Prospect Park Alliance Volunteer Helps Revive the American Chestnut
December 21, 2021
Ever wonder what happened to the American Chestnut? At the turn of the 20th century, the American chestnut towered over other trees in Eastern forests. The trees would grow as much as 100 feet high, and 13 feet wide. According to legend, a squirrel could scamper from New England to Georgia on the canopies of American chestnuts, never touching the ground.
And then, the trees began to disappear, succumbing to a mysterious fungus. The fungus first appeared in New York City in 1904—and then it spread. By the 1950s, the fungus had wiped out billions of trees, and effectively finished off the American chestnut.
Now, some folks are trying to resurrect the American chestnut– including a longtime Prospect Park Alliance volunteer, Bart Chezar, who works closely with the Prospect Park Alliance’s Landscape Management Team.