Save A Tree!
A healthy and thriving urban forest provides abundant benefits to urban communities, but unlike trees in the forest, New York City street trees must regularly contend with life-threatening conditions. In 2011, TreesNY launched the Save a Tree initiative, designed to free at-risk trees from potentially life threatening conditions and support the long-term health of New York City's urban forest.
Girdled trees are all too common, in large part due to the fact that girdling is often caused by seemingly non-threatening objects - Christmas lights, restaurant lights, tree grates, tree cages, abandoned bike chains and locks. These long-forgotten items inhibit healthy and productive tree growth by damaging the cambium – the tree’s essential growing layer.
As a tree grows in height, it also increases in diameter. A tree trunk consists of several layers including bark, phloem, cambium and xylem. The outer bark protects the trunk from injuries that make the tree susceptible to insects and disease and prevents water loss. Phloem transports food from the leaves to the rest of the tree and xylem transports water and minerals from the roots to the leaves. All of these layers are produced by cambium, the growing layer between the xylem and the phloem. If the cambium is damaged, the tree cannot produce phloem or xylem and will eventually die.
The objective of the Save a Tree initiative is to identify at-risk trees and remove constricting items to prevent them from dying. With the help of our volunteers, TreesNY is currently cataloging at-risk street trees in Manhattan. In an effort to help mitigate the stress caused by the rescue process, TreesNY and volunteers steward all of trees. TreesNY removes litter from tree beds, cultivates the soil and waters the trees.
If you know of a tree in need of saving please fill out the information below.
Our Save A Tree program is funded by New Yorkers and goes towards preventing unnecessary deaths by girdling.