The start of summer means a lot of things — beach trips, long hikes, outdoor BBQs and pool time. At the Baltimore Tree Trust, it also means the start of watering season for all the trees we planted over the past two years. Pledging a two-year commitment to newly planted trees, BTT continues to perform maintenance activities, like pruning, weeding, mulching and watering, for two years after planting. And since we plant about 2,000 trees a year, we have almost 6,000 trees to take care of and water throughout the summer. Trees are especially important in the summer because they help to reduce the urban heat island effect. Studies have shown that neighborhoods which lack trees are upwards of 15 degrees hotter! You can read more about the urban heat island effect here.
As we need volunteers to get all of our trees in the ground, we also need volunteers to help keep our trees looking great and our city a little greener. Newly planted trees, or trees that have been in the ground for less than three years, need 25 gallons of water a week to survive. If trees receive about 1.5 inches of rainfall in a week, watering is not necessary. After afternoon thunderstorms today, the Baltimore forecast over the next week looks pretty sunny, and while that is good news for a long weekend and all the previously mentioned activities, our trees may need some help getting their water next week. If you have a new tree in front of your property, or know someone who does, check out the below video to see how to use the GatorBags (the green bags on all of our newly planted trees) and help us to keep our green friends watered!