London's biggest ever tree planting weekend

10 January 2019

In December, thousands of Londoners got stuck in to help make the capital greener by planting almost 80,000 trees in a single weekend. 

Mayor Sadiq Khan kicked off the plant-a-thon by joining hundreds of volunteers at Forest Road Recreation Ground in Redbridge, just one of over 40 public events held throughout London’s biggest ever tree planting weekend. 

Here’s how the tree numbers broke down:

  • 25,000 trees were planted at four mass volunteering events co-ordinated by Trees for Cities. Hundreds of Londoners volunteered at sites in Redbridge, Enfield, Lewisham and Ealing. Mayor Sadiq Khan kicked off the plant-a-thon at Forest Road Recreation Ground in Redbridge, where 350 volunteers helped to plant a new community woodland of 15,000 trees.
  • 25,000 trees were planted by over 200 community groups across the capital, from residents’ associations to schools, through our tree pack giveaway with The Conservation Volunteers. More than 40 groups held open volunteering events over the course of the weekend.
  • 24,000 trees were planted by 12,000 Londoners in gardens and community spaces, thanks to our giveaway with the Woodland Trust, in support of the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy. Trees were delivered to Londoners in all 32 boroughs and the City of London who were successful in our ballot.
  • 5,000 trees were also available for Londoners to pick up in person and takeaway to plant at home, from eight sites across the capital, hosted by The Conservation Volunteers, the National Trust and Wayward Plants.

If you still want to plant a tree this winter, it’s not too late. There are still a limited number of trees available to collect from three sites, or you can find out more about choosing, buying an planting a tree.

London’s biggest ever tree planting weekend was all part of the Mayor’s plan to help make London the world’s first National Park City later this year. You can find out more about what we have planned for 2019, and how you can get involved in making London greener and wilder, by joining our mailing list at www.london.gov.uk/grow

Almost 80,000 trees planted in London as part of National Tree Week

Quotes from volunteers

Volunteers at Forest Road Recreation Ground in Redbridge

"I got involved because I’m really interested in climate change and the impact on health. London becoming a National Park City is a brilliant idea. To improve health we have to improve the environment and a lot of other mega cities should take London as an example and start to make these kinds of activities and involve the community of course." Samara Véjar, UCL Student

"Our environment is delicate, we need to be a lot more conscious of what is happening around us, how we can help ourselves and help our children. If we don’t take action now it’s going to have a massive impact down the line. This is my opportunity to get as many of my friends involved, working with the local community to give something back." Anjum Ahmedi, Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association 

Community Group Volunteers

“Loxford School have recently built an edible playground with our partners Trees for Cities, a space used by classes for reading, mindfulness and the occasional reward picnic. We bid for two tree packs through a campaign by The Conservation Volunteers (TCV) and the Mayor of London. Thanks to TCV we have planted 100 trees and shrubs to frame the paths in the area to encourage wildlife and to shade the benches in the summer." Andrew Bainbridge, Loxford School

“The King’s College London Green Libraries team were delighted to get 200 trees to be planted in our Maughan Library garden on Chancery Lane. Our aim was to increase the biodiversity of the garden using native British species and to make a nicer, clean air environment for our staff, students and local community. On the Saturday 1 December a group of volunteers mainly consisting of our Green Libraries team but also students and staff from elsewhere in King’s and family and friends met and successfully planted all 200 trees followed by celebrating with tea and cake. It was a great event and we’d like to thank you and the GLA for the trees!” Mary Whittaker, King’s College London

“We had a great day tree planting, we ended up with between 25 to 30 people, thanks to the event promotion by the Mayor of London. We ended up at the rangers’ hut for refreshments at the end making it a proper community event, many of the new volunteers will hopefully become more regular volunteers.” June Stewart, Hounslow Heath Green Gym

“Thank you for the Mayor of London, we got 50 bare root whip trees. We planted them on Saturday 1 December as a hedge. We look forward to seeing them grow next year and in the years to come.” Alistair Livingstone, The Allmead Greeners Gardening Group - Kingsmead Residents Association