You may notice a lot of new trees like this one on North Beacon Hill. These are two of the 300 or so trees that the Seattle Department of Transportation is planting along some of our neighborhood streets this month through the SDOT Community Tree program.
The trees pictured here, on 17th Avenue South, are Paperbark Maples, which are known for their decorative peeling red bark and for spectacular autumn colors. Other trees offered to the neighborhood included Serviceberry trees and American Hornbeams.
Would I please shut up with the bike stuff!? Â Why, yes I will. Â Let’s talk about street trees!
As noted in this previous post, Beacon BIKES has been working with SDOT to plant trees along our planned Neighborhood Greenway routes. Â We had a very successful effort last fall planting 70 trees along 18th Avenue South. Â Now we are working with SDOT to plant 300 more trees this March. Â The City plants the trees, waters them for three years, and prunes for the life of the trees. Â Home owners get to pick among three tree types or choose no tree at all. Â It is called the SDOT Community Tree program, and you can find out more about itÂ here.
If you have questions about the program email me or come to the next North Beacon Hill Council meeting (March 6th, 6:30-8:00 pm, Beacon Hill Library) where we will be presenting a little more info. Â The planting is scheduled for mid- to late March and we will be planning a community tree planting day to plant a few by hand in the same time frame. SDOT has already marked some of the proposed planting locations; you can check out the flags along 14th Ave S to get a feel for how this program can reallyÂ improveÂ a street for all users.
If you live north of Lucile and would like a tree or two planted in your planting strip let me know and I will forward it to the City. Â If you would like a tree for your yard instead of your planting strip, there is another great City program called TreesÂ forÂ Neighborhoods which has been posted about previously here, with more up-to-date info here.
The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is hosting a meeting tonight at Van Asselt Community Center to get your feedback about street trees and a revision of the street tree ordinance, which was last revised in 1961. The new revision is intended to improve protection and preservation of street trees. Street trees are defined as any trees growing in any city right-of-way.
The draft ordinance may be read here, and addresses tree protection and preservation, restrictions on tree removal, requirements for replacement trees, requirements for private tree companies, and penalties for violations of the ordinance.
Tonight’s meeting is at Van Asselt Community Center on South Beacon Hill, 2820 S. Myrtle Street, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The Van Asselt meeting is one of five community meetings. The first was held Monday night at Highpoint Community Center and three further meetings are also scheduled for Miller Community Center, Meadowbrook Community Center, and Ballard Community Center.
A few events this weekend (and Monday) we would like to remind you of:
There’s a rummage sale in the St. George School Hall on Saturday and Sunday. The folks from St. George tell us that proceeds will help to support the St. George Grade 8 educational trip to Alaska and Victoria, B.C.
Beacon BIKES will be meeting on Monday evening at 6:30 pm at the Beacon Hill Library, 2821 Beacon Avenue South. If you want to plan ahead, their next meeting is scheduled for November 15, same place and time.
Plant and Art Sale at ART’s on Beacon: Today through Saturday, a sale of plants, collectibles, art and antiques at ART’s (we wrote about ART’s in February). The sale runs from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm each day through Saturday. ART’s is located at 4951 13th Avenue South.
Slightly off the Hill in Rainier Beach, Mayor McGinn is hosting a public forum tonight, billed as “an opportunity for residents and business owners to discuss their concerns directly with city leaders.” Police Chief John Diaz will be there too, as will representatives from other city departments. They’ve only scheduled 90 minutes, though—will that be time enough for everyone to gripe? Find out at 6:30 pm at Rainier Beach Community Center, 8825 Rainier Avenue South.
Friday, October 1, the Beacon Merchants Association will meet at Baja Bistro, 2414 Beacon Avenue South. On the agenda this month: finalizing bylaws, and approving the board trainer and the date for board training. The group asks, “Please come, give us your input, and help Beacon Hill business grow strong!”
Saturday the Rainier Valley Co-op Preschool, which is actually up on the Hill at 1720 South Forest Street (near the Library), is holding their Fall Festival and Rummage Sale from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm. There will be a DJ Dance Party for kids, a bike parade, a bake sale, a treasure hunt, face painting, and more merriment.
Unfortunately, the Kai-Lan story time which was scheduled for the Beacon Hill Library on Saturday afternoon has been cancelled.
Don’t forget ROCKiT space has an Open Mic on the first and third Saturdays of each month.
El Centro de la Raza is hosting “A Call to Action for Immigration Reform,” on Wednesday, November 18 at 5:00 pm, including a virtual town hall with Representative Luis Gutierrez to discuss the principles of progressive immigration reform. The call in English will be at 5:00 pm, and in Spanish at 6:00 pm. El Centro de la Raza is located at 2524 16th Avenue South, and this event is in room 310. For more information, call 206-957-4605.
Another reminder: Thursday, November 19, is the day of the Van Asselt playground building project. Volunteers will help build the playground, along with MLS soccer players and representatives from Home Depot and KaBOOM! The MLS players are participating through MLS W.O.R.K.S., the league’s community outreach program, as part of the festivities building up to the MLS Cup next weekend at Qwest Field.
You might have noticed that Beacon Hill is one of the neighborhoods with the lowest amount of tree canopy cover in Seattle. Only 19% of the residential property on the Hill has tree cover. In the 1970s, Seattle had 40% tree cover, but today, the city with “the hills the greenest green” only has a shockingly low 23% tree cover. The tree canopy went away quickly, and it will take more time to bring it back, but the city has a goal of reaching 30% tree cover by 2037.
EarthCorps and the City of Seattle are combining forces to provide free trees to residents of Beacon Hill, along with Georgetown, West Seattle Junction/Genesee Hill, and Westwood/Roxhill, all of which have a low amount of tree canopy.
Residents of these neighborhoods can apply for free trees for their planting strips and property. Trees will be available for pick up in early December. Tree recipients will be able to attend a workshop on tree planting and care, and will receive tree watering bags in the spring.
Once upon a time, Beacon Hill was covered with a green forest. You can contribute to making it green again through the Neighborhood Matching Fund Tree Fund. This project provides free trees to neighborhood groups to plant in planting strips on residential streets. Yes, free! Groups of five or more households on a street can get together to apply for the trees. The deadline is August 21; here is the application. This year, Tree Fund participants who plant neighborhood street trees in a group can also select one fruit tree per household to plant on their private properties.
Speaking of fruit trees, the City Fruit project at cityfruit.org has a calendar project in the works, and they are looking for photos related to growing urban fruit, to feature in the 2010 calendar. Photos might show urban orchards, harvesting, jam, bugs, etc. The deadline is September 1, and photos should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lastly, today at 2pm, the City Council will discuss a resolution to prioritize the protection of Seattle’s tree canopy, and legislation to create an Urban Forestry commission which will advise the Mayor and Council on urban forestry issues. If you have an opinion on the matter, you may want to call the council or the mayor this morning.