This article profiles past and present deforestation and reforestation in the U.S. Virgin Islands, along with the geography and ecology of the three islands. The islands of St. Thomas and St. John form one ecological and cultural unit, whereas St. Croix, located approximately 40 mi to the south, makes up another unit. Different periods of human occupation have left their marks on the islands, including extinctions and introductions of plant and animal species. Owing to the small size and population density of the U.S. Virgin Islands, tree planting is generally for landscaping or small-scale ecological restoration projects rather than timber production. Therefore, trees are grown in containers and tend to be planted as saplings rather than as seedlings.
This article also provides information on the Category 5 hurricanes in September 2017 that devastated the U.S. Virgin Islands and the on-going efforts for restoration and recovery.