The Nature of the Square newsletterSign up!

We don’t have an official statement about the protest marks on the monuments in the park, but we have to speak out against the defacement of trees in the park. Trees are living beings, not objects, with inherent rights to exist and thrive. Please do not “tag” the trees in Washington Square Park or elsewhere.

Black Lives Matter, still. And Washington Square Park remains a public space for equity protests and advocacy work. In our June 2020 newsletter we shared a short list of justice organizations to which you can donate. Please share your recommendations, and let us know how you are working for justice in your community. This week, July 6-11, 2020, is #BlackBotanistsWeek and Georgia is a member of the organizing team. Support the pursuits of Black people who loves plants!

Last time we reported on the death of a mature tree in the park. The 35-inch diameter American linden in the NW woodland was cut down last week. It’s a big loss. We are happy to report that the sycamores and plane trees now have full healthy canopies. No more anthracnose. Most of the trees on our phenology trail (map here) are no longer flowering or fruiting with the exception of the kousa dogwood and tulip tree. These two trees have unripe fruit on their stems.

Red-tailed hawks are still in and out of the park. On July 7th, we spotted a molting adult in the southeast corner of the park, and watched another adult soar back and forth over the park before perching on a nearby building where it was harassed by a Northern mockingbird. You can see chimney swifts in the park too. View the park’s hotspot map on eBird.

We are making progress on the Your Bird Story podcast. Tell us about your relationship or experience with a wild bird. Email us to schedule an interview via Zoom.

Listen to read alouds of nature-based picture books on our YouTube channel. The latest book is Big Night for Salamanders by Sarah Marwil Lamstein.

As always, please reach out to us with any natural history questions about the park. Our email is We are happy to answer them if we can.