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Detroit is halfway to its goal of 10,000 new trees. Here's how you can get one in front of your house

Detroit officials say the city is more than halfway to its goal of planting 10,000 new trees.
City of Detroit Department of General Services
Detroit officials say the city is more than halfway to its goal of planting 10,000 new trees.

Detroit officials said Thursday that they're more than halfway to meeting a city goal of planting 10,000 new trees. The city said more than 5,500 trees have been planted since 2017.

Detroit residents can request the trees in their neighborhoods, and a city worker will come out and plant them.

The type of tree will be determined by environmental factors, said Angel Squalls with Detroit's Forestry Department.

Residents do not have to own their homes in order to request a tree. The trees are planted in the berm — the grassy area between the sidewalk and street, in the city's right-of-way.

Detroit officials decided to regrow the city’s tree canopies after diseases and pests killed hundreds of trees.

The tree planting fund receives up to $3 million each fiscal year, Squalls said.

She noted that trees are benefits to neighborhoods: they cool temperatures, reduce flooding, and filter the air.

"Especially with the projected impact of climate change, with our earth warming, it’s essential for us to go ahead and restore tree canopy within the City of Detroit," Squalls said.

The watering and maintenance of trees will be up to the residents, though a city agency will water the trees once a month for the first two years.

Squalls said her office is always available for any issues with the trees as well.

"Not only is planting trees a way to beautify our city and neighborhoods, but it also act as a form of green infrastructure," she said. "Trees help mitigate storm water runoff and reduce flooding in the city. They help cool our streets and our neighborhoods."

Residents can request a free tree on Detroit’s city website, or reach out to Squalls directly at 313-224-6391.

Briana Rice is a reporter/producer operating out of Detroit.
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