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Rainier Beach Sound Transit Station Work Party

Saturday, July 26
9 am - noon
Meet at the NE corner of MLK Way and S Henderson St
RSVP here

As part of Mayor Murray's Summer of Safety Initiative and the City of Seattle's effort to grow trees in Rainier Beach, Seattle reLeaf Tree Ambassadors and volunteers will be working to improve the trees around the Rainier Beach Sound Transit station. Tools and refreshments provided. Dress for the weather and wear closed toe shoes.


Trees for Neighborhoods Applications Open Soon!

Does this hot weather have you wishing you had some shade? Plant a tree in your yard this fall through Trees for Neighborhoods. Check out the species we will have available. Applications open August 4 at 10 am.


Seeking Urban Forestry Volunteers

Seattle's Department of Parks and Recreation is looking for volunteer urban forest educators to work with youth in Seattle's parks and greenspaces. Volunteers would be focused on teaching kids about the importance of our urban forest and leading stewardship events. Read the job description for more information. Applications are due August 18.


Greening Rainier Beach

The City of Seattle is focusing on growing trees in the Rainier Beach neighborhood. Throughout the year, you may see us working on important tree projects such as planting, caring for young trees, pruning, and clearing trees away from power lines to reduce power outages. Learn more about our efforts in Rainier Beach and how you can get involved.


Wallingford / Fremont Landscape Makeover

Saturday, August 9th
9 am – noon
Meet at the northeast side of Aurora & N 46th intersection, 915 N 46th St. Seattle, WA
RSVP here

Join the Seattle Tree Ambassadors for a neighborhood work party to clean up the 46th Ave & Aurora bus stop and staircase and give it a new look! We’ll be pulling weeds, picking up garbage, and mulching to make the area safer and more pleasant for transit users and pedestrians. Please join your neighbors, meet new friends, and offer a hand. We’ll provide tools, gloves and refreshments. No prior experience necessary—work options for all ages. Contact with questions.


Beacon Hill Volunteer Work Party

Saturday, August 16th
9 am – noon
Meet at the Shell Station on Beacon Ave S & 15th Ave S
RSVP here

Renew our urban landscape!  Come join the Seattle Tree Ambassadors in renovating the traffic triangle at 15th Ave and Beacon Ave S. Join your neighbors and help us take the first steps towards creating a wonderful landscape that all will enjoy by helping us pick-up trash, weed, and mulch. Meet at the Shell Station on Beacon Ave & 15th at 9 am. Tools, gloves, safety vests, and snacks will be provided. Contact with questions.


Stop Tree Topping

The arrival of summer often prompts people to prune their tree. If your trees are being pruned, be sure they are not being topped. Tree topping is an outdated pruning practice that indiscriminately removes large amounts of leaves and branches. It looks terrible, causes serious damage to the tree, and often turns a safe tree into a safety hazard. Check out this great resource from the City of Tacoma on why tree topping is a terrible way to treat your tree. If you are hiring someone to prune your trees, make sure they are an ISA Certified Arborist. A legitimate arborist will never recommend tree topping.


Celebrating Earth Day by Giving Trees More Room to Grow

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) announced on Earth Day that they have begun work on SDOT's first substantial public works project installing Silva Cells, a system that provides the space for large trees to grow with healthy roots in a manner compatible with other infrastructure in the right of way.

Today’s work will involve excavating the soil in preparation for installing a total of 738 cells, which will support more than 40 trees along Mercer Street, Aurora Avenue/SR99 and Dexter Avenue as part of the Mercer Corridor construction project. Roughly 10 to 16 four-foot by eight-foot cells will be installed for every London Plane and Scarlet Oak tree that is to be planted.

Read more in the press release here.


Seattle City Light Earns Tree Line USA Recognition

For the second year in a row, the National Arbor Day Foundation and the National Association of State Foresters have awarded Tree Line USA status to Seattle City Light. Tree Line USA status was granted in recognition of Seattle City Light's efforts to maintain healthy trees under power lines. Certified arborists oversee all tree-related work by Seattle City Light crews and contractors. Seattle City Light achieved Tree Line USA status by meeting five program standards:

1. Follow industry standards for quality tree care
2. Provide annual worker training in best tree-care practices
3. Sponsor a tree planting and public education program
4. Maintain a tree-based energy conservation program
5. Participate in an Arbor Day celebration.


Tree of Life Art Exhibit

University Friends Meeting Social Hall Art Gallery
4001 9th Ave NE, Seattle
For more information, contact Clarena at or 206-632-9839
Exhibit runs through the end of June; hours are Mon - Fri, 9:30 am - 1 pm; Sat and Sun 10 am - 1 pm or by appointment.

This exhibit, curated by a Tree Ambassador, showcases the artwork of trees by Pacific NW artists as a way to inspire and help Seattle's residents reconnect with nature, specifically the beauty, wisdom, and mystery of trees. The Tree of Life, an ancient and powerful symbol, is deeply embedded in the human psyche. It represents and evokes life, even before science proved its role in providing oxygen and transmuting carbon dioxide.

The 15 Pacific NW artists represent the UW School of Art, the University of Puget Sound School of Art, Sierra Club members, and local community artists from young children to the professional award-winning artist are represented. They have used different media and approaches to expressing the beauty of trees.

Read the Curator's Statement here.


2013 Progress Report and 2014 Work Plan

Curious to know more about what the City of Seattle's urban forestry team is working on? Our 2013 progress report and 2014 work plan are now available.


Seattle Aubudon Launches New Tree Map

Seattle Audubon has recently launced an amibitious new website which seeks to map trees across the city and quantify the many benefits such as cleaner air and cleaner water that those trees provide. Check it out and add your favorite tree today!


Our Urban Forest is Among the Top 10 in the Country!

American Forests has just named the 10 Best Cities in the country for urban forestry - and Seattle is one of them! Seattle's high ranking was based on these criteria:

  • Civic engagement in maintaining the urban forest;
  • Urban forest strategies and city greening to address city infrastructure challenges;
  • Accessibility of urban forest and greenspaces to the public;
  • Overall health and condition of the city’s urban forest;
  • Documented knowledge about its urban forests; and
  • Urban forest management plans and management activities.

You can read more in local press reports from King5 and KPLU. You can also check out the case study American Forests recently published about Seattle and see how we stack up compared to Portland, Milwaukee, Denver, Baltimore, and more.


Have a Question about Trees? Ask Our Experts!

Ask our experts.

Q. Why should I plant a large tree?

A. Healthy, mature trees provide many benefits to people and the environment. To maximize those benefits, plant a tree with the largest mature size that fits your space.

Large trees often become treasured neighborhood assets.  Research has shown that they provide higher quality habitat for birds and other wildlife, and they have larger root systems to help stabilize hillsides and prevent erosion. Large trees do more to buffer weather conditions, providing shade on hot days to reduce the need for air conditioning, and blocking winter winds to help save on heating bills.

Large evergreen trees, especially conifers, are even better. Because large conifers grow so tall in our region, they produce a larger volume of leaf area on a smaller footprint – using the same amount of yard space but working harder to take in carbon dioxide, produce oxygen, and filter out air pollutants. And because evergreens hold their needles and leaves through the winter, our rainy season, they reduce stormwater runoff to a much greater extent than do small deciduous trees.

Before choosing a tree, make sure you have enough space for it to reach its mature size. If you have a big enough area, larger trees will provide the most benefits.

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