Both Dar es Salaam and Moshi are experiencing rapid urbanization, with both cities’ growth projected to continue into the future. As a result, the cities’ natural assets and the ecosystem services which they provide are under pressure. The cooling properties of trees, as well as their ability to assimilate air pollutants and store carbon, are vital ecosystem services in urban settings. These services need to be acknowledged and safeguarded. This case study documents two parallel tree planting and educational initiatives in Dar es Salaam and Moshi. It highlights that in order to derive benefits from mature trees, people have to invest in their growth and care.