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New Year, New Programs, Updated Mission


young woman holding a small tree after removing it from a pot in preparation for planting it in a San Francisco sidewalk
Tree planting in San Francisco's Bayview neighborhood, June 2022

At Friends of the Urban Forest, we connect people to nature and each other by planting and caring for San Francisco’s trees and gardens. That’s probably not news to you, but it is our new mission statement!


We spent the last year assessing our past and present, and thinking about the future, in order to update our mission, vision and values. We’re working hard to realize a city where all people, trees and plants thrive. And we’re explicitly grounding that work in values of environmental justice, community, stewardship, trust and joy.


What will that look like in 2023? We'll be deploying three new strategies to grow our urban forest canopy:

  • We’ll launch an Adopt-A-Yard-Tree program, in response to community feedback, where we plan to give away 200 trees for free for residents to plant in their yard. This will enable us to plant trees that aren't suitable for (or allowed on) city streets, including fruit trees and larger species.

  • We’ll renew our practice of replacing street trees that have died or been removed, to make good use of the many empty tree basins on our streets. This will also enable us to respond to requests for trees outside our grant-funded planting zones.

  • We’ll work on greening our schoolyards to provide educational opportunities for environmental stewardship while reducing the expanse of asphalt that creates hot, unhealthy conditions at too many public schools in San Francisco.

We look forward to telling (and showing) you more about these programs — and others — in the months ahead.


Young woman hammering a nail in a new street tree's support structure
Tree planting in San Francisco's NoPa neighborhood, December 2022

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