Sarma Ozols

What to see now

Check out what’s in bloom on Gov­er­nors Island, updat­ed sea­son­al­ly. Don’t for­get: you can locate any tree on Gov­er­nors Island with our inter­ac­tive tree map!

Late Fall

Little Bluestem

Schizachyrium scoparium

Little bluestem is a North American prairie grass native to most of the United States, including the New York region. It’s known as a bunchgrass, which means it typically grows in clumps, and can establish itself very quickly on disturbed soils—making it an ideal plant for the human engineered South Island park. In addition to providing a haven for nesting wildlife and pollinators, little bluestem provides aesthetic delight in all seasons through flowering stalks in the summer, orange and red colors in the fall, and bronze and tan colors in winter and spring.

Scarlet oak

Quercus coccinea

Scarlet oaks are deciduous trees mainly found in the central and eastern United States They can grow up to 75 feet tall and are known for their stunning bright scarlet leaves in the fall. They provide shelter and food for Island wildlife like birds and squirrels and are known as very popular shade trees. They have been planted as part of the Trust for Governors Island’s Community Forest Management Plan for this exact reason—as the young trees grow and mature on the South Island, visitors will be able to escape the city heat and experience their cooling benefits far into the future.

Tulip Tree

Liriodendron tulipifera

A member of the magnolia family, tulip trees are known for their tulip-shaped flowers in the spring and summer months, hence the name, and display beautifully colored leaves in the fall. They are known to be rapidly growing trees, growing up to 120 feet tall in some instances, and their seeds can provide food for Island wildlife in the late fall and winter months. There are 40 tulip trees on Governors Island, spread across Nolan Park and throughout the South Island. Pictured above are a leaf and seedpod of one of the mature tulip trees in Nolan Park.

Pho­tos by Sar­ma Ozols