Community Tree Walks

Walking and sharing stories about Boston's urban forest

Learning about Boston’s urban forests with Community Tree Walks

Speak for the Trees, Boston in partnership with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), three partner organizations and three community groups, hosted two tree walks in three Boston neighborhoods: Dorchester, Mattapan and East Boston. These walks, designed by local residents, incorporated stories and scientific information as a way to increase awareness and dialogue surrounding inequitable tree canopy cover and its implications on the health of residents living in low-canopied communities.

The Goal

The goal of these tree walks was to learn from residents about their relationships to trees and provide lessons to residents about the relationship between trees and the environment. The project was developed over 5 phases. Each phase was guided by a community-centered process which focused on storytelling, as well as learning about environmental factors that affect trees’ health and well being. The end product resulted in two community walks in three different neighborhoods, for a total of six community walks.

Our Partners

Community Partners:

Project Partners:


The Tree Walks

The six groups invited community members to join on a stroll through their neighborhoods, taking the time to talk about and appreciate the diversity of trees that often go unnoticed. During our tree walks, participants identified various tree species, exchanged tree-related stories, made some fun discoveries and, above all, built community.

Interactive Tree Walks Maps

Click a neighborhood below for a map of the tree walks. Using these maps. you can follow the tree walks created by community members in East Boston, Dorchester, and Mattapan.

Tree Walks In The News

The idea of ‘tree equity’ is taking root

A man with a peppered beard, glasses and a baseball cap looks off to the side on a sunny day. A tree is glimmering in the sunlight in the background.

Jerel Ferguson with the advocacy group Speak for the Trees led a recent “tree walk” through Dorchester. Craig LeMoult GBH News

WATCH: ‘Trees in Boston: Who gets more and why it matters’

Sharing Tree Stories

A bit about tree stories here and the goal

Next Steps

As a final event, community members and partner organizations joined to to share and celebrate. This event will highlight the lessons learned during the tree walks, providing future partnerships for residents to develop and share more walks, increase outreach and education, and further the goal of growing Boston’s tree canopy.

Get Involved in Your Community!

*PLEASE NOTE: To qualify for our NeighborWoods program, all homeowners are required to sign a 2-year Tree Maintenance Agreement to care for and water the tree. If you are not the homeowner you will need to get permission and a signed maintenance agreement from the owner.

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