The City is currently experiencing extremely dry weather, which is putting trees in jeopardy. Those planted within the past three years are at a greater risk, as that is the time most critical to their survival. The City's Department of Public Works and the Richmond Tree Stewards are asking residents to help water City trees by filling any empty green water bags on newly planted trees near their home. The water bags, also called gator bags, provide a continuous supply of water to the trees until the bags are empty.
Typically, in order to withstand hot temperatures, a newly planted tree either needs 15 gallons of water each week or one inch of rainfall. A City contractor waters new trees during the first year. Adopt-A-Tree participants water them for the first two years and City crews water them during the second and third year following transplantation. So, while the City has been getting occasional storms and showers, the amount of rain has not been enough to keep the trees watered sufficiently. Due to the current weather conditions, some trees are not receiving enough water to survive and thrive, even with the contractors, volunteers and City workers. Any assistance residents can provide is appreciated by the City and its urban forest.