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Why Do We Need Trees? at 92nd St. Y in NYC

Nina BassukLecture at New York City’s 92nd Street Y:
“Why Do We Need Trees?”
Nina Bassuk, Department of Horticulture, Cornell University
12/07/2011 – 7:00pm

Even with all of the best of intentions, anyone trying to plant a tree in the inner city needs to have more than just a desire to be ‘green’ if the tree is to attain its envisioned size and function. It is only through efforts that recognize and provide for the needs of the tree, will we gain the benefits for which we planted these plants in the first place — whether it is for shade, pollution reduction, reduced storm water runoff, increased property values,erosion control, habitats for wildlife, windbreaks, blocking undesirable views, creating parks for recreation and providing a link between our increasingly urban existence and the natural world-a very human need.

Sometimes it’s hard to imagine how trees survive in their concrete coffins. We need to approach planting trees in human impacted landscapes as rigorously as we engineer the urban environment into which we place them. No one would think of building a house without adhering to sound construction principles from a solid foundation through sturdy walls and a non-leaky roof. Yet with trees in the urban context, we seem to feel that they will take care of themselves. Learn about how trees can thrive in the city and why it’s important that they do.

Cornell Plantations has partnered with the 92nd Street Y in New York City for its “Changing Earth” lecture series. This unique series of seven lectures will take place monthly from November 2011 to May 2012, and is part of the Y’s First Class Science adult education program. The year-long series kicked off on November 16th and features diverse topics and speakers from Cornell University and other organizations.

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