Monthly Archives: October 2014

Thanks to All Our Volunteers for New Trees in McElderry Park & Old Goucher!

A big THANK YOU! to the hundreds of volunteers, trained TreeKeepers, and neighbors who came out this fall to plant 183 street trees, greening up our two Trees for Public Health NeighborhoodsMcElderry Park and Old Goucher. A special shout-out to Goucher College, whose students showed up en masse in McElderry Park before school started for a day of planting, clean-up, and storm-water stencil-spraying, and then returned for more street tree planting days in both McElderry Park and Old Goucher, where the original Goucher campus now houses the Baltimore Lab School.

Dan Millender, our Executive Director, and Amanda Cunningham, Director of Programs, rallied the troops, while our Tree Guys Joe and Mark were indispensable with tree stakes, Spuddy, shovels, and whatever else was needed.

Planting up Kenwood Avenue in McElderry Park

McElderry Park: Kashawna Duncan (pictured), a Summer Green Team Crew Leader, spent a morning home from college helping getting in more street trees to create more shade next summer for McElderry Park. The Tree Trust and all our many volunteers planted 100 more trees in October and November, leafing out the adjoining streets.

The landscape architects of Ayers Saint Gross joined us for a special Friday afternoon street tree planting. Kudos to Jonathon Ceci of that firm and his team for their enthusiasm and hard work. We look forward now to the Spring of 2015 when we and our partners there launch  our final planting season in McElderry Park. We will have doubled the number of street trees, cooling the air, absorbing storm water, and beautifying the community. Thanks to the McElderry Park Community, Banner Neighborhoods, Amazing Grace Lutheran Church, and Prince of Peace for all your help!

  • Old Goucher Community Assn. President Kelly Cross & Tree Trust ED Dan Millender – photo by John Dean

Old Goucher: Our youngest and smallest tree planter is pictured, standing proudly with parents and neighbors after planting this handsome European Hornbeam that's a new arboreal resident of their community.

And in the next photo, two of Baltimore's veteran community forestry folk: Amanda Cunningham, Tree Trust Director of Programs & Gene DeSantis — they've planted trees together for years. Gene had just finished planting his 14,350th tree!!!


Our youngest tree planter with family & friends – photo by John Dean

Two longtime tree planters: Amanda Cunningham, Tree Trust Director of Programs & Gene DeSantis – photo by John Dean


Meet Joe & Mark, Our Tree Planting Guys

Watch them plant trees with Sustainability Joe in the video below, along with ED Dan Millender and Amanda Cunningham, Director of Programs. Joe Daniels (left) and Mark Spitzer are the Tree Trust’s outstanding team on the street. They operate out of the Jerry Van (named for its kind donor), helping with our volunteer tree plantings and getting trees into the ground with other partners.



Joe and Mark can be seen around town planting trees with TreeKeepers classes on South Charles Street, making life easier for volunteers in McElderry Park or getting ginkgos in the ground with the Downtown Partnership.


baltimore tree tr 10_5_141851

More than 300 Street Trees Coming to Old Goucher

Look at this close-up of the i-Tree map, created by Zoe Clarkwest of Rain Underground, and you can see many of Old Goucher's existing 1075 street trees and also some of the many places new trees are coming! In 2015,  residents and volunteers working with the Baltimore Tree Trust will be planting hundreds of new street trees.

How many new trees are coming? Zoe and co-worker Jenny Wienckowski determined that there is space for 423 new trees in Old Goucher, including 79 empty tree wells ready for planting, and another 73 tree wells with stumps. They also identified 271 potential locations for new tree wells and identified those sites by address. This fall Old Goucher residents,  the Tree Trust, and many TreeKeepers planted 49 trees at two fun plantings.


Joe of the Tree Trust is an ace at these stencils.

Now, the Tree Trust has spray-painted all the possible new pits so that Flanigan & Sons can have the winter months to remove the concrete and create the new tree wells.

Zoe Clarkwest of Rain Underground reported on street trees to the Old Goucher Community Association at its September meeting. She and Jenny Wienckowski have completed the neighborhood's Street Tree Inventory,  assessing each and every street tree to generate a wealth of useful information. Their work provides a detailed street tree portrait of Old Goucher, our second Trees for Public Health Neighborhood. The inventory shows that Old Goucher has 1075 street trees, with  76 percent  in good condition, 18 percent in fair condition, while only 6 percent are in poor condition or dead and dying. Old Goucher has 62 different tree species, but three dominate, making up half the trees: Littleleaf Linden, 194 trees or 18 percent of the total, Callery Pear, 190 trees, and Red Maple, 179, or 17 percent. The next three most common species are: Norway Maple, 60 trees,  Japanese Zelkova, 43 trees, and London Plane, 41 trees. The Tree Trust will use this and other data to help determine what trees to plant in coming seasons as we work with the Old Goucher Community Association to methodically plant up the whole neighborhood.


Jenny & Zoe determine species.

The i-Tree database for Old Goucher shows that collectively the existing street trees reduce CO2 by a net of 141.6 tons, (value $2,124 per year), while they intercept 1.4 million gallons of storm water each year – about 1,330 gallons per tree (value $14,113 per year). The trees serve as vital green infrastructure. As more are planted and the young trees mature, the community's current meager 11.9 percent tree canopy should double.


Zoe assesses leaf condition as "fair"

How A Tree Inventory Gets Done

During the summer,  Zoe and Jenny examined each street tree. Here Zoe is  sizing up a young Willow Oak. They use a smart phone to enter all their data into i-Tree Streets software. The duo, both trained as landscape architects, begin by identifying the tree species. Next, Jenny uses a tape measure to determine the Willow Oak trunk’s diameter at four feet off the ground: 1.3 inches, then she measures the width of the tree’s canopy: 3-feet-wide. Height: not quite 10 feet. Condition of tree’s wood: Good. Leaves? Fair. Maintenance needed: Trim lower limbs. Tree pit size: 4 x 6 feet.


Jenny measures the trunk diameter of a Little Leaf Linden.

And that is not all! Any sidewalk heaving? No. Any overhead utility lines? No. Next: GPS coordinates and address. As they moved along from block to block, they noted each empty tree well, any stumps that need to be removed, hazardous trees. And, very important…. all addresses where new tree wells can be opened and trees planted. “Every four trees,” says Zoe, “I submit my data to the i-Tree link.” Equally important, residents who have taken the free TreeKeepers courses (sign up on this site!) to learn about tree care can use the detailed list of what young street trees need maintenance to provide care. The Inventory Team uses standard inventory protocol as set forth by i-Tree® (for details see: I-Tree Streets 5.0 User Manual at