Trees of Tomorrow at Open Engagement

Trees of Tomorrow: A speculative tour and workstation unearths the hidden politics of ornamental street trees in Flushing, Queens: the ways that ornamental street trees shape and are shaped by neighborhoods, soils, economies.

This project has many origin stories. It is linked to the Guerrilla Grafters, and our politicization/ protest of ornamentality and sterility of city streets: our demand that gestures between natures must generate deliciousness and difference. It begins with an email exchange between myself and soil practitioner Randall Szott, his seed of an idea to bridge a ‘soil practice’ project across the Social Practice Queens MFA program, John Bowne High School agricultural program students; with Cody Herrmann’s investigations into the politics and histories of Flushing; Gregory Scholette’s culture and practice of political social practice at Queens College; with the trees.

For Open Engagement 2018, we offered a publication, tours of ornamental street trees, and a speculative workstation.