The 20,000 trees that line Newton’s streets make them wonderfully green, and create a beautiful, pleasant, and comfortable environment to live in. While adding to the quality of life for Newton residents, street trees also contribute to higher property values.
This part of Newton’s urban forest, however, is slowly disappearing. In the 1970s, there were some 40,000 street trees in the City. This 50% decline in street trees is due to a number of factors including: age, insufficient funding for properly maintaining trees, a lack of diversity of tree species, road salt, gas leaks, various forms of damage, and disease.
Some facts you should know: In recent years Newton has been losing about 650 street trees each year, and as many as 1,000 due to increased funding for removal of dead and risk trees. After two decades of contracting out tree maintenance, the City brought this work back in-house in FY2013 with an initial crew of three, later increased to six, to care for our street and park trees. The Forestry Department’s FY2018 goal is to plant 700 trees, including Newton Tree Conservancy plantings. The City’s 15-year planting plan would reach 800 trees per year in the later years, but only if additional personnel and equipment are approved to keep up with future tree maintenance.
How You Can Help
- JOIN US – Newton Tree Conservancy memberships are for the calendar year, and we renew current members and solicit new ones each December. But you can join (or contribute) anytime. You can download a membership application as a fillable PDF (opens in a new window) and send the completed form to Newton Tree Conservancy, P.O. Box 233, Newton, MA 02468 or email it to email@example.com . New members get a free NTC tote bag to help spread awareness.