The Texas Trees Foundation (TTF) provides education and tree planting, creating more livable communities by helping to preserve, grow, and maintain the urban forest.
In partnership with the City of Dallas, Salesforce, and American Forests, TTF planted 300 trees across six parks throughout 2022, with the goal of combatting urban heat, increasing equitable access to greenspace, and improving air quality. Four of the six parks are in communities with over 80% people of color and 50% living in poverty, making them more vulnerable to poor health and heat-related illness. Because many residents rent their homes, they are more dependent on public parks for nature-based exposure and benefits. Five of the six parks are also adjacent to large highways and intersections, a major source of air pollution. Indeed, Dallas student asthma rates are over 14% greater than the national average. With Dallas among the fastest warming cities in the country, this project represents one step towards improved cooling and greater tree equity for Dallas neighborhoods.
Over 200 volunteers participated in the 5 planting events, including community groups such as Climate Reality DFW, Boy Scout Troops 570 and 719, and Social Dallas Church, as well as corporate volunteers from Chase Bank, Delta Airlines, and Nolan Transportation Group. The trees planted for this project will screen residents from highway traffic pollution, provide much-needed thermal refuge to encourage outdoor recreation and exercise, and enhance public gathering places to increase social resilience.
This project is part of the broader Branching Out program, a partnership between TTF and the City of Dallas that began in 2018 with the goal of renewing Dallas’ aging urban canopy and promoting equitable greenspace for all.
Check out a snapshot of the project: Impact Report Summary
Every tree planting project demonstrates impacts that create a more just and sustainable future.
Urban Heat - 12
Active Living - 6
Wellness & Mental Health - 9
Social Health - 5
Site Selection - 7
Community Engagement in Design - 4
Community Participation in Implementation - 9
Economic Equity - 3
Climate Action - 13
Water Quality & Quantity - 9
Habitat, Food & Wood Production - 4
Bioremediation - 0
The 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs are a global call for action. These goals have the power to build a better future for everyone. Investment in this impact project drives action towards the following goals.
To improve air quality, mitigate urban heat, and promote recreation, trees were planted around high-use recreational spaces of six Dallas parks, many located next to highways and major intersections.
Tree species were selected to be native or climate-adapted, and drought-tolerant. To maximize stormwater management, trees at Lawnview and Willoughby Parks were planted in the floodplain.
Trees were purchased from a local nursery, and containers were sold back for re-use. Supplies and equipment were also locally sourced and reused.
The park neighborhoods continue to feel the impact of historic underinvestment and institutionalized racism. Four of the six parks are in communities with over 80% people of color, and greater than half living in poverty. Trees planted promote tree equity and equitable access to greenspace.
Inclusive public participation was integral to the project. Over 200 volunteers participated in the planting events.
Trees lower cooling costs by reducing regional air temperatures and providing shade. Trees were strategically planted at high-use facilities of parks to provide optimum shade and wind protection.
Trees and forests in and around cities contribute to climate-change mitigation directly by sequestering carbon and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. These project trees will store a projected 741 tons of CO2 if maintained for 25 years. Trees planted will also improve air quality, promote stormwater capture, and reduce heating and cooling costs.
The 300 trees planted represented a diverse palette of 23 species, with a minimum of 12 species planted at each park. This will increase the variety and availability of different kinds of habitat and food sources for insects and urban wildlife. Pecan and persimmon trees were also planted to allow nut and fruit harvesting by park visitors.
TTF partnered with American Forests and Salesforce on this project. As part of the broader Branching Out program, TTF also worked closely with the Dallas City Forester, Park Board, and City Council members to select planting sites and tree species that best fit the communities’ needs.