Category Archives: Tree Germantown

Lower Germantown Streetscape Project Set for June 21

On Saturday, June 21 over two dozen planters and tree pits will be planted with vibrant annuals and perennials on a two-block stretch of Germantown Avenue between Penn Street and Bringhurst Street. The zone was selected by Tree Germantown and the W Rockland Street Project as a corridor greening pilot experiment.

Despite lacking a formal business association, this lesser-known Germantown business district is full of life with the addition of two new businesses, Sandalwood Yoga Studio and the soul food restaurant Tasties.

There are also three building renovations underway including new construction for Around The Clock Home Health Care just before Penn Street, developer Ken Weinstein’s renovation of the 6-story building at 5301 Germantown Avenue, and Stan Smith’s renovation of 5320 Germantown Avenue. Tracy McNeil, owner of the yoga studio at 5310 Germantown Avenue, recently completed a historic renovation of the property which includes the storefront studio on the street-level and apartments on the upper floors (read about the renovation at

Google Maps capture of Germantown Avenue from Penn Street looking towards Bringhurst Street.

Google Maps capture of Germantown Avenue from Penn Street looking towards Bringhurst Street.


Aine Doley (that’s me!) and Penn Knox resident Amy Steinbugler went door-to-door to pitch the planting project and discuss the benefits of bringing greenery to Germantown Avenue. Many businesses were eager to join the effort, but some took convincing.

Those who declined to participate raised concerns about the plantings being able to survive the urban environment and the shoppers who frequent businesses along the corridor. Will the planters be stolen? Will passersby put trash in the planters? One business owner believed that people would urinate in the planters and sit on them while waiting for the 23 bus.

The participating businesses and organizations willing to give greenery a chance in the neighborhood include:

  • Sandalwood Yoga Studio at 5310 Germantown Ave
  • The One Less Foundation at 5275 Germantown Ave inside the historic Clarkson-Watson House (circa 1740)
  • Grumblethorpe at 5267 Germantown Ave, John Wister’s historic summer home built in 1744
  • Bargain Thrift at 5245 Germantown Ave
  • Around The Clock Home Health Care at 5226 Germantown Ave (current location)
  • Tasties at 5241 Germantown Ave
  • Kbello Kolors Hair Salon (tentative) at 5237 Germantown Ave
  • 5301 Germantown Ave (building currently being renovated by Ken Weinstein / Philly Office Retail)
  • 5320 Germantown Ave (building currently being renovated Stan Smith / Philly Office Retail)

Each participating business is contributing $25 per planter and has agreed to care for and water the new plants in front of their business. This project was made possible through generous donations from our community partners, who have helped to subsidize the costs of materials: Historic Germantown, Germantown United CDC, G’Town Restoration CDC, and the City of Philadelphia’s PhillyRising initiative, which selected Germantown as a Philly Rising 2.0 neighborhood in early February.

As Germantown continues to grow, Tree Germantown and the W Rockland Street Project will continue to push for greening and tree planting in our neighborhood.

Volunteers needed

Volunteering during the planting day is a great way to meet neighbors and get to know local business owners. Join us on Saturday, June 21 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Email to sign-up and visit for additional volunteer information.


Thanks again to our sponsors!

historic germantown phillyrising-logo GUCDC-logo gtownrestoration


Friend of the TTF Watershed: Aine wins an award!

Woot! My sister Aine is being honored for her environmental work in Philadelphia from the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford (TTF) Watershed Partnership. TTF will host its third annual Watershed Milestones Award Ceremony on Wednesday, May 21 at the Juanita Golf Club. The event will honor individuals and organizations who have made a difference in the TTF watershed.

Here’s what TFF has to say about Aine:

TTF would like to acknowledge Aine Doley for her outstanding volunteer work, particularly her leadership of Tree Germantown, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Tree Tenders® group in TTF’s former home neighborhood. TTF supports Tree Tenders across our watershed, because trees are key to stormwater management and neighborhood health.

Aine not only established the West Rockland Street Project (along with her sister Emaleigh), but she makes sure that her community participates in citywide efforts from the Philly Spring Clean Up to Tree Philly. She also effectively promotes community programs, challenges, and successes through social media, which is so important. We are proud to honor Aine for the ways that she demonstrates her commitment to community and watershed improvement.

Now if you’re wondering what a watershed is… That’s a good question! A watershed is all of the land that drains into a specific body of water.

The purple area on the map below shows the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford watershed. Any water that falls on the purple area of the map will eventually run into the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Creek. Crazy, right?

The watershed includes neighborhoods in North, Northeast, and Northwest Philadelphia (including Germantown!) and Abington, Cheltenham, Jenkintown, Rockledge, and Springfield in Montgomery County.

Germantown actually sits on top of not one but two watersheds, TTF and the Wissahickon Valley Watershed.

TTF_map_1Explore this map and more at Tickets to the May 21 event, which raises critical dollars to support outreach, education and restoration efforts, can be purchased online. We hear that Mayor Nutter and Philadelphia Water Commissioner Howard Neukrug are scheduled to make an appearance, but we’re most excited to see longtime Twitter bud Julie Slavet, TTF’s Executive Director! Follow @TTFWatershed and @julieslavet on Twitter!