Trees Please had a great year inventorying in McQuesten and Crown Point! It was fun to get to know these two communities in detail as we looked for trees and roamed with air quality monitors. Thanks to a total of 21 amazing volunteers, we surveyed 2305 trees of over 100 species. Of these trees, 361 were Honeylocust, a hardy street-tree favourite, and 313 were Norway Maples, a once-favourite no longer planted due to its invasiveness. Distant followers were Austrian Pine (98) and Freeman Maple (95), which is a cultivar cross between Silver and Red Maple, and a newer favourite for city planting, especially in The Centre on Barton. We loved seeing some Carolinian native species being planted, such has Hackberry (33), Kentucky Coffeetree (23), Tulip Tree (17), Sassafras (5), and Ohio Buckeye (2).
These trees are providing over $100,000 worth of essential annual ecosystem benefits, from energy conserved, to air quality improved. Our street trees are working hard to capture 50% of particulate matter from the air. Check out the numbers from trees inventories in 2017:
We also had a blast giving away 171 trees thanks to the Hamilton Community Foundation for Canada 150. These native trees are now planted across the city with a focus on our Trees Please neighbourhoods. From fruiting Smooth Serviceberries to Bur Oaks that can support hundreds of species, these trees were thoughtfully selected to withstand an urban habitat and provide multiple environmental benefits. Thanks to everyone who became a steward and will look after these new trees as they grow Hamilton’s forest!
The Trees Please team even got to visit 11 school and summer camp groups this year and teach kids all about our new favourite being: lichen. Many students had never heard of this unique compound organism, made of a symbiotic relationship between an alga or cyanobacteria and a fungus. We’d explore the schoolyard looking for different varieties and discuss how the pollution-sensitive lichen can give us an idea of local air quality, and how we need more trees to clean the air!
Join us in 2018 as we inventory trees in the Sherman Hub and North End neighbourhood. We’d love to hear from you if you know of areas that could use some extra trees. Also be sure to keep an eye out in the new year for exciting workshops and events – lots in the works!
Trees Please is a project of Environment Hamilton and the Hamilton Naturalists’ Club, generously supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation.