Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Viilage of Glen Ellyn provides mulching advice

As posted in today's e-newsletter from the Village of Glen Ellyn (below).  Sadly, many local landscaping contractors still don't how to properly mulch a tree.  We need to be inspecting their work.

Help Stop the Practice of Volcano Mulching
"Volcano Mulching" refers to the practice of piling mulch against the trunk of a tree, thereby creating a volcano shape at the base of the tree. This practice is extremely harmful to the health of trees.

Mulch provides numerous benefits which include; insulates soil, retains moisture, prevents weed growth, prevents soil compaction, reduces lawnmower damage, and adds an aesthetic touch to a yard or street! To mulch trees properly, remove any grass within a circular mulch area between 3 to 10 feet in diameter, depending on tree canopy's outer diameter. Pile wood chips, mulch shred, or bark pieces within the circle, but NOT touching the trunk. Many landscapers recommend creating a "well of mulch", where the least amount is around the trunk, fanning the mulch up and out, but only piled 2 to 4 inches above the ground line. Anything higher, or piled right up to the trunk, is referred to as "volcano mulching".

This practice prevents air from circulating around living bark, and can harbor mold and bugs. The use of this practice can eventually kill a tree. Be a protector of our parkway trees. Participate in these tree preservation practices, encourage landscape contractors to also do so, and help ensure the health of our Village trees for decades to come! 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Spring and Summer Eco-Events List

Before you head out to one of the events listed below, check to make sure you don't have excessive mulch pushed up against the trunks of your trees (commonly called "volcano mulching"). Your favorite landscaper is putting your trees at risk! Pull it back to protect your tree's health (see photo).

May 19 (Glen Ellyn) - Energy conservation for Your Home - at SCARCE - Featuring a speaker from the Citizens Utility Board (CUB).  It is time to debunk a huge energy conservation myth!

May 21 (Wheaton) - Greening Your Home, a program at Cantigny

June 3 (Wheaton) - The DuPage Coffee House moves to the home of Ted Lowe for a special program about An Approach to Ecological Living in the Suburbs.  More info coming soon.

June 13 (Aurora) - the Sixth Annual Aurora Greenfest

June 12-19 (various locations) - Bike to Work Week

Aug 15-16 (Lisle) - for vegetarians, the Chicago Veggie Fest

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Earth Day Festival 2015 at Lake Ellyn

Announcing another great festival at the Boathouse.  Thanks to the lead role taken by the Glen Ellyn Park District, we are very excited to have a variety of business and nonprofit organizations (at least 15 of them) share their knowledge and enthusiasm with the community.

Here are a few details provided by the Park District:

Date:                     Wednesday, April 22nd
Event Time:        7:00 PM to ~ 9:00 +/-
Set-up Time:      6:00 – 7:00 PM
Location:              Lake Ellyn Park in the Boathouse
Address:              645 Lenox Road, Glen Ellyn

This year we are going with a FOOD theme, but know that not everyone has this as a central mission. Therefore, we hope to highlight the ideas of locally sourced food, organic and sustainably grown food, vegetable gardens, composting, and edible landscaping.  We’ll also have information about smarter energy use, better indoor/outdoor lighting, the benefits of native plants, upcoming environmental events, the Glen Ellyn Saves Monarchs initiative, as well as giving away free oak saplings.  Something Different will be sharing their musical talents and the Naperville Astronomical Association will be setting up  telescopes for closer looks at our night sky (let’s hope for a clear night!).

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Eco-Crazy April is under way

Welcome to Glen Ellyn's Earth Month.  The previous post summarizes a wide array of events for you to participate in meaningful environmental activities that support of your values for your family, the earth, and your community.  Facebook "likes" is not enough anymore.  April has traditionally been the time when we come out of out winter cocoons and renew our commitment.

Again, we are supporting the Glen Ellyn Park District in its unique and special Earth Day Festival at the Lake Ellyn Boat House on Wednesday, April 22nd.  This year will be different, and we urge you attend.

More politically-minded folks (honestly, that should be all of us) will be traveling to Springfield for a day of lobbying. It is considered to be an impactful and enjoyable way to engage our elected leadership, especially during this watershed year for energy policy. They enjoy receiving feedback from constituents.  Otherwise, there will be plenty of opportunities to be engaged this month.  For example, there will be several workshops on residential energy efficiency. Pick one and go!  We all need to "walk our talk" as we are able, and these workshops will be fun and engaging. Plenty of outdoor activities as well.  Stay tuned!