Crews selected and harvested trees from within a 500-mile radius of the World Trade Center site, with additional ones coming from locations in Pennsylvania and near Washington, D.C. (Maryland), areas impacted on September 11, 2001.
Swamp white oaks (Quercus bicolor) were picked because of their durability and leaf color. In fall, the leaf color ranges from amber to a golden brown – and sometimes pink. The trees can grow to reach heights as tall as 60 feet in conditions similar to those on the plaza. The trees will never be identical, growing at different heights and changing leaves at different times, a physical reminder that they are living individuals.