Emerald Necklace Conservancy & Fenway Garden Society Partner to Protect Trees, Educate Public

The Emerald Necklace Conservancy, at the request of the Fenway Garden Society (FGS) and in consultation with the City of Boston, has contracted Maltby & Company to complete tree work in the Fenway Victory Gardens. The work is helping to address tree health and safety concerns in the Victory Gardens area and consists of pruning and other tree maintenance on approximately 50 trees, including lindens, oaks and maples.

The Fenway Victory Gardens’ mature tree canopy provides the Emerald Necklace parks and greater Boston with valuable animal habitat, stormwater absorption, mitigation of the city’s heat island effect, shade and other benefits. The Conservancy, FGS and City of Boston Arborists have worked in close partnership to align this tree work with the Conservancy’s Emerald Necklace Tree Inventory, Conditions Assessment and Master Plan and the Olmsted Tree Society (OTS), which was founded in 2013 as the 10th Anniversary project of the Conservancy’s annual Party in the Park. OTS’s mission is to preserve and maintain the Emerald Necklace tree canopy and the benefits it brings to the region.

“The Emerald Necklace’s tree canopy is one of the best tools Boston has to protect itself against climate change and extreme weather,” said Conservancy Field Operations Manager and ISA Certified Arborist Ellen Arnstein. “We’re thrilled to work with the Fenway Garden Society, Maltby & Company and the City of Boston to maintain and improve the health of this valuable resource.”

The tree work also provides a valuable opportunity to educate the Fenway Victory Gardens’ many stakeholders—including gardeners, park visitors and neighborhood residents—on how to prune trees and the importance of pruning and tree care.

“Ellen [Arnstein] has been extremely helpful to the Fenway Garden Society’s Tree Committee and the community regarding tree care and the importance of keeping trees healthy,” said Elizabeth Bertolozzi, President of the Fenway Garden Society. “Yes, pruning helps trees look better, but, done right, it also benefits their health.”

“Our core mission in the Victory Gardens is teaching members and visitors about gardening, and our underlying tenet is stewardship of this unique space in the Back Bay Fens,” continued Bertolozzi. “When we talk about pollinators and their place in a healthy ecosystem, most people think about bees and other insects, but birds and bats are also important pollinators—and they need healthy trees to provide food, shelter and nesting sites. Partnering with the Emerald Necklace Conservancy has been a great opportunity to demonstrate to our stakeholders the important link between tree health and a healthy ecosystem in the Gardens.”

Marie Fukuda and Susan Povak, co-chairs of the FGS Tree Committee, added: “We are extremely grateful to the Boston Parks and Recreation Department and the Emerald Necklace Conservancy for responding to our call for help. Without their support and the expertise of Maltby, we could not provide needed care to the trees in our historic community gardens and parkland. We look forward to building on our goals for tree health and park improvements in the Back Bay Fens.”

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