. Please register for each session you will attend. Attend all three sessions to become a Certified Newark Treekeeper!

To RSVP or for more information, please contact our Newark Director, Elena López:(609) 439 -1755  or elopez@njtreefoundation.org.

All sessions will be held at the Weequahic Park Fieldhouse: 92 Carmichael Dr, Newark NJ

Tuesday June 7      6:00- 8:00 PM
Session 1: Basic Tree Biology and Tree Identification

Tuesday June 14   6:00-8:00 PM
 Session 2: Tree Planting, Pruning and Maintenance

Tuesday June 21    6:00-8:00 PM
Session 3: Trees and Your Watershed

Newark residents attend at no charge. Non-Newark residents pay $20/session. All attendees receive free tools, educational materials, and dinner at each workshop. 2 CEUs are earned per session, which can be applied toward your state approved Community Forestry Management Plan requirements.

These workshops are made possible thanks to the Watershed Institute in Pennington NJ.

 

ArborJet will Treat 40 Ash trees in our 9/11 Grove of Remembrance!

Date: May 19, 2016 at 10:30AM in our Grove of Remembrance, Liberty State Park, Jersey City, NJ

More than 40 ash trees overlooking the Statue of Liberty will receive environmentally sound, trunk injection treatments against the highly destructive and invasive Emerald Ash Borer, currently threatening the New Jersey’s ash trees. Media, residents and local arborists are invited to attend and watch a demonstration of the treatment process, learn more about the options available to both homeowners and municipalities which can save their ash trees, and observe the beauty and value these trees bring to the city, its parks, and neighborhoods.

Arborjet has donated these treatments with Almstead Tree & Shrub Care Company providing the labor at no cost to protect 41 stately ash trees in our Grove of Remembrance, New Jersey’s Living Memorial to the state’s victims of the September 11th attacks.

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NJ Tree Foundation hosts 60-fruit tree giveaway in Camden

May 11, 2016, Camden, NJfruit tree 1The rain on Saturday May 7th did not stop 22 community and backyard gardeners from picking up 60 fruit trees from the NJ Tree Foundation. Pear, apple, plum, and apricot trees were disbursed to be planted throughout Camden as part of a grant the NJ Tree Foundation received from the Campbell Soup Foundation.

“Camden residents have limited options to obtain affordable, fresh produce within city limits. This project is creating new food access points for residents while empowering them to grow their own food,” said Jessica Franzini, Senior Program Director for the NJ Tree Foundation. Franzini led the giveaway on Saturday. She taught gardeners about fruit tree planting and care and provided tools, mulch, and educational materials to each garden so they could properly care for their trees. Franzini noted, “I will keep in touch with the gardeners over the summer and we will have a Harvest Party in the fall to share lessons from the season. Some gardeners have never grown fruit before. We want them to have a positive experience.”

The event was held at the Vietnamese Community Garden in East Camden, which received six fruit trees. Lan Dinh of VietLead, who works in the garden, explained, “This is an intergenerational and multiracial garden of Vietnamese elders and youth of various backgrounds and ethnicities. Our new fruit trees, which include Asian pears, apples, and apricots, will offer diversity to our garden and help feed the families who rely on this garden for fresh food.”

fruit tree 3Most gardens received one to three fruit trees. The Yorkship School obtained the most, with 15 teachers taking 10 fruit trees for their school garden. The teachers planted the trees in the afternoon after picking them up in the morning with help from Pacesetters of South Jersey. Students will care for the trees and enjoy the fruit. The Yorkship School is registered with Sustainable Jersey for Schools and two of their teachers completed free NJ Tree Foundation tree care workshops to become Certified TreeKeepers.

Pastor Odessa Edmond, of the Whitman Park neighborhood, picked up two fruit trees. “Our church waited two years for our fruit trees. The families at our church will benefit from this harvest for years to come,” the Pastor explained.

In total, 22 community and backyard gardens benefited from the project in neighborhoods such as East Camden, Cramer Hill, North Camden, Lanning Square, Morgan Village, Whitman Park, and Cooper Grant. All fruit trees were gone by early afternoon but that did not stop more Camden residents from coming to see how they could get a fruit tree.

Franzini mentioned, “The NJ Tree Foundation had a waiting list for fruit trees before this event and now we have another one. We hope to hold an event like this next spring, as it was such a success.”

All tree species provided are semi-dwarfing, self-pollinating trees from HopeWell Nursery in Bridgeton. The NJ Tree Foundation and nursery staff worked together to pick species that will survive well in urban environments. The NJ Tree Foundation thanks the Campbell Soup Foundation for their support which made this event possible.

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#NewarkGives: Thank you for your contributions!

May 4, 2016 – Newark, New Jersey –newark yay On Tuesday May 3rd, the Newark community and beyond united to celebrate Newark’s 350th anniversary by donating to the city they love. Newark Celebration 350 hosted the online giving event which raised funds for four legacy projects. The NJ Tree Foundation’s legacy project is planting 350 trees in Newark!

Thank you to everyone who contributed to our legacy project. #NewarkGives had so much interest that it broke the internet! The giving server crashed and donations could not be accepted for several hours. If you tried but were unable to donate to the legacy gift of planting 350 trees in Newark, please donate directly to the NJ Tree Foundation. Write “Newark350Gives” in the box that asks “Where do you want your donation to go?” Your contribution will help us leave a legacy of 350 new trees in Newark, trees that will be enjoyed by generations to come!

#NewarkGives: Help the NJ Tree Foundation plant 350 trees!

social-image-1x1May 3, 2016 – Newark, NJ – The Newark 350 Gives giving day is here! The NJ Tree Foundation and Newark community unite today, Tuesday May 3rd, for a special 24-hour online giving campaign in celebration of Newark’s 350th anniversary. Your donation will help us plant 350 trees in Newark! Any donation large or small will help.

Today, Newark 350 Gives hopes to raise $350,000 in only 24 hours to fund five Legacy Gifts, projects of historical, community, arts and educational significance, that will live beyond this historic milestone year and instill civic pride and connection for generations to come! The NJ Tree Foundation’s legacy gift is planting 350 trees in Newark. Imagine: 50 or more years from now, someone will enjoy a tree that YOU helped plant by making a donation. That is quite a legacy!

Please donate and spread the word to other tree-lovers in your life. Together, we can make a $350,000 impact!

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NJ Tree Foundation Celebrates Arbor Day 2016

April 29, 2016 – New Jersey – 10325366_10152488848273273_4809332432604534827_nOn Friday, April 29th, the NJ Tree Foundation and tree lovers across New Jersey and the country  are celebrating Arbor Day! Arbor Day celebrates trees by encouraging tree planting and tree care. What are you doing to celebrate Arbor Day? Our recommendations are:

1) Plant a tree. Make sure you follow the right tree, right place, right way mantra!

2) Care for a tree. Pull weeds surrounding the tree and lay fresh mulch around the tree, leaving a 2 inch gap around the base of the tree.

3) Donate to Newark 350 Gives! The NJ Tree Foundation will plant 350 trees with funding from Newark 35o Gives. If you can’t plant a tree yourself this Arbor Day, donate to help one be planted in the future. Learn more about Newark 350 Gives by visiting their website.

 

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The NJ Tree Foundation will join the New Jersey Forest Service and others to celebrate Arbor Day at Veterans Memorial Park in Parsippany, NJ. A ceremony will be held to commemorate the 67th New Jersey State Arbor Day Celebration.

NJ Tree Foundation Named Beneficiary of Newark 350 Gives!

April 22, 2016 – Newark, New Jersey – Mark your calendars to donate to Newark 350 Gives on Tuesday May 3rd – your donation will help to plant 350 trees in Newark to celebrate Newark’s 350th anniversary!

boylan street newarkThe NJ Tree Foundation is honored to be a beneficiary of Newark 350 Gives, which is seeking to raise $350,000 for nonprofits accomplishing amazing work in Newark.  Newark 350 Gives is part of Newark Celebration 350, a year-long jubilee of events and festivities commemorating the 350th anniversary of Newark’s founding. The NJ Tree Foundation will use money raised through Newark 350 Gives to plant 350 trees in Newark over four seasons, beginning fall 2016. Leave a legacy in Newark by contributing to planting trees! Your donation will benefit generations of Newark residents and visitors as the trees thrive for years to come.

Newark 350 Gives launches its giving on Tuesday, May 3rd, but you can give now too!

NJ Tree Foundation Plants 6,000th Tree in Camden, Beautifies Circuit Trail

April 18, 2016Camden, New Jersey – The NJ Tree Foundation’s Urban Airshed Reforestation Program just hit a milestone in Camden this spring: planting its 6,000th tree. The nonprofit organization began planting trees with help from Camden residents in 2002. The NJ Tree Foundation were joined by Camden Mayor Dana Redd and local partners to celebrate the planting of 6,000th tree on Saturday April 16th. Mayor Redd presented the NJ Tree Foundation with a Proclamation honoring the milestone.

“We are thrilled to plant our 6,000th tree in Camden,” explains Jessica Franzini, NJ Tree Foundation Program Director. “We have seen Camden streets transform as we planted trees. The neighbors come together to plant, they take care of the trees together, and then enjoy the beauty that is brought to their house by the trees.”

Saturday’s event planted 30 large trees (each over 10 feet tall) along N. 36th Street to compliment the regional Circuit Trails. The planting was organized by the NJ Tree Foundation in partnership with the students and staff at Urban Promise Academy. Camden residents and community organizations will adopt and care for the cherry blossoms, black gums, and tree lilacs. Volunteers dug holes and planted trees from 9am-12pm. There was also a pop-up bike clinic taking place during the event with Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, promoting use of the Circuit Trails.

The NJ Tree Foundation has funding from the William Penn Foundation to beautify the Circuit Trails with hundreds of trees and shrubs over the course of two years. The Circuit is a network of bicycle and pedestrian trails connecting people to jobs, communities, and parks in the Greater Philadelphia Region. When completed, the Circuit will have approximately 750 miles of trail, with 50% of the region’s population living within one mile of the trail network. 300 miles of trail are open for use today, several of which run through Camden, providing a connection to the waterfront and beyond.

As of Saturday, more than 6,000 trees have been planted in Camden since 2002, but the NJ Tree Foundation says there is still more to be done. “Camden’s tree canopy remains lower than what is recommended for a healthy city. Trees remove pollutants from the air and groundwater, so tree canopy coverage helps improve the health of local residents,” Franzini added, “We estimate it will take thousands more trees to reach Camden’s tree canopy goal of 25%, but we know we are making a difference with every tree we plant. The residents certainly agree.”

 Check out photos of the event, taken by The Darling Light Photography.

IMG_7669Jessica of the NJTF with Mayor Redd and Councilman Fuentes, Camden

NJ Tree Foundation and volunteers to plant trees this Spring!

April 8, 2016New Jersey – This spring, the NJ Tree Foundation will plant over 200 trees in urban communities with help from city residents and community volunteers.

Trees are an important part of a city’s infrastructure. They assist with stormwater management and improve air and water quality. They also offer a number of social benefits. Trees provide shade for people to sit outside on the sidewalk in front of their homes, add beauty and nature to cities, increase property values, and some tree species provide fresh fruit. The NJ Tree Foundation has seen trees unite neighbors as its community-based tree planting events are initiated by local residents who also care for the trees after they are planted.

“Any resident of Camden or Newark can apply to us to receive a free street tree,” Franzini explains, “We plant in other cities of need, such as Gloucester City and Jersey City, as our funding allows. Anyone that doesn’t mind getting dirty can help us by volunteering to plant trees. We plant rain or shine. It is always a lot of fun.”

During spring 2016, the NJ Tree Foundation will host six community-based planting events in Camden, five in Newark, and one in Bayonne. The media is invited to attend all events. While many volunteers are still needed, some events are full and cannot accept additional volunteer groups. Please check our volunteer pages for more information and RSVP in advance to Jessica Franzini for Camden events, jfranzini@njtreefoundation.org or (856) 287-4488 and to Elena López, elopez@njtreefoundation.org or (609) 439-1755 for Newark/Bayonne events.

11265123_10153499822273273_437537869514375131_nEvents are held rain or shine. Come dressed for the weather in clothes suitable for getting dirty and wear closed-toe shoes. The NJ Tree Foundation will provide all tools needed for planting. A meeting location and directions will be provided upon RSVP. See you on the street!

td volunteers with ponchos