Friends Group Joins Forces with Other Neighborhood Stewards


Nancy Perez, Yasmina Keller, Bin Feng Zheng, Julie Welch, Doris and Anna Debartolo, James Bond and Lynn Kennedy

The Friends of Astoria Heights Park is honored to be part of  The Astoria 5.  The Astoria 5 Coalition of tree care stewards consists of 5 groups: Friends of Astoria Heights Park, 27th Street Block Asscociation, Hoyt Avenue Stewards, the 38th Street Stewards and the Astoria Green  Gardeners Association.

Astoria Green Gardeners  clean up event

Astoria Green Gardeners clean up event

In 2014- 2015, the five groups organized 18 street tree stewardship, clean up and planting events, drawing a total  of over 400 volunteers and caring for  more than 150 trees, 327 native perenials and shrubs and planting  at least 2450 bulbs.  In addition, 63 greening Western Queens  tree guards were installed, as determined by stewardship committment, in their immediate stewardship areas.  Within the groups, 8 Are Certified Citizen pruners, 3 Partnerships Academy Fellows and 5 grant recipients. The groups all participated in visioning and working group  meetings to build a coalition of street tree stewardship groups in Western Queens

Hoyt Avenue event fall 2014

Hoyt Avenue event spring 2015

In 2015, the Partnership for Park, a program of NYC Parks and City Parks Foundation approved seed fund  of $3500 in support of the Greening Western Queens Community Forestry Project stewardship group, Astoria 5.  The funding was made possible by the Greening Western Queens Fund of North Star Fund.  The map of Greening Western Queens project area was defined by a legal settlement between Con Edison and the community in Western Queens which was impacted adversely during a power outage in the summer of 2006.  The Greening Western Queens Urban Forestry and Community Stewardship program, established in 2011, has brought hundreds of trees and community enriching tree care projects to neighborhoods in Astoria, Long Island City sunny side and Woodside.  Astoria 5 received the additional seed funds because of its high level of committment and organization to organizing tree care efforts. The group plans to use the funds to encourage new stewards to care for neighborhood trees and especially by encouraging youth involvement.

Nancy Perez of 27 th street Block Association mulch Watering event  summer 2015

Nancy Perez of 27 th street Block Association mulch Watering event summer 2015

Trees are important to us for many reasons including, reducing pollution, reducing flooding, beautifying and cooling, and providing space for animals to live.  Tree stewardship is important for improving our environment, our neighborhoods, creating community and improving our health. There continues to be a need for tree care stewards in several planting locations in the project area  and volunteers who are willing to monitor our tree beds over time.

Lynn Kennedy  and volunteers at recent summer event 2015

Lynn Kennedy and volunteers at recent summer event 2015