Local News

Pruning trees in NYC

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

When you think about it, the trees in New York City are planted in pavement. They're dealing with pollution; pets, trucks and buses, often hit their branches.

Because of budget issues, the city doesn't spend a whole lot of money tending to those trees, but there are New Yorkers who donate their time and energy to make a difference.

"On the streets you're hustling and bustling and going to work you don't necessarily notice the trees. I didn't for a long time myself," said Lisa Pollard.

But these days, Pollard not only notices the city's trees, she's caring for them.

"I look for the low hanging dead and damaged branches," adds Pollard.

She's just less than 5 feet tall, but could use a pole saw.

There are a number of tools that will do the trick, but there are rules. Two feet on the ground, there are no ladders or climbing allowed.

Though at 6'6", Steve Boyce has an advantage. "It's like in the grocery store. Ladies ask you to grab something off the top shelf, coming in handy," he said.

And practice helps, but to do any pruning you need a citizen pruner certificate from the city's Department of Parks and Recreation. That involves a 12 hour class from Trees New York.

There's no pay involved, just the satisfaction of taking care of your community.

There are currently about 600,000 trees in the 5 boroughs, and several hundred thousand are planned for the coming years.

Tree pruners are vital to keeping these things alive.

Trees dealing with pavement and pollution, but a little snip here and a saw there can make a difference.

For more information, visit TreesNY.org

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