Let’s Take Back Our Trees!

Everyone hates seeing ugly plastic bags caught in trees—so let’s do something about them. I’ve started a GoFundMe drive for a communal Bag Snagger, a device designed to get rid of these bags. (I can keep it in my building and loan it out, and when I feel cooped up I’ll go on a vigilante bag-snagging spree.) A Bag Snagger that extends 28 feet is $329, and a cloth carrying bag (because the thing has blades at the end) is $64. I’ll handle the shipping cost if the total is more than $400. Donate now! You’re not just buying the Bag Snagger—you’re buying the labor of me removing bags from the neighborhood and the right to borrow it yourself for some bag-snagging fun.

P.S. I know this is ridiculous but I’m also totally earnest about it. Why stand around whining about how nasty the trees look when we can fix the problem? For a small amount of money you can be part of the solution.

UPDATE: We’ve met the $400 goal! You’re welcome to keep giving, of course—we can donate it to a group fighting to ban plastic shopping bags in the city and/or state.



  1. Great idea. Thanks for all of your thoughtfulness related to the neighborhood.

  2. I was just thinking about this – especially in duane park.

  3. I hate those bags! What a great idea. Can we borrow it for Tribeca Park and vicinity? Friends of Tribeca Park

  4. Ban plastic shopping bags in the city/state? What’s with the Bloomberg nanny state stuff?

    Let me clue you in on something: 99.9999999999% of the plastic shopping bags provided by supermarkets etc. in this city are used as garbage bags. Or do you throw away your garbage in canvas totebags? If so you are one wealthy man. If you ban the recycled plastic bags Best Market provides you literally force people to buy plastic garbage bags and guess what? You’re not reducing the consumption or use of plastic bags, you are increasing the cost to dispose of garbage thus adding even more to the cost of living for NYC residents including low/limited/fixed income people who are already saddled with enough living expenses, which is why this ban is stupid and will never pass. I would liken this ban to a backhanded garbage disposal tax where the tax is the cost of plastic bags you have to now buy. Garbage bag costs add up and not everyone has the income to spend on them like you and your fellow affluent neighbors. Btw where can we compost? I would be more than happy to buy a composting box to throw orange skins, banana peels etc. in if I could compost.

    I am all for using a canvas tote to buy a handful of items (e.g. milk, apple or two, container of walnuts.) and practice what I preach by using one just for those light grocery runs myself. However, if I have run out of plastic shopping bags, I will leave the tote behind and buy enough stuff so I can get two plastic bags which will tide me over for two or three days until I go on a bigger shopping spree where I buy three bags worth of groceries and am provided six plastic bags for them so I have six bags to dispose garbage in.

    Oh yeah – if we’re gonna ban plastic bags, let’s ban ones from non-supermarkets (clothing stores etc), plastic straws and utensils, paper napkins and plates, too, and other disposable items which I see way more of on the streets than plastic bags. Also Whole Foods puts groceries in paper bags which are fire hazards and can’t be tied up closed thus are unsuitable for garbage disposal (not too mention they fall apart if too many groceries are put in them and can fall apart if enough rain beats down on them.)

    • You can compost at the Tribeca Greenmarket on Wednesdays and Saturdays on Greenwich Street.

      • Thank you for the information which is nice to know, but not everyone has the time and/or discipline to do that. Some don’t have the strength to walk all the way to that composting station and back home (with the compost box) like the elderly and some older people. Besides that most people like me are at work (Wednesdays) and/or away for the weekend (Saturdays) when that composting service is offered. If I’m home on a Saturday and the orange peels etc. have piled up, I’ll compost but otherwise I can’t.

        What do you dispose your non-composting garbage in?

  5. Bottom line is even if I used up to five big totebags for groceries, I still have to use the necessary evil called plastic bags to dispose of garbage. These bags are kept at home.

    It sucks that some people are thoughtless slobs who let plastic bags they carry their takeout in wind up in trees and parks and on sidewalks, but I don’t think an elderly person on a fixed income should have to buy garbage bags because of their thoughtlessness.

  6. Maybe we should just ban orange peels?

  7. What about more trees for TriBeCa?
    I seem to recall the city used to have a program where you could request a tree planted in front of your property. Not sure if that sill exists. Some of the streets are sadly un-green. Or perhaps TriBeCans like it that way?

    • https://www.nycgovparks.org/trees/street-tree-planting/request

      Request a Street Tree

      If you are a property owner, you can have a tree planted on your street for free! Submit a Service Request through our tree service request system or by calling 311. After making your request, you will receive an identification number to track its status.

      * All requests are handled on a first-come, first-served basis. Not all requests can be satisfied immediately and some may take longer than a year.

      * Each location you request is surveyed in person by a Parks Forester to make sure there are no conflicts with the surrounding infrastructure, and that the site is a suitable one for a tree to grow and thrive. If a site is found to be appropriate for a new tree, we will add it to a list to be planted during our next available planting season.

      * View the street tree planting guidelines [PDF].

      * Requests can be made for existing empty tree beds as well as paved sidewalk locations.

      * You can make a tree species suggestion along with your request; however, the Parks Forester in charge of the planting will make the final species determination. Their primary objective is to select a tree that will grow safely and provide the greatest possible level of benefits to a neighborhood.

      * Trees are only planted during our two planting seasons: Spring (March 1 to May 31) and Fall (October 1 to December 31).

      * Parks does not plant on private property.