Tree Fredericksburg will be giving out 200+ free three-gallon trees on Saturday, October 29 from 9 a.m. until noon at Powhatan Park, across Cowan Boulevard from Hugh Mercer Elementary School in Fredericksburg.

All Fredericksburg residents are eligible for the tree giveaway, made possible through a grant from CSX and the Arbor Day Foundation’s Alliance for Community Trees program. County residents are welcome to send in request forms and be put on a waiting list for any trees left over.

Residents can request their trees in advance by filling out and returning a request form (see below) or by showing up at Powhatan Park if there are any trees not requested in advance of the giveaway. The limit is two trees per city residence. If you’re not able to pick up your trees on Saturday, Oct. 29, you can come the next day, Sunday, Oct. 30 from 1-3 p.m. to get them.

Volunteers in Tree Fredericksburg’s Tree Steward program will provide instruction on proper planting and tree care at Powhatan Park. For $20 a tree, Tree Fredericksburg can also deliver and plant the trees.

Here are the varieties of trees we have left, and the number (updated each day):

10 Red Maples

4 Red Buds

4 Yellowwoods

2 White Oaks

Click here for more information about  the trees:


And here’s that request form:








OldMillPark126Fredericksburg Mayor Mary Katherine Greenlaw helped us with tree planting last year, and now it’s your turn. Check out Tree Fredericksburg’s FALL 2016 TREE PLANTING SCHEDULE:  

Saturday, Oct. 1, Hanson Avenue, 9-noon. (305 Hanson Ave., corner of Hanson Avenue and Woodford Street)
Saturday, Oct. 8, Elm Street, 9-noon (parking lot on the corner of Germania and Charles streets)
Saturday, Oct. 15, Dorothy Hart Community Center, 9-noon (corner of Charles and Pitt streets)
Saturday, Oct. 22, Fall Hill Avenue, 9-noon (3312 Fall Hill Ave., between Friends of the Rappahannock and the top of the hill)

Email Tree Fredericksburg Development Director Steve Watkins at if you or your group or business would like to volunteer. We’ll be planting 50 trees on each of the first three Saturdays, and 110 trees at Fall Hill on the 22nd.

The Tuesday before each planting, several volunteers will be working with Tree Fredericksburg staff to prepare the trees—washing root balls—at the little park on Powhatan Street, across from Hugh Mercer Elementary. Let us know if you’d like to volunteer to help with that as well.

Thanks, Fredericksburg! We’re planted more than 5,000 trees over the past several years. Our target is 5,000 more.


Jump Start LogoThanks to a grant from the City of Fredericksburg’s Economic Development Authority JumpStart! program, Tree Fredericksburg planted 65 new trees–35 Crepe Myrtles, and 30 small trees (Redbuds, Cherries, etc.) to fit under all the overhead wires–along Lafayette Boulevard in celebration of Earth Day, 2016. The great folks at Marstel-Day were our volunteer workers for the plantings, and did a fantastic job–as always! Here are a couple of AFTER (and three BEFORE) photos of Lafayette.


Lafayette After-03 (1)


Lafayette After-01 (1)Lafayette Before 3

Lafayette Before 3

Lafayette Before 1


Heritage Trail (1)volunteers planting heritage trail (1)IMG_0188 (2)


When the city needed 175 trees planted along the Heritage Trail, they called in Tree Fredericksburg. Here’s what the trail looked like before the planting (top), then during the planting with more than 50 volunteers hard at work (center), and now today (bottom). In the future, the three-mile walking, running, and biking trail will have plenty of much-needed shade. Help us help these canopy trees thrive by donating what you can to Tree Fredericksburg during the 24-hour Community Give. We’re in desperate need of a new truck! Click HERE on May 3 to make your donation.



Last year, Tree Fredericksburg planted 150 trees in Dixon Park. The 40 volunteers who did all the work came from George Mason University and planted those trees in celebration of their friend’s 21st birthday. They all wrote birthday wishes and buried them under the roots when they planted the trees. A number of the volunteers were from Thailand and had never used a shovel. They wore traditional silk robes with silk shoes, and they dug their hearts out. They plan to come visit the trees after five years to celebrate their friendship. Every tree we plant has a story. Help us keep these stories–and these trees–alive. Next Tuesday, May 3, please contribute what you can to support Tree Fredericksburg (and help us buy the new truck we need to water all these new trees!) during the Community Give.



FIVE THOUSAND ONE HUNDRED SIXTY EIGHT. That’s the number of trees we’ve planted in Fredericksburg over the past seven years. Help us keep planting–and watering, and taking proper care of–all these wonderful trees. To do that we need a new truck. Our current one has more than 250,000 miles on it. You can pitch in to help on May 3 by donating a penny a tree–$51.68 (or whatever you can)–during the Community Give.




The sad news is a great many of them, especially the Bradford Pears, were dead or dying—or the wrong size for the narrow spaces for planting, or too close to one another, or too close to where car doors open in parking spaces. So they had to come down.

The happy news is that they’re all being replaced this spring, over the next couple of weeks. New trees are being placed at the parking lines so the trees are 22 feet apart and there is no conflict with those car doors. The species that the city is planting are all narrow and only get 15 feet wide and about 35 feet tall. This prevents them from hitting buildings and causing damage. The trees are very upright and allow visibility of the retail establishments and restaurants while giving the beauty and benefits of trees in our downtown.

The species that are being planted are Everclear Elms, Musashino  Zelkovas, and Princeton Sentry Gingkoes. This will create a narrow upright canopy along our streets, helping keep our sidewalks cool, reduce the noise of traffic, and create a welcoming environment for visitors to our downtown. Studies have shown that trees in retail districts increase sales because visitors are more likely to linger and walk in a shady tree environment.

The city will also be adding rubberized mulch to the tree wells to make the walking experience safer for our visitors.


F250 Angle View

 Our trees are in desperate need of a new truck. Our current one, donated by Carl and Anne Little several years ago, is on its last legs, held up with chewing gum and bailing wire (and a recent $4,000 engine overhaul that’s a temporary fix). Two donors–Atlantic Builders and a family that would like to donate anonymously–have already pledged a total of $3,000 in matching funds through the May 3 Community Give, which will get us one-tenth of the way to our goal of buying this $30,000 relatively new, used Ford F-250, which we need for hauling around our heavy water tank for watering trees, and to pull a trailer loaded with new trees for delivery to planting areas. Please give what you can on May 3–and by donating on that day, you’ll help put us in a position to raise even more through incentive prizes during the Community Give!


If you saw the front page of the Free Lance-Star on Tuesday, Jan. 5, you know about the forum regarding the trees on Washington Avenue Mall.  A group of people has initiated a petition asking for the removal of all the trees that have been planted on the center area of the mall on Washington Avenue, most of which were planted over the past several years by Tree Fredericksburg volunteers, with approval from the city.

The petitioners believe that the trees block the view of their houses, that the trees will distract from the monuments, and that Washington Avenue Mall should be an open grassland without trees. We obviously disagree, and feel that the right trees appropriately planted—approximately the same number of trees as were on the mall back in 1980—will enhance the beauty of the mall, while also preserving plenty of green space and the important sightlines for visitors and residents alike.

The forum will be held by the City of Fredericksburg on Monday, Jan. 25 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Dorothy Hart Center.  At the forum there will be a 15 minute presentation by the City and also a 15 minute presentation by the folks who drafted the petition.  After the presentations, public comments will be allowed (2 minutes each).

You’re welcome to attend the meeting and voice your opinion on this issue, and if you can’t attend, there will be an opportunity to post comments online regarding the trees.  If you wish to sign up in advance to speak at the meeting, send an email to Dave King, assistant director of public works, at, and ask to be put on the speakers list for the forum.  It is important that you do this quickly.  There will only be a limited number of speakers allowed.

If you do not live in the City, pleas pass this email on to your friends who do.  If you work, shop or eat in the City, please comment as a person who brings economic benefit to our city. And if you have any questions, feel free to email us at



Some drunks did this to three trees on Kenmore Avenue

Some drunks did this to three trees on Kenmore Avenue

Poor soil, not enough rain, angry drunks breaking tree limbs, BEAVERS! Tree Fredericksburg has planted nearly 5,000 trees in the City of Fredericksburg over the past seven years, and we have plans to plant another 5,000 to increase the city’s tree canopy by 5 percent over the next seven years. But planting trees also means taking proper care of them—and that takes money. Which is where you come in.

Here at year’s end, consider a donation to Tree Fredericksburg to help us combat lousy soil with proper mulching, not enough rain with regular watering, and beavers with protective fencing. (Unfortunately there’s not much we can do about those angry drunks breaking off tree limbs—or sometimes worse—except spread the word that the community won’t tolerate that sort of thing.)

The City of Fredericksburg and various grants cover most of the cost of the trees themselves, and the initial plantings, and the equipment we need to get the trees properly in the ground. It’s up to the rest of us to make sure our trees not only survive, but also thrive, and provide everybody who lives here with a higher quality of life. Trees soak up air pollution and storm water runoff. They provide shade and lower utility bills. They increase property values–and they’re nice to look at.

As we gear up for our spring and fall plantings in 2016, take a look at the 5,000 trees Tree Fredericksburg’s hundreds of volunteers have planted over these past seven years, then take a look at your checkbook and consider an end of the year gift to help us continue to raise them right.

You can access our PAYPAL ACCOUNT and make a donation, or if you’d prefer, you can mail a check to Tree Fredericksburg, 726 William St., Fredericksburg, VA 22401. Tree Fred is a 501(c)3 nonprofit.

Thanks for thinking of Tree Fredericksburg, and especially thanks for being a friend to trees.