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Beginning Saturday, January 23rd, free mulch from the October 2020 ice storm will be available to interested parties on a first-come, first-served basis until it is all gone. The mulch pile is located outside of the baseball fields on the north end of Hafer Park at 9th Street and Bryant Avenue.
The mulch site is not staffed, so those picking up mulch will need to make all personal arrangements to include tools, loading and transportation. Additionally, it is not possible to reserve mulch in advance of pick up.
The mulch pile consists of shredded tree debris and is safe to use for landscaping needs. However, please note that this mulch is not as finely shredded as what is typically sold by retailers.
The benefits of mulching are numerous, and the following tips are provided by our Urban Forestry staff:
• Spreading a 3-4” thick layer of mulch around your trees can help to prevent further stress as they are recovering from damage and loss of branches due to the ice storm.
• Mulch creates a favorable environment for tree root growth, by helping to retain soil moisture, regulating soil temperature, adding minerals that are necessary for tree survival, and reducing competition with weeds/grass.
• Most of a tree’s absorptive roots are located near the drip line, or furthest reach of its branches. Trees will benefit most from broadly mulched areas beneath the canopy, rather than a small ring around the trunk. Don’t be afraid to mulch a large area!
• While mulch is very beneficial, certain practices can be harmful. Avoid piling mulch against the trunk, which can lead to decay. Instead, pull it away from the base of the tree by a few inches. Spread your mulch no deeper than 6” to avoid negatively impacting gas exchange between roots and the soil surface.