To NYC Business Owners, Hugging Trees Is Hip

This summer the Human Impacts Institute(HII) team has partnered with MillionTrees NYCto increase tree stewardship in the South Williamsburg community in Brooklyn. The goal is to get local small businesses to adopt the street trees in front of their stores. You may be wondering, “What does adopting a tree entail?” As a proud tree parent, the participants can take part in priority tree care activities like watering, weeding, mulching, removing litter, and in optional activities like installing a tree guard and planting flowers around the tree.


Popular Williamsburg spots, like Foodswings, have made their adoption personal by naming their tree. Assaf, co-owner of the Lighthouse, has made a plan to green the area around the restaurant using his newly adopted tree as inspiration.


The HII team has taken to the streets in July to beautify the tree pits of the trees that local businesses have adopted. This means aerating the soil and mulching. Now it is up to the businesses to love and nurture their beautiful trees! We hope that we will see some of our businesses and their trees in New York City’s First Ever Beautiful Tree Bed Contest! All of you at home can follow the competition on facebook at


Adopting a tree is the first step in our Ecopreneurs pilot project. This is a twelve-step program with twelve different initiatives, each focusing on a different business practice that can be implemented by a small business to reduce their environmental impact. So far we have nineteen local businesses that have adopted trees. If you have a business and would like to adopt a street tree email us

By Dominique Murray, 2012 Human Impacts Institute Environmental Services Intern

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