The bright, green spring leaves of the English elm (Ulmus procera) in the northwest corner of Washington Square Park have darkened and the canopy has thickened, too.
Though he was writing about the American elm (U. americana), Arthur Plotnick's description of the shading characteristics of the tree is accurate of this U. procera.
The tall trunk and spreading canopy of the elm made it ideal as a shade tree that cooled buildings and allowed trucks to pass beneath. A street blessed with rows of elms was like a cathedral (The Urban Tree Book, p. 55).
Interested in documenting the life of a tree this year? Learn more at The Tree Year project website.
Previous English Elm in the Tree Year posts are available at
English Elm in the Tree Year, part 2
English Elm in The Tree Year