Request a tree for fall planting
Heights Tree People, a volunteer organization working to rebuild the tree canopy in Cleveland Heights and University Heights, encourages residents to make requests for fall trees now. With its cool, moist weather, fall is a perfect time of year to plant trees. Fall tree-planting runs from the end of September through Thanksgiving, and Heights Tree People will plant trees for free in the front yards of homes in both cities.
Trees that were planted when Heights neighborhoods were built 100 years ago are dying and being removed. From 2013 to 2019, Cleveland Heights lost 14 percent of its tree canopy, and University Heights lost 26 percent. Heights Tree People makes it easy to plant new trees, to remain cities of trees.
People are happier and healthier when they live with trees. With trees, stress levels go down, as do stress-related diseases, including heart attacks, strokes, anxiety and depression. Studies have shown that crime, including domestic violence, is lower in neighborhoods with good tree canopies. Neighborhoods are more stable, and property values increase where there are plenty of trees. Trees cool houses and clean the air, so they reduce respiratory diseases. When trees are lost, so are their benefits, which are essential to the well-being of a community.
City planners and arborists look at tree canopies citywide. But, really, increasing the tree canopy requires many individuals acting in concert to plant trees in their yards or tree lawns. Because the majority of land in any municipality is private property, individual property owners acting together can significantly increase the tree canopy.
If we all do our part—whether planting a front-yard tree, requesting a tree-lawn tree from the city, or encouraging friends and neighbors to take advantage of these free resources—the result will be a stronger, healthier and more attractive community that is more resilient for all.
If you would like to host a new tree, request a free front-yard tree from Heights Tree People by visiting www.heightstreepeople.com, or sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. To request a tree-lawn tree, call 216-601-3717 in Cleveland Heights, or 216-932-8531 in University Heights.
Laura Marks is a member of Heights Tree People.