Greening of Detroit will plant over 1,525 trees this fall

The Greening of Detroit will plant more than 1,525 trees throughout the city before Thanksgiving. According to Greening, a healthy tree canopy should be about 40 percent. Detroit currently has a tree canopy of 22.5 percent. Greening will work in collaboration with neighborhood groups and corporate partners, including Quicken Loans, to help restore the tree canopy in Detroit neighborhoods during its fall 2013 tree planting schedule.
"We plant trees in the spring and fall, but we really like to highlight the fall planting season even though it's not the one people think about all the time because it gives the trees a chance to establish roots before the growing season," says Greening of Detroit President Rebecca Salminen Witt.
Trees add economic value to an area. Trees raise the home values of residential areas while in commercial districts people tend to shop more on a forested street. Greening also strategically plans their plantings to prevent stormwater runoff so Detroit's sewer systems aren't overwhelmed with sewage ending up in the Detroit River. Trees planted on the West Side means the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department can avoid replacing a $1.2 billion system.

"Using plant materials to suck up storm water really adds an economic value to the city," Witt says. "It also saves the city money in getting water out and also on water treatment. It will literally save the city billions of dollars."
The nonprofit uses about 40 different species of trees selected to be resistant to aggressive insect infestations and diseases like the ash bore and Dutch elm disease, both of which have had devastating effects on the tree canopy. They are using the Detroit Future City framework as a "playbook" to that to decide what projects to pursue in what areas in a given season.  
Every Saturday through November 16, The Greening of Detroit, with their own army of volunteers as well as volunteers from corporate and neighborhood partners, will plant hundreds of trees each week in different Detroit neighborhoods. Upcoming locations are as follows:
Oct. 19Pierson and Braile streets
Oct. 26Rouge Park
Nov. 2Southfield Plymouth E. streets
Nov. 9 – Southfield Plymouth W. streets
Nov. 9 – Ilene Express
Nov. 16 – Lafayette Boulevard
Nov. 16 – Patton Park                                      
They started in late September with 450 trees in Rouge Park, where they plan on planting a total of 1,600 trees over the next 18 months in partnership with U-Haul and The Conservation Fund.

Anyone interested in volunteering with the Greening of Detroit can sign up online here (click on "Get Involved") or call 313-237-8733. 
Source: Greening of Detroit President Rebecca Salminen Witt
Writer: Nicole Rupersburg

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Nicole Rupersburg is a former Detroiter now in Las Vegas who regularly writes about food, drink, and urban innovators. You can follow her on Instagram @eatsdrinksandleaves and Twitter @ruperstarski.