Friday, June 5, 2009

Mapping NOPA Street Trees

Our NOPA blocks are (almost) filled with street trees.
Several years ago new tree-planting campaigns started almost as soon as tree basins were filled from the last planting. The organizing required hours and hours of work to get at least 35 residents to register so the neighborhood would qualify for subsidized trees and planting assistance. Friends of the Urban Forest (FUF) helped neighborhoods then -- as they do now -- plant new street trees, but first the community must come together to make it happen.

Each time I ride my bike along Grove Street near Baker I notice how well the trees on the south side are doing ten years after I helped plant them during a FUF campaign. I imagine 100 or so neighbors do the same thing with their special trees. In the spring the north side of Grove is transformed into a pink promenade of blossoms, and I think of the neighbors who made NOPA the leafy place it is today.

Where are the street trees in NOPA? You see them all the time, of course, but ever wonder how many trees are planted and which blocks are the leafiest? How about when the trees were planted and what species are on the different blocks?

An interactive San Francisco Tree Map is being developed to provide that information and much more. Today I tried to use the map and found it worked well enough to tantalize me with the possibilities. I hope FUF, one of the project designers, will obtain a U.S. Forest Service grant to complete the map. I zoomed in on NOPA and counted the ten street trees on Baker between Golden Gate and McAllister, but I was unable to access much more. Maybe you'll have better luck. Let us know.

Check the Friends of the Urban Forest site for more info on the street tree map and read more about it here in the May 31, 2009 Chronicle column "The Dirt" by Joe Eaton and Ron Sullivan.

To be a good tree steward, check FUF's recommendations.

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