Ask Renee: Saving Indianapolis' 300-year-old forest 

Contact your legislator and let them know you want to save the North Woods

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What can save a 300-year-old Indianapolis forest?


Why anyone would want to destroy a part of nature that has been around for longer than Indiana has been a state is beyond me. We’re lucky to have someone with your verve for protecting our forests.

Indiana Forest Alliance is asking us all: What Can Save a 300-Year-Old Indianapolis Forest? And the answer is: US!

Indianapolis’ Crown Hill Cemetery is 555 acres of native trees and wildflowers, animal habitat and historic treasures. One section, the North Woods, is virgin, “pre-settlement” forest filled with trees that have been there for 300+ years. It’s believed that there is at least one burr oak tree that is 500 years old.

Well, apparently, the government wants to see exactly how old it is because they want to cut it down, count its rings and clear the rest of the land to a mausoleum of sorts for Veterans. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for creating a final resting sanctuary for our country’s heroes, but according to the Indiana Forest Aliance, there are other options.

The VA has released an environmental assessment report stating that the parcel is of no significant ecological value. But the carbon-absorbing trees, American restarts, Cooper’s hawks, gray squirrels, fox squirrels, swallowtail butterflies, and endangered Indiana bats and Northern long-eared bats beg to differ.

Please read the blog and contact your legislators to stand with IFA to protect this urban ecological treasure.

Piece out,

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About The Author

Renee Sweany

Renee Sweany

Renee has spent the past several years surrounding herself with like-minded people who share her passion for caring for the planet. She began writing “Ask Renee” after four years of offering green tips through her e-newsletter Green Piece Indy. E-mail her your green living queries at

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