If you’re planning on heading out and getting a Christmas tree this holiday season, please leave the axe at home. Urban Roots is teaming up with Riverkeeper, Grassroots Gardens and Olmsted Parks to, once again, offer up an alternative that can help your home, the city and our planet. Why not consider investing in a living tree? “Living trees improve the air quality of your home,” says Patti Jablonski-Dopkin, General Manager of Urban Roots Community Gardening Center. “And eventually your community. They absorb carbon dioxide and produce oxygen as well as mediate air temperature and humidity. When you bring a living tree into your home, you and your family get the benefits of natural air purification. By planting the tree in your yard or an urban neighborhood after Christmas, you give the continued gift of improved air quality to the community. The trees will also provide habitat for native wildlife species as they grow. Living trees reduce landfill use and methane production. 30-35 million cut Christmas trees are sold in the U.S. each year and approximately 10 million of them end up in landfills, thus producing methane. When you purchase a living tree, you keep valuable nutrients out of the landfill and cut methane production.”
If you’re not sure what to do with the tree once the holidays are over, bring it back to Urban Roots and they will take care of it until spring. Then they will give your tree to one of the partnering groups to get it planted (you can even get a write off). Additionally, since you did such a good deed, you can go and visit your tree whenever you want! Then you can buy a friend for your tree next season, and the season after that. After all, we were once known as the City of Trees.
Urban Roots Community Garden Center, located at 428 Rhode Island Street, offers eight (8) varieties of living, locally-grown evergreens for the holidays. They are priced in the $60-$70 range and stand 3′-4′ feet tall. The staff can provide you with full planting instructions.