All articles by Caitlin Dunham
2017: Making Strides in Creating a Climate-Ready LA
Happy New Year!
From the TreePeople family to yours, we hope you had a wonderful holiday season and New Years! We are starting off 2018 with a tremendous feeling of gratitude due to all of the milestones we reached last year– all which not have been possible if it wasn’t for people like you!
Let’s take a look back at some of the top 2017 highlights:
PROTECTING AND RESTORING LA’s URBAN FOREST
Our Forestry Department and their amazing volunteers were busy bees in 2017!… Read more >>
10 Sustainable Gifts to Scratch off Your List
Have you started your holiday shopping yet? Not sure what to get that person who already has everything?
Well, look no further! We’ve selected some of our favorite climate-conscious gifts for everyone in your life. Sustainable gifts help create a better future for us and the lives of generations to come. Plus, who doesn’t want to be the envy of fellow tree-volutionaries?
For the Tree Person:
Gift giving got you stumped? Branch out and surprise loved ones in your life with a tree!… Read more >>
7 Tips for a Sustainable Thanksgiving
Fall is one of our favorite times of the year here in Yurt Village!
It’s a time for us to look back on the year to give thanks and reflect on all the hard work we’ve accomplished. It’s also a great opportunity to give thanks back to Mother Earth by celebrating Thanksgiving in a sustainable way!
Not sure where to start? Here are seven small, easy steps you and your family can take:
1. Ditch the flimsy single-use products this year.… Read more >>
I Am TreePeople: Victoria McHenry
“I feel that I am truly part of the team.”
When you volunteer with TreePeople, you do more than just put trees in the ground, you become part of a team that is helping save LA. Victoria McHenry, one of our amazing office volunteers, discovered this when she joined us earlier this year. Her roots take her back to the east coast, but her sense of adventure brought her out to turn a new leaf in LA.
Victoria was on the hunt for a more meaningful volunteer opportunity when she discovered TreePeople.… Read more >>
Why 2017 Was the Best Year Ever at Harvest Moon
We’re still celebrating our 30th annual An Evening Under the Harvest Moon gala and want to a extend a huge THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts to all who helped create such a magical evening!
Together we raised $705,000 to create a safer, more shaded and climate-ready future for all Angelenos. This was a huge success and it could not have happened without people like YOU.
“Our supporters see the value and urgency when they invest in TreePeople. It is more critical than ever to combat climate change, and TreePeople is on the frontlines,” TreePeople Founder and President, Andy Lipkis said.… Read more >>
Meet our Friend: Ms. Rain Barrel!
As temperatures begin to drop and the rainy season (hopefully) approaches, it’s time to prepare our climate-ready gardens to capture some of that precious rainwater!
For those of you unfamiliar with this exciting trend, we interviewed our friend, Ms. Rain Barrel to get you in the know!
So I hear that you’re part of this new fad – harvesting rainwater. Do you think it’s going to last?
People have been collecting rainwater for thousands of years all around the world so this is no new trend!… Read more >>
TreePeople Fellows Strive to Save Urban Forests
TreePeople is blessed with an array of amazing minds that come through Yurt Village, and this past summer, we had two bright young minds join our Policy & Research Department.
Erik Ndayishimiye and Matthew Stieg were brought on at the beginning of the summer through our fellowship program to work on issues surrounding LA’s urban forest. Both put their talent to work to help support our team offering their unique skills and backgrounds.
Erik hails from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies with a newly completed Master’s Degree in Environmental Management while Matthew is about to finish his senior year at the University of Michigan where he studies Mathematics and Statistics.… Read more >>
Photo Essay: TreePeople Soars High with Olympian Shaun White
TreePeople Joins the Air + Style Music and Sports Festival
Earlier this year, TreePeople teamed up with two-time snowboarding Olympic gold-medalist, Shaun White, his team at Air + Style, along with partners at Change the Course and Clif Green Notes for the Air + Style Music and Sports Festival in Exposition Park. Air + Style’s design doesn’t just attract top musicians and athletes, but also incorporates local art, community and culture.
“Getting big air requires big snow and snow needs water.”… Read more >>
Climate Conversations for Beginners
Massive wildfires engulfing the west coast and extreme hurricanes bludgeoning our neighbors in the east have left a lot us scared and wondering ‘Is this the future of our climate?’
Media doesn’t always help either. Alarming reports and frightening statistics can sometimes make you feel like all you can do is curl up in a corner and watch while Mother Earth gets her revenge for the abuse she’s endured.
We’re here to tell you that this is a completely normal way to feel.… Read more >>
Jim & Eileen: The “It” Couple of Once Upon a Canyon Night
Our Director of Park Operations, Jim Hardie and his wife, Eileen Knight have been the “it” couple around TreePeople for many years and contributed so much to the organization, but their real pride and joy has been our summer entertainment series, Once Upon a Canyon Night.
After 15 seasons of beautiful music, hysterical comedy and powerful theater, it only makes sense that the start of Once Upon a Canyon Night came from the love and passion of these two amazing people.… Read more >>
How LA Teens Save Trees from Summer Heat
The future of LA’s trees is in the hands of the next generation of Angelenos this summer.
After five years of historic drought and extreme heat, many of LA’s trees are thirsty and vulnerable. And without healthy trees shading campuses and communities, students suffer— the air they breathe isn’t clean, they don’t have access to green space to cool down and even have their health impacted.
Thankfully for the third summer in a row, TreePeople’s Youth Leadership Program has invited LA area high school students to take climate action and join in on our Summer Tree Care Internship.… Read more >>
6 Ways to Be Cool and Stay Cool this Summer
Many people assume that LA is a desert— it’s not. Actually, we are one of the few places on Earth that enjoy a Mediterranean climate. That’s one of the reasons we all love living here. Regions like ours enjoy mild winters and warm summers. But you may have noticed that summers are feeling extra hot lately!
With the ever-increasing threat of climate change, extreme heat is in our future. Even with the rains we saw over the winter, we still face unprecedented times.… Read more >>
I Am TreePeople: Paola Barcaccia
TreePeople is filled with amazing volunteers, but every so often, one of them shines bright against the crowd. That’s why we’re so grateful to have had the opportunity to sit down with one of our star community members, Paola Baraccia before she left the TreePeople family to move back home to Italy.
What do you do?
I teach Italian since I am originally from Italy for my day job. For fun, I enjoy spending my time outdoors and volunteering here at TreePeople.… Read more >>
Mulching: Less Mowing, More Growing!
It’s that time of year! Winter rains have come, the air is fresh, flowers are beginning to pop, and the days are warm and crisp. It’s the perfect time to look out over your yard and wonder:
“Is it time to finally ditch the turf and bring on the mulch?”
Not only does ditching turf mean less mowing, it also helps keep soil healthy and is a great way to cut back on water use. Sheet mulching is one way to remove it safely without poisonous chemicals!… Read more >>
Viewpoint School Teacher Talks Trash and Compost
A sustainable future is in reach, but to get there we must plant the seeds of change in our youth today. This is why TreePeople has always invested in schools.
LA is one of the most wasteful cities in the country. But we know we can be better– through empowering kids to take action on their campuses and at home with their families.
The Viewpoint School in Calabasas is an example of putting this thought into action. Here, we teamed up with an amazing science teacher, Mr.… Read more >>
UP @ Coldwater Canyon Park
When was the last time you took a walk through nature to restore balance and reconnect with your purpose in life?
TreePeople’s 45-acre Coldwater Canyon Park perched atop the Santa Monica Mountains offers trails and breathtaking panoramas the San Fernando Valley and beyond to the Verdugo Mountains that cradle it. Thousands of people walk our park every year, and it is the pride and joy of our organization.
We’ve been the caretakers of this living laboratory for more than 40 years.… Read more >>
I am TreePeople: Mat Steury
The TreePeople staff is filled with amazing individuals — like Mat Steury.
Mat is TreePeople’s all around handyman and IT specialist. Hailing from Auburn, Indiana, Mat and his wonderful wife, Rachel, followed the California sun to TreePeople. The two of them make one dynamic duo!
Mat grew up building and renovating homes with his dad, who learned the skill from his Amish uncles. “I’m basically the Amish IT guy” Mat jokes. It’s no lie either. Whether it’s keeping our computer system humming or renovating the TreePeople kitchen with Rachel– Mat does it all.… Read more >>
Three Reasons to Prune!
Trees are amazing living machines– they give us shade, beauty, and food! Some can live for hundreds of years. With a little bit of knowledge, care, and pruning, these trees can provide an abundance of benefits to us and the environment, and enable them to live to their full potential.
Understanding basic pruning principles and proper pruning cuts are helpful in caring for any tree. Remember, pruning, even though beneficial, is wounding the tree. So, be sure to have a reason for each cut that you make.… Read more >>
A Look Back at 2016’s Highlights
Happy New Year!
At the dawn of this new year, we reflect on 2016 and give thanks to our amazing TreePeople community that – despite a tough drought and an even tougher year in politics – banned together to plant thousands of trees and pass climate-conscience policies.
Here’s 2016 by the numbers …
- 3,700+ volunteers joined us in 2016
- 1,500+ new trees were planted and 4,811+ trees were saved from the drought
- We reforested the Bette Davis Picnic area near Griffith Park along with many other LA County locations.
4 Climate-Conscious Gifts to Scratch off Your List
Down to the last minute for your holiday shopping? Not sure what to get that person who already has everything?
Look no further! Here are some of our favorite beautiful, practical, and climate-conscious gifts for home!
Sustainable gifts help create a better future for us and the lives of generations to come. Plus, who doesn’t want to be the envy of their neighborhood? Be a movement trendsetter!
Here are four unique gift ideas to inspire the climate-fighter in everyone this holiday season:
Rain chains are a beautiful addition to any garden to slow, sink and spread those precious drops back into the ground or a rain tank.… Read more >>
I am TreePeople: Isabel Zavian
“Every person holds the power to make a positive impact in their community.” -Isabel Zavian.
Isabel is a changemaker.
Born and raised in the LA area, Isabel Zavian grew up hiking our park’s trails.
Seeing the effects the drought had on our park’s stressed trees, she felt moved to action.
Once during a stay at summer camp in Lake Arrowhead, she saw that many of her fellow campers weren’t conserving water. It sparked a passion in her to raise awareness to youth just like her to make a difference.… Read more >>
TreePeople and NRDC: Rain to the Rescue
Though the national election has left us concerned about our climate future, the environment was a clear winner in LA with the passing of Measures M and Measure A providing expanded public transportation and safe park spaces for Angelenos.
LA is taking steps in the right direction to adapt and is supporting the right policies, but some people are asking, “What else can be done?”
TreePeople and NRDC Release Groundbreaking Water Policy Brief
In the face of ongoing drought and climate change impacts, TreePeople partnered with the National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) to co-author an issue brief sharing the importance of capturing stormwater to increase California’s local water supply.… Read more >>
Designing Social Change
“We come to plant trees
and capture the rain because a healthy LA
is ours to attain.”
– Jolly de Guzman
Earlier this year, our Volunteer Manager, Peter Roquemore had an idea for our annual Volunteer Celebration. He wanted to give an extra special thank you to our most dedicated community who shows up every weekend to plant and care for trees across the County. So he organized a contest for a new t-shirt design to give our brightest stars that day as a show of our appreciation.… Read more >>
Peggy Kelley Turns TreePeople Tree Dedications Into Timeless Celebrations
We sat down with event planner, Peggy Kelley of Timeless Celebrations who has been gifting TreePeople Tree Dedications for a nearly a decade. With every event or marriage her business plans, she gives a TreePeople Tree Dedication as a thank you gift to her clients. Discover why she decided to honor her clients with the gift of trees.
How and when did you first become involved with TreePeople?
I became involved with TreePeople when I married an arborist 10 years ago.… Read more >>
What is the Big Deal About Natives?
LA really is a special place, and so is its ecology. Our region’s Mediterranean climate brings dry, hot summers and cool, wet winters. This unique climate and landscape is what creates the special conditions that support our city’s animal and plant biodiversity.
Native plants use anywhere from 30 to 90 percent less water than other non-native plant species, and also provide animals with a habitat to call home. Our native plants are beautiful, resilient and useful, and we should celebrate them!… Read more >>
I Am TreePeople: Zayda Ortiz
Intern life: for years, coffee runs and evil bosses were what came to mind. While that would make for a good screenplay, the average life of an intern was the complete opposite of that cliché scene during my summer here at TreePeople.
Instead of a standard office, the Forestry yurt is home to TreePeople’s passionate staff who engage with the community by teaching them about the importance of planting and caring for trees. Watching the other volunteers dig into making a difference for LA by greening its streets, schools, parks and neighborhoods woke something up in me– seeing the team in action gave me a glimpse of the kind of person I want to be.… Read more >>