Greenest Block in Brooklyn

Greenest Block In Brooklyn

The entry deadline has passed for the 2016 Contest. Please enter next year!

The Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest promotes streetscape gardening, tree stewardship, and community development in Brooklyn through block and merchant associations and other groups.

Prizes are awarded for residential and commercial blocks and for greenest storefront, best window box, and other greening efforts.


First Prize is a $300 check for each top residential and commercial block winner. All other finalists will receive cash prizes ranging from $100 to $200.

Further award catagories include: Best Window Box, Greenest Storefront, Best Street Tree Beds, Best Community Garden Streetscape, and the National Grid Leadership in Sustainable Practices Award. These winners will receive cash prizes or gardening tools, and all participants will be awarded a recognition certificate.

Winners will be announced in August 2016 at a press conference held on the winning block.

Contest participants who attend the fall Recognition Ceremony will also receive a gift bag of fall bulbs and a certificate of recognition for their participation.

Street clinics are available for entering blocks. Availability is limited; first come, first served. Visit Street Clinics or call 718-623-7250 for an application.

Rules & Judging Criteria

Rules for Residential Blocks

The purpose of the contest is to promote streetscape gardening in the borough of Brooklyn through block associations and other community groups. For more information, call 718-623-7250.

  • Applications must enter online by Wednesday, June 1, 2016.
  • Entrants must be a block association, civic group, or neighborhood organization.
  • Entrants must represent one block only (both sides of the street, corner to corner). If an organization represents more than one block, please enter each block separately.
  • The first-prize residential winner from last year may not enter the contest this year.

Rules for Commercial Blocks

  • Applications must enter online by Wednesday, June 1, 2016.
  • Entrants must be a merchant association, development corporation, business improvement district, or other nonprofit business association.
  • Each commercial entry represents one side of the street only, corner to corner. If an organization represents more than one side of any block, each side must be entered separately.
  • The first-prize commercial winner from the last year may not enter the contest this year.

Judging Criteria for "Greenest Block in Brooklyn" Contest (Residential and Commercial)

  • Citizen Participation
    What efforts indicate community effort, such as street tree maintenance and mulching, signage, community gardens, or areas cooperatively gardened by the block? How many residents/businesses on the block seem to be involved in greening/gardening? Are children being encouraged to take part in greening efforts?
  • Street Trees and Tree Beds
    Are the trees pruned and maintained? Are there any dead trees or dangerous limbs? Have new trees been planted? Are tree guards well designed? Have underplantings been planted appropriately? Are the trees mulched correctly? Are the trees being watered? Has soil or mulch been piled inappropriately at the tree’s base?
  • Variety and Suitability of Plants
    Are there different kinds of plants, trees, shrubs, and flowers? Are native plants being used? Are their significant numbers of window boxes? Are the “right plants in the right place”—sun-loving in the sun, shade-loving in the shade?
  • Horticulture Practice
    What is the quality and condition of the plants? Are the flowers and shrubs pruned appropriately? What has been done to combat problems of insects or diseases? Are plants receiving enough water? Too much?
  • Soil and Mulching
    Is mulch being used in tree beds and around plantings? Is it the right depth and distance from plant stems? Is the soil exposed and/or compacted? Is it obvious that compost is being used? To what extent?
  • Maintenance
    Refers to cleanliness and neatness. Are there a lot of weeds? Are flowers deadheaded? Is there a lot of debris on the block? (Blocks won’t be penalized if judging occurs on the day of sanitation pickup and there are garbage cans on sidewalks.)
  • Color
    Does the block use color effectively? Remember that green is a color with many shades!
  • Creativity
    What creative efforts to green up and beautify the block are noticeable?
  • Total Visual Effect
    What is the visual effect when you view the whole block?
Free Street Gardening Clinics for Community Groups
As part of the "Greenest Block in Brooklyn" contest, GreenBridge offers a limited number of free street gardening clinics to block associations and neighborhood groups. The clinics provide on-site gardening instruction for street tree beds along with other urban gardening practices best suited for your block.


  1. Applicants must be sponsored by a block association or neighborhood organization registered for the 2016 Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest.
  2. A minimum of ten people must attend.
  3. Securing a location for the clinic and providing publicity are the responsibility of the block association or neighborhood organization.
  4. The date and time will be negotiated with GreenBridge.
  5. An application must be submitted at least three weeks before your first proposed clinic date. Deadline for all requests is Friday, May 6.
  6. Please fill out the attached application, and we will contact you regarding scheduling. We are able to provide a limited number of clinics, so we must respond to requests on a first-come, first-served basis.

Note: Clinics can be held indoors or outdoors, but an indoor site should be secured in case of rain.

Download Application

Please download the PDF application, fill it out, and mail to the address listed.

See winning blocks from 2015 ›
See winning blocks from 2014 ›
See winning blocks from 2013 ›

For more information, email [email protected] or call 718-623-7250.

2016 Residential Participants

View all the residential blocks that have entered the 2016 Greenest Block in Brooklyn contest. Click the map points to see the names of the registered block associations.

GreenBridge Support

A project of GreenBridge, the community environmental horticulture program of Brooklyn Botanic Garden, and Borough President Eric L. Adams, with leadership support from Brooklyn Community Foundation.

Logo: Brooklyn Community FoundationLogo: Dept of Cultural Affairs

Major Sponsor, GreenBridge
Logo: National Grid

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