Winnebago County Soil and Water Conservation District announces annual tree sale

Staff Report

Winnebago County Soil and Water Conservation District’s annual tree sale is under way for 2012. Each year, the district sells bare-root tree, evergreen and shrub seedlings and transplants to increase efforts to provide energy conservation and/or habitat cover for wildlife in the rural setting. These starter seedlings and transplants are an investment in the future.

Deadline to order is March 30.

Evergreens available include white pine, Colorado blue spruce, concolor fir, Norway spruce, Canadian hemlock, American arborvitae and white spruce.

Shade trees available: red maple, sugar maple, Northern red oak, black cherry, white oak, bur oak, river birch and chokecherry.

Shrubs available include common lilac, black chokeberry, Juneberry serviceberry, silky dogwood, common witch hazel and pagoda dogwood.

Trees are sold in bundle sizes of five, 25 and 100 with prices ranging from $9-$130 for the different species and sizes.

Also available: Evergreen Package (a variety of 20 trees) for $34 and a Shrub Package (a variety of nine shrubs) for $17.

The district also offers for sale “Right Start” Fertilizer Packets to give seedlings the right starting nutrients in the right place at the right time. Tree protectors are available to improve the survivability of hardwood trees. Tree protectors increase growth and lower maintenance costs. They are designed to only be used on hardwood trees, not on shrubs or evergreens. Vispore Tree Mats are also available to help protect from weed growth around the tree. The mat provides each tree, evergreen or shrub 9 square feet of weed-free soil. The mat controls weeds, yet allows water to reach the plant.

Rain barrels and conservation books are also available.

In addition to energy conservation and wildlife habitat, trees serve a number of other purposes. Ten mature trees remove approximately 5 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere annually. They also dilute polluted air with fresh oxygen. One hundred mature trees catch about 250,000 gallons of rainwater each year. Trees planted appropriately can save up to 25 percent of annual cooling costs and save 10 to 25 percent of energy used for heating. In 40 years, the average tree returns $2.70 in benefits for every $1 of investment.

Trees will be available for pick-up in late April.

Tree sale order forms are available by calling the district office at (815) 965-2392, ext. 3, or on the website,

From the Jan. 18-24, 2012, issue

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