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The History of Trees in DC

August 3, 2010

The Washington Post’s John Kelly explored the roots (sorry for the pun!) of the District’s trees this week. Apparently Thomas Jefferson ordered the first street trees to be planted in DC (poplars along Penn Ave), and was upset to see trees cut down during new construction in the new capital (favorite quote: “The unnecessary felling of a tree, perhaps the growth of centuries, seems to me a crime little short of murder; it pains me to an unspeakable degree”). By 1913, WaPo dubbed DC “a city of trees,” and about 100,000 graced the city streets (not including park trees).

For the full article, click here.

Luckily, we have many individuals and organizations out there working to restore DC’s treehood splendor. One of my favorites is Casey’s Trees, which, in addition to actually planting trees, has amazing education programs. I strongly encourage everyone to check them out.

Finally, this article pointed out a book which is promptly going into my to-read list: City of Trees: The Complete Field Guide to the Trees of Washington, D.C., by Melanie Choukas-Bradley and illustrated by Polly Alexander. It’s recently updated and in its 3rd edition.

One Comment leave one →
  1. September 28, 2010 11:36 pm

    Thanks for this great post. The info I have gained from your blog is truly encouraging

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