Over the last 100 years, the population of Palo Alto's city-owned trees has grown to approximately 36,000. However during the 1990’s the forest began to deteriorate due to drought, age and lack of resources for adequate care.
In 1993, the city of Palo Alto appointed a Tree Task Force to begin a two-year study of Palo Alto’s urban forest. The task force reconfirmed the numerous benefits provided by the city’s urban forest and recommended a consistent program of tree planting, maintenance and education.
Canopy was created in 1996 to support the City's urban forestry programs and engage residents in learning about their importance and how to care for them. Canopy became an independent 501(c)3 in 2002 and has extended its programs to neighboring communities of East Palo Alto and Menlo Park and to Mountain View through its affiliate Mountain View Trees.
"Palo Alto's urban forest has been growing in private yards and City land for more than a century. The most critical time for all of the trees has been in the last decade. Canopy's work with the community and the City has filled a critical gap and continues to do so."
~ Dave Dockter,
Advisor, City of Palo Alto