1. MLK Day of Service: An Opportunity for Environmental Justice

    By Kevin Jefferson and Eric Arnold, Urban Releaf On this year’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service (MLK DOS), we helped Urban Releaf plant trees on G Street in East Oakland. This is where we’ve been doing a lot of work the past few months. The area needs a lot of help; it’s one of the worst blocks in the city in terms of blight and illegal dumping. And as you might expect, its tree canopy is minimal. We wanted to have our MLK DOS event, which we’ve been doing for the past seven years, here, because this...
  2. From the Boston Globe: The City Is an Ecosystem

    The city is an ecosystem, pipes and all What scientists are finding when they treat the urban landscape as an evolving environment of its own By Courtney Humphries Boston Globe Correspondent November 07, 2014 Is a tree trying to survive in the city better off than a tree growing in the forest? The obvious answer would seem to be “no”: City trees face pollution, poor soil, and a root system disrupted by asphalt and pipes. But when ecologists at Boston University took core samples from trees around Eastern Massachusetts, they found a surprise: Boston street trees grow twice as fast...
  3. USFS Webinar: Urban Forests for Human Health & Wellness

    Urban Forests for Human Health and Wellness Wednesday, September 10, 2014 | 1:00 – 2:00pm ET People have described the healing power of nature for centuries. This webinar will present current research and best practices showing how outdoor spaces support human health and wellness. Such information can help nature planners and managers engage their community leaders in greening programs, and encourage municipal investments in nearby nature settings to improve human health and well-being. Kathleen Wolf will introduce the latest discourse on human habitat and health, and review health findings that may be of economic value in communities. Teresia Hazen will...
  4. Silence Isn’t Golden

    Over the next month, community groups and ReLeaf Network members across California have an opportunity to comment on two important issues. They are the Department of Water Resources’ (DWR) Integrated Regional Water Management Plan (IRWM); and the California Air Resources Board’s (CARB) Urban Forest Project Protocols. To date, these efforts have been fairly non-profitable for urban forestry groups working daily to green our golden state, but with guidance from stakeholders they could prove to be beneficial.   In March, 2014, Governor Brown and the Legislature directed DWR to expedite the solicitation and award of $200 million in IRWM funding to...
  5. National Walking Day

    Today, take a break from your normal routine and take a walk.   The American Heart Association celebrates National Walking Day every year on the first Wednesday in April. The holiday was created to increase the amount of activity people get and, in turn, their heart health. Healthy urban forests are an important part of making the walks you take for heart heath even better.   People who live in tree-lined neighborhoods are three times more likely to be active than those who live in less green communities. Studies have also shown that the brain operates in a more meditative...
  6. Volunteers Make a Difference in Woodland

    Volunteers can make a huge difference for their communities. The amazing folks at Woodland Tree Foundation, a California ReLeaf Network member, are the perfect example of how people with a common goal can make their communities stronger, their neighborhoods more beautiful, and their town’s residents healthier.
  7. Meet the Trees in All Policies Speakers

    At the end of February 2014, in both Northern and Southern California, California ReLeaf hosted “Trees in All Policies,” a workshop designed to teach participants how to deliver a message that drives home the importance of healthy urban forests to decision makers. We’re excited about our line up of great speakers and everything that they bring to the conversation surrounding trees, their benefits, and where they fit into local, regional, and statewide policy.   February 25: El Sobrante February 27: Los Angeles   Kris Lev-Twombly Director of Public Policy, California Association of Nonprofits Kris Lev-Twombly is the director of public...
  8. Welcome to Houston Park

    The underserved Houston neighborhood in Visalia had no public gathering places or recreational facilities. The new Houston Neighborhood Park, planted by Urban Tree Foundation in partnership with California ReLeaf, represents the hard work of numerous volunteers from the community coming together to create positive change in their neighborhood. More than 280 volunteers were on hand to make the park opening a success. Children were given an educational presentation about urban forests and the benefits of trees. Over 90 children in attendance were surveyed on their knowledge and opinions of trees. The Houston Neighborhood Park planting event planted 43 trees and...