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Page last updated on April 12, 2023 at 10:09 am

For more information, please contact

Angela Van Rooy, Neighborhood Services Program Manager, 

Housing and Neighborhood Development (HAND) or 812-349-3505


Andrew Krebbs, Communications Director, Office of the Mayor or 812-349-3406




City Announces Partnership with Indianapolis Zoo

Bloomington, Ind.– The City is launching a pilot program with the Indianapolis Zoo that encourages residents to reduce invasive and undesirable plants on their properties and donate them to the Zoo for animal food.


The City will facilitate the process of connecting residents who would like to donate cut vegetation with the Zoo. Zoo staff will pick up donations directly from Bloomington residences. The types of plants that may be donated include:

  • Yellow Groove Bamboo (Phyllostachys aureosulcata)
  • Callery/Bradford Pear (Pyrus calleryana)
  • Siberian Elm (Ulmus pumila)
  • Black Alder (Alnus glutinosa)
  • White Mulberry (Morus alba)
  • Maple (Norway: Acer platanoides; Amur: Acer ginnala)
  • Box Elder (Acer negundo)


Invasive plants often eliminate native plants, decreasing biodiversity and altering the ecosystem. This includes plants and animals, and the effects can be far-reaching and long-term. 


“As we look directly into an increasing climate crisis, we need to consider all of the ways in which we can protect our planet, and maintaining healthy biodiversity is one of them,” said Mayor John Hamilton. “A program like this that supports residents in removing invasive plants while feeding animals is an all-around win.” 


“We are excited to partner with the city of Bloomington on the new browse program. Many of our animals at the Zoo, including elephants, bears, and red pandas, eat bamboo and browse from trees, even our three flocks of macaws enjoy it daily,” said Jodie Baker, General Curator at the Indianapolis Zoo.


Residents who plan to remove any of the approved plants from their properties may offer to donate the cut vegetation to the Zoo by signing up at this link:


Please read the detailed instructions carefully before you sign up. These must be followed to ensure the health and safety of the zoo animals, as well as the safety of Bloomington residents and Zoo staff. 


For more information, please contact Angela Van Rooy, Housing and Neighborhood Development, at or 812-349-3505.


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