Morris Arboretum is actively involved in the Philadelphia community and beyond. In addition to our invlovement as an institution, our employeess and volunteers are also engaged in many community projects.
The Morris Arboretum has received a William Penn Foundation grant to assist TreeVitalize in its effort to re-plant the lost urban forest of the region.
The goal of the TreeVitalize Program is to plant 1 million trees within the next five years, by 2012. These are to include larger caliper trees for city streets, parks, and other public property; seedlings in buffer plantings along streams to reduce erosion and improve water quality; and those purchased by homeowners for planting on private property with a TreeVitalize rebate discount. An additional goal is to train 10,000 volunteers in basic tree biology and tree care to assist their communities in establishing and maintaining new plantings. Ultimately, the goal of TreeVitalize is to establish strong urban forestry partnerships in all 14 Pennsylvania metropolitan areas and to build local capacity for sustaining the urban forest resource. For more information visit: www.treevitalize.net.
Morris Arboretum's staff and local volunteer groups have been involved in conservation and restoration work in the Wissahickon Park. Although it is part of the City of Philadelphia's Fairmount Park, the Wissahickon Park is geographically separated from most of Fairmount Park. The rugged terrain and native vegetation community types make Wissahickon Park vulnerable to stream bank degradation, as well as soil erosion along some of the more steeply-sloped trails. Organizations such as the Friends of the Wissahickon, the Wissahickon Garden Club, and local schools have helped by donating their valuable time and efforts to restoring parts of the park, especially in the Thomas Mill Ravine section.
The Arboretum is a partner in Philadelphia's Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival, a project of the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia (JASGP). In addition to the Festival, JASGP plants 100 flowering cherry trees in Philadelphia's Fairmount Park each year. Between 1998 and 2004, they planted an impressive 700 trees. Many of these trees stand along either side of the Schuylkill River upstream from Center City, Philadelphia. The Arboretum continues to work with the JASGP in the technical aspect of planting cherry trees and celebrating the annual festival.