NYU’s Class of 2008 Gives Back the Green to Manhattan


On Saturday, September 26th, in conjunction with the 400th anniversary of Hudson s arrival, New York University will unveil the NYU Native Woodland Garden, the Class of 2008 s legacy gift, at Schwartz Plaza, at the corner of Washington Square Park East and West 4th Street, from 1-3pm.

From Top:  Installation of Woodland Garden (initial planting June 2009); flowering Serviceberry (Amelanchier canadensis), and George Reis, NYU s supervisor for sustainable landscaping.  (Image of George Reis credit:  Evan Sung for The New York Times)
From Top: Installation of Woodland Garden (initial planting June 2009); flowering Serviceberry (Amelanchier canadensis), and George Reis, NYU s supervisor for sustainable landscaping. (Image of George Reis credit: Evan Sung for The New York Times)

A Legacy Gift of a Native Woodland Garden is Unveiled Sept. 26 at Schwartz Plaza

On Saturday, September 26th, in conjunction with the 400th anniversary of Hudson’s arrival, New York University will unveil the NYU Native Woodland Garden at Schwartz Plaza, at the corner of Washington Square Park East and West 4th Street, from 1-3pm.

Manhattan’s landscape has changed dramatically since Henry Hudson set foot here on September 12, 1609, and New York University’s Class of 2008’s legacy gift is helping to revive a 2,200-square-foot patch of Hudson’s Mannahatta this fall. This is the largest such “native garden” being planted as part of the Mannahatta Project (http://themannahattaproject.org/) in NYC.

George Reis, NYU’s supervisor of sustainable landscapes, will be on hand to talk about the variety of native trees, shrubs, and perennials included in the garden, and Kaity Tsui, chair of NYU’s Green Alumni Network, will speak about the “green” impact of this woodland both inside and outside NYU’s classrooms.

“All 39 species planted so far and remaining to be planted as part of this project are believed by the Mannahatta Project to have been present on Manhattan Island before European settlement in 1609,” explains Reis. “The ultimate aim of the garden is educational; we want to be available for teaching, research and community service. We want this to be available as an urban ecology project to learn what are the native plants which work best in the city,” said Reis.

Darrel Morrison, FASLA, recipient of the 2006 Landscape Designer Award of the American Horticultural Society, is the garden’s designer.

The Garden was funded by a gift from the NYU Class of 2008 in association with the NYU Garden Shop, the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Mannahatta Project, and The Henry Hudson 400 Foundation. The New York Times recently featured an article highlighting the significance of this project, which can be read here: www.nytimes.com/2009/09/03/garden/03garden.html

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Christopher James
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