Eight new trees grow in Fairhill

Volunteers gathered for this Saturday's tree planting

Over the last few years, we’ve been working together with volunteers and the Philadelphia Horticultural Society (PHS) to bring new life to our streets through trees. Our work tree planting is part of the city-wide Tree Tenders program, and we’re proud to be a part of this movement to keep Philadelphia green.

Tree Planting at the Sheppard School

This month, we helped plant eight new trees at the Sheppard School, a K – 4 elementary school one mile east of our site.

Marisol Rodriguez, the school’s principal, came with her family and eight families from the school. They were helped by Tom Grabe and Peter Warrington from our Tree Tenders program, five neighbors, and our Interim Executive Director, Jean Warrington.

How Tree Tenders Works

The Tree Tenders program is an incredible partnership between people who want to see more green in our city. Each tree recipient — an institution, a property owner, or a tenant — needs to commit to watering the tree for two years. In exchange, the city cuts the hole in the sidewalk, PHS provides the tree, and Historic Fair Hill arranges for volunteers to help plant it.

To date we’ve had over 30 people adopt trees for their sidewalks. We’ve grown from planting 5 years in our first year to nearly 30 in 2015.

The Importance of Trees in Philadelphia

As the University of Vermont Spatial Analysis Library puts it in their 2011 assessment, “Tree canopy provides many benefits to communities, improving water quality, saving energy, lowering city temperatures, reducing air pollution, enhancing property values, providing wildlife habitat, facilitating social and educational opportunities, and providing aesthetic benefits. ”

Overall, the assessment concluded that nearly 50% of Philadelphia is land that is possible tree canopy land; in Fairhill, we currently have 12 – 19% coverage, but could have as much as 42 – 49%. With our three acres of trees at the burial grounds, and new trees being planted along the street, we’re excited to see that number continue to rise.

Want to help us with our ongoing tree planting? Contact us to become a Tree Tender!

More Resources

A report on Philadelphia’s urban tree canopy funded by the city and the US Forest Service
PHS Tree Tenders site
PHS main site

Meredith Hutcheson

Meredith joined the Historic Fair Hill team in late 2015. She's been creating content and media since 2008. Strengthening communities both online and off is her passion.

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1 Response

  1. December 9, 2015

    […] According to the US Forest Service’s survey of Philadelphia’s tree canopy, Fairhill has only 12 – 19% tree canopy, even though it could support 42 – 49%. In partnership with local residents, Tree Tender volunteers, and the Philadelphia Horticultural Society, we’re moving towards a greener future. […]

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