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Van Cortlandt Park Tree Planting: A Ghost Forest Supporting Event

In conjunction with Maya Lin’s Ghost Forest in Madison Square Park, join the Natural Areas Conservancy, Van Cortlandt Park Alliance, and Madison Square Park Conservancy for a tree planting event on Saturday, October 23 in Van Cortlandt Park, the Bronx.

Volunteers will work together to plant 200 native, climate-adapted trees in the park’s Northeast Forest section in the Woodlawn neighborhood. These native trees are specially selected because they are adaptable to changing climate conditions projected for Van Cortlandt Park’s native coastal oak/hickory forests. The types of trees we’ll plant include shagbark hickory, shadbush, and American hornbeam — and they will help make the forest more resilient to climate change over time.

PLEASE NOTE: We will meet at 9:00AM at Van Cortlandt Park East near the Woodlawn Playground and walk together to the planting site. Please wear sturdy, closed toe shoes, long pants, and clothes you don’t mind getting dirty. Bring water and a snack. Gloves and equipment will be provided. Event staff will show you what you need to know to properly dig a hole and plant the trees. Since this activity requires tools and some lifting, please do not bring unsupervised children or any pets.


This planting event is one of a series of five events taking place throughout New York City’s five boroughs. These events are held in partnership amongst the Natural Areas Conservancy, Madison Square Park Conservancy, and additional park conservancies, inspired by artist Maya Lin’s Ghost Forest in Madison Square Park. The 1,000 trees planted during these events will offset the carbon emissions from the Ghost Forest installation and bring vital life to urban green spaces.

These plantings are also a part of a citywide effort to restore and care for over 7,000 acres of forests managed by NYC Parks for the enjoyment of all. The particular sites chosen for the plantings were determined by analyzing data showing where healthy forests were under threat and needed additional young trees to prepare for the future. By improving the health of New York City’s forests we are ensuring park users can continue to find solace and benefit from them in the years to come.

Leadership support for the exhibition and public programs is generously provided by The Ruth Stanton Foundation.

This planting event is made possible with support from the John T. and Jane A. Wiederhold Foundation.

October 23, 2021

9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Van Cortlandt Park

Natural Area Conservancy