In neovim, I have my leader mapped to space.

I also use nvim-tree.

What I want: when nvim-tree is open and that is the active buffer (cursor is there), map leader to something else so I can use space to expand folders in the tree. This feels most natural to me.

Is there a way to do this? Seems like it'd be useful broadly to have environment dependent keymaps

  • You can always use <localleader> with <buffer>-specific mappings.
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Jan 3, 2023 at 19:10
  • Thanks! I'll give that a try
    – echo
    Jan 4, 2023 at 13:51
  • I think I got it working
    – echo
    Jan 4, 2023 at 13:54
  • please post an answer if you solved your problem
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Jan 4, 2023 at 21:04

1 Answer 1


In require("nvim-tree").setup(), add the space key (or any key) as an 'edit' keymap and it'll automatically override other mappings to that key when in the tree context. I thought I'd have to manually configure this but it just works out of the box:

  view = {
    mappings = {
      list = {
        { key = {" ", "<other edit keys>"}, cb = tree_cb("edit") },

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