Tree planting begins in Harrison, Brackenridge

Staff with the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy started planting nearly 70 trees in Harrison and Brackenridge on Wednesday.

Of the 67 trees, about 50 are going in the public right of way along Broadview Boulevard in Harrison. The rest are in a few other locations throughout Brackenridge, including in Memorial Park, according to conservancy forester Brian Crooks.

The township and borough applied for trees separately from TreeVitalize Pittsburgh, a program Crooks said has been around since 2008 with the goal of increasing the tree canopy in urban areas. Plantings are done in the spring and fall.

Because Harrison and Brackenridge are neighbors, “it makes sense to throw all the trees on one delivery,” Crooks said.

Harrison Commissioner Chuck Dizard said it was a special day for the township and those who value trees.

“This is just going to make a dramatic impact on the streetscape of Freeport Road and Broadview Boulevard,” he said.

He said the trees come at no cost to the township; the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy is footing the bill.

Conservancy staff was handling the planting. Because of covid, no community volunteers were involved, as they have been in the past, Crooks said.

The trees are of about a dozen species, Crooks said.

About 15 trees were planted Wednesday. Crooks said they’ll continue planting in Harrison on Thursday and Monday, and expect to get to Brackenridge on Tuesday.

Including one prior planting and what will go in next week, Crooks said the conservancy has planted 34 trees in Brackenridge.

Through the conservancy program, about 180 trees have been planted in Harrison over the past five years, Dizard said.

Dizard said another 60 trees are due to be planted in the fall along Federal Street by an ATI parking lot in the Natrona neighborhood.

“Hopefully, we’ll be able to have volunteers for that,” Dizard said.

Tarentum hosting tree giveaway

While the conservancy is planting trees in public spaces in Harrison and Brackenridge, trees are available for Tarentum residents to plant on their own properties.

Free trees are scheduled to be distributed by the borough’s Recreation Board and Tree Pittsburgh from 10 a.m. to noon April 10 at the Tarentum Marina. Residents are required to register online or by calling 412-781-8733.

About 200 trees will be available. Registration will open to those outside Tarentum on April 1 if any trees remain available.

Brian C. Rittmeyer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Brian at 724-226-4701, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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Lifestyles | Local | Valley News Dispatch

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