Growing Neighborhood Foresters

We are often told the city does not have the money to plant and maintain enough vegetation to truly shade our neighborhoods. Individual citizens sometimes say they don’t have the skill, physical ability, or knowledge to plant and care for a tree.

So, we work with these neighbors and others to plant rain and hardy native trees and understory plants; and then steward those plantings. That way, those who live closest to their section of the neighborhood forest, and who care most about it, are able to well take care of the forest they help plant and love.

Our hands-on Work & Learn Stewarding Parties offer many different opportunities to gain new skills and experience as you help enhance sections of the neighborhood forest. It’s also a great opportunity to get to know more of your neighbors and folks from neighboring neighborhoods as we help each other out. We plan these parties around neighbors and areas of the neighborhood forest needing help. See figures 4A-F below for progressive work done in a water-harvesting and pruning & mulching Work & Learn Stewarding Party

Figure. 4A. Before planting the rain. All stormwater flows to the street. Lines in dirt denote what will be the perimeter of water- and leaf drop-harvesting basins to be dug. See the step-by-step progression in the following images.
Photo: Brad Lancaster
Figure 4B. Digging along the basins’ perimeter first to clearly delineate the basins’ perimeter before the feet of diggers erases the lines.
Photo: Brad Lancaster
Figure 4C. More neighborhood volunteers of all ages help out.
Photo: Brad Lancaster
Figure 4D. Path is raked smooth. Native wildflower and understory plant seeds are sown in the basins. Trees are pruned to regain access for pedestrians on the walkway, and bicyclists and vehicles on the street. Prunings are cut up into 6-inch or shorter pieces and placed in basins to create water-conserving, soil-building mulch that also helps make clear what is basin and what is path. Since there is more moisture in the basins, the prunings more quickly decompose into fertile soil.
Photo: Brad Lancaster
Figure 4E. Work done. This section of the public right-of-way now harvests water, leaf drop, and fertility; rather than draining it away. Photo: Brad Lancaster
Figure 4F. Roof runoff harvested in basin on left. Road runoff harvested in basin on right via dip in street curb at driveway inlet.
Photo: Brad Lancaster

For more info…
Sign up with us to be notified of Neighborhood Forester events in Tucson, Arizona

• Check out our Be a Neighborhood Forester page for our Aims & Goals, Origins, Regular Events and more

• Check out our Four Levels of Neighborhood Foresters page for different levels of commitment and support