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Growing Together: Partnering with One Tree Planted and NYC Parks for Tree Equity in Kissena Park

By on February 02, 2024

By Ashley Eyen

At the Natural Areas Conservancy, we are always thrilled to find collaborators who are as passionate about urban nature as we are. So it makes perfect sense that we would partner with One Tree Planted given their mission to restore forests, create habitat for biodiversity, and make a positive social impact around the world. In 2023, we worked with One Tree Planted and NYC Parks on a large-scale forest restoration project in Kissena Park. Working with NYC Parks Stewardship, local community members, and corporate volunteers, we planted a total of 2,276 trees, taking significant strides in advancing tree equity and promoting forest health in this bustling neighborhood.

Kissena Park, surrounded by the highly urbanized neighborhood of Flushing, Queens, is a heavily used green space offering diverse recreation opportunities. The park spans nearly 60 acres of natural areas, featuring freshwater wetlands and native forests. Planned restoration work in Kissena Park aims to protect a healthy mature tree canopy while addressing a degraded understory threatened by invasive species.

In close collaboration with NYC Parks, we partnered with One Tree Planted to engage community members and corporate volunteers in tree-planting activities throughout 2023. The project kicked off on Arbor Day with a community volunteer event followed by three days of continued planting by NYC Parks staff. Later that year, we hosted volunteers from One Tree Planted sponsor Boxed Water to finish planting, increasing the tree density and further enhancing this remarkable urban forest. 

This large-scale forest restoration not only contributed to the ecological resilience of Kissena Park, but also created opportunities for over 200 volunteers to actively participate in caring for the newly planted trees in their local natural area. We are incredibly grateful to One Tree Planted for their commitment to nurturing and sustaining New York City’s urban green spaces through environmental stewardship and community engagement.

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