ATAG stands up for trees

(July 14, 2018)

Testifying to the Arlington County Board — 

Testifying to Arlington County Board

Testifying to the Arlington County Board

Testifying to Arlington County Board

Testifying to the Arlington County Board

Being interviewed by an “Arlington Connection” reporter — 

ATAG speaking with an "Arlington Connection reporter

ATAG speaking with an “Arlington Connection reporter

The Dawn Redwood we’re trying to save:

The Champion Dawn Redwood

The Champion Dawn Redwood


Charlie Clark, Our Man in Arlington:  Arlington faces tough choices between money and environmentalism (July 18, 2018)



Arlington Connection:  Battling for the Dawn Redwood (July 18, 2018)


Local  Arlington residents speak out against idea of cutting down 114-foot Redwood tree (July 11, 2018) 


WUSA9 TV:  114-foot tall redwood tree may be cut down in Arlington, sparking controversy

(July 7, 2018)



Arlington board takes flak on multiple fronts from tree activists (July 17, 2018)

Comment on this article:  There are plenty of things the board could do to encourage the preservation of trees, if it were so motivated. Here are but a few:

Despite lingering concerns among some, Upton Hill park plan moves forward (July 10, 2018)



Arlington Department of Environmental Services (July 2, 2018): 

Arlington’s impervious surfaces increasing year by year; now at estimated 45% compared to estimated 40% in 2001.

NPR All Things Considered:  How Phoenix Is Trying To Keep People Cool As Temperatures Rise

(July 9, 2018)

“But most of all . . . the city needs a lot more trees.”

Key points:

[David] Hondula [Arizona State University professor] attributes about half of this to climate change and the rest to the built environment. Those parking lots and wide roads, strip malls and air conditioners all keep the city hotter, what’s called the urban heat island effect, especially overnight.

But most of all, Hondula says, the city needs a lot more trees.

It’s a pressing problem in low-income and largely Hispanic neighborhoods that tend to be the hottest. 


ATAG asks Urban Forestry Commission to report to residents on tree loss at Wakefield HS (June 28, 2018)

We are looking forward to the UFC report on this tree loss, to include lessons learned so this does not happen again.

Upcoming Audubon Naturalist Society classes: Introduction to Stream Science (June 2018)

Beautiful mature trees destroyed in Lyon Park (May 2018)

Mature trees destroyed in Williamsburg neighborhood (May 2018)


ATAG is now a member of the Arlington County Civic Federation – as of May 1, 2018! See the May 2018 CivFed Newsletter.

Free — Large trees planted in your yard.  

Check out the Arlington Tree Canopy Fund.

Arlington County Urban Tree Canopy Assessment(December 2017) 

Although the County is interpreting and publicizing the Assessment as showing that our urban forest has grown one percent since 2011 in the face of continuing population growth and development, this conclusion is not justified by the Assessment itself.  For one thing, one percent is within the Assessment’s margin of error.  For another, the 2017 and 2011 studies used different methodologies, so precise comparisons are not warranted.

The real headline is that many neighborhoods have suffered significant tree losses since the last report in 2011. See the map at page 10 of the 2017 Assessment:

Tree canopy losses

Tree canopy losses

This is the message that matches what we are seeing in our neighborhoods as more and more trees are taken down.

The situation is even worse when compared to the 2008 report.

See additional responses to the Tree Canopy Assessment:

ATAG Media release concerning tree canopy assessment (April 12, 2018)

Natasha Atkins, Tree canopy report raises more questions than it answers (February 22, 2018)

Suzanne Smith Sundburg, Understanding Arlington’s 2017 Urban Tree Canopy Assessment

University of Vermont review of Tree Canopy Assessment (March 27, 2018)

Dispute over Arlington tree canopy heats up (April 23, 2018)

In midst of brouhaha, more Arlington trees designated ‘notable’ (April 26, 2018)

The problem with the County’s tree canopy report (April 28, 2018)


Pennsylvania could plant over 10 million trees in the next seven years for cleaner water and air


Friends of Aurora Highlands Parks identify a pattern of County errors that  consistently overestimated demand for recreational fields and narrowed supply, despite overwhelming resident feedback placing much higher priorities on other needs and park uses like trails and natural and open parkland.

March 2018 newsletter

April 2018 newsletter

‘Friends of Upton Hill’ Protest Park Paving Plans With New Website (April 3, 2018)


Non-Native Plants Removed Near Quincy Park  (March 29, 2018)


Despite some neighborly concerns, Upton Hill park project moving forward (March 20, 2018)

See also:  Friends of UH_Preserve the Park at Upton Hill_3-21-2018

and Friends of Upton Hill website

and Upton Hill Regional Park segment on the Sustainable Scoop

“Please Save Me” tree destroyed  (March 5, 2018)

On about March 1 a builder destroyed the beautiful magnolia tree noted below (December 15, 2017) that had worn a sign asking that it be spared.  Also destroyed was another wonderful tree in the back yard.  The entire home has now been bulldozed.

View from Williamsburg Blvd after trees destroyed

View from Williamsburg Blvd after trees destroyed

"Please Save Me" magnolia tree destroyed

“Please Save Me” magnolia tree destroyed

View of front yard after trees destroyed.

View of front yard after trees destroyed.


Charlie Clark article on the Arlington tree canopy (Falls Church News-Press February 6, 2018)

Eli Tucker article on Arlington’s tree canopy and how to preserve it (ARLnow February 6, 2018)


The Secret To Staying Happy Is Getting Whatever Exposure To Nature You Can Get (Fast Company February February 6, 2018)

Arlington Tree Action Group (ATAG) pleads for builder to save beautiful trees on Williamsburg Blvd (December 15, 2017) 

After we saw a poignant plea to save a possibly endangered tree — 

Please Save Me

Please Save Me

ATAG sent a letter to the responsible party requesting the tree be saved:

December 15, 2017

Sunil Saxena

20023 Belmont Station Drive

Ashburn, VA 20147-000

Dear Mr. Saxena,

On behalf of the Arlington Tree Action Group, a group of residents promoting the economic, health and other benefits of trees, we are writing to draw attention to trees we hope your company will save while developing the lot at 6255 Williamsburg Boulevard.

As you know, trees have tangible economic, health, and environmental benefits, as underscored again in recent research by Arlington County: It is also calculated that a mature tree adds 10K in property value.

In particular, please work to save the magnificent magnolia in the front corner of the property, on which an anonymous citizen posted a poignant sign: “Please Save Me.” By doing just that, and saving the small tree in the back corner, your company can be seen as:

–responsive to residents;

–understanding of the myriad benefits of mature trees;

–a trendsetter in building a community that seeks a future that is sustainable.

ATAG, web site, is developing an award for builders who preserve and care for trees.

One small act can have big returns.

Thank you for your consideration; we look forward to hearing from you.


Kit Norland           Bill Roos

Margie Bell           Angela Dickey

Mary Glass           Eric Ackerman      Natasha Atkins

Arlington Tree Action Group (ATAG)

Other views of the property:

At-risk trees, front and back yards

At-risk trees, front and back yards


At-risk property

At-risk property


Arlington Tree Action Group (ATAG) held a very successful event to rally support for preserving and growing Arlington’s urban forest.  (November 15, 2017)

See here for more information.

D.C. To Plant 100 New Trees A Day (October 12, 2017)


Arlington Tree Action Group (ATAG) spreads the tree message at

Marymount Farmers Market Saturday, September 9, 2017

ATAG volunteer explaining Donaldson Run issues at Marymount Farmers Market

ATAG volunteer at Marymount Farmers Market explaining threats to Donaldson Run trees

ATAG volunteers at Marymount Farmers Market

ATAG volunteers at Marymount Farmers Market


Join us in saving Arlington’s precious urban forest along Donaldson Run

Quartz Media:  Houston’s flooding shows what happens when you ignore science and let developers run rampant  (August 29, 2017)

Amanda Henneberg, Falls Church News-Press Guest Commentary: Change Course This Election & Hold Council Accountable (August 24, 2017)

Charlie Clark, Falls Church News-Press:  Arlington tree stewards band together under the banner of the Arlington Tree Action Group (August 15, 2017)

Good news:  Residents save a significant tree in Arlington! (August 11, 2017)

Peter’s Take:  Trees Die at Wakefield High (August 27, 2015)