FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 30, 2004
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG ANNOUNCES MULCHFEST 2005
Holiday Tree Recycling to Take Place in All Five Boroughs
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Department of Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe, and Department of Sanitation Commissioner John Doherty today announced MulchFest, a Citywide event where participants can convert their holiday trees into wood chips. The Mayor encouraged New Yorkers to recycle their holiday trees by participating in the ninth annual MulchFest on Saturday, January 8 and Sunday, January 9 in designated parks throughout the five boroughs. This year, MulchFest will have 42 recycling sites citywide. At many of the tree drop-off locations, where chippers will be on hand, the public can take home mulch for their own gardens and plants. The Department of Sanitation will also be collecting trees from the curbside and transporting to recycling sites from Thursday, January 6 through Saturday, January 15. Last year, Parks & Recreation recycled over 25,719 trees during MulchFest. The announcement was made today at a MulchFest site in Forest Park in Queens.
"For the ninth consecutive year, New Yorkers can dispose of their holiday trees in an environmentally-friendly way at the City's MulchFest program," said Mayor Bloomberg. "The annual event ensures that thousands of trees which otherwise would have been dumped in the trash are recycled into something useful. Last year, we recycled 25,719 trees, which is equivalent to the number of trees growing in Central Park. I urge all New Yorkers to recycle their holiday trees and wreaths at the nearest participating park on January 8th and 9th. It's a fun way to close out the holiday season, and participants can leave with some wood chips and the satisfaction that they helped make our city greener and more beautiful."
"MulchFest has become a compost-holiday tradition," said Commissioner Benepe. "It provides an opportunity for New Yorkers to turn holiday trees into mulch for gardens and window boxes, or donate that mulch to help beautify neighborhood parks."
"MulchFest is a tremendous step forward in our efforts to more efficiently handle the enormous volume of waste that New Yorkers produce each and every day," said Commissioner Doherty. "Not only does Sanitation pick up 12,000 tons of refuse daily and send it off for final disposal, we are recycling in greater numbers than ever before. This season's holiday tree mulching program is yet another innovative example of how the City is actually doing more by throwing away less."
Wood chip mulch moderates soil temperatures, helps retain moisture, prevents compaction, and deters weed growth, while slowly adding nutrients to the soil. Wood chips may be used to line street tree pits and flowerbeds in parks. The chips insulate the soil around the base of the tree, reduce soil compaction, increase moisture, and prevent salt-shock. Wood chips may also be used in homes and gardens to enrich soil and control weeds.
MulchFest will take place between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. (Riverside Park between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.) on Saturday, January 8 and Sunday, January 9. Many of the tree drop-off locations will have chippers on hand, and participants will be able to take home mulch from their tree. All lights, ornaments, and decorations should be removed from the trees before drop-off. Trees should not be placed in plastic bags. New Yorkers are also encouraged to take neighbors' trees to designated sites, to team up with others to collect and recycle as many trees as possible, and to bring along bags for wood chips available at specified sites, which make great liners for street tree pits and home or community gardens.
The Department of Sanitation will also be collecting trees from the curbside and transporting them to recycling sites from Thursday, January 6 through Saturday, January 15. The Department of Parks & Recreation is also working with several other partners this year as well, including Lewis Tree Service, Bronx River Alliance, Lower East Side Ecology Center, Cobble Hill Tree Trust, Prospect Park Alliance, the Central Park Conservancy, Park Slope Civic Council, the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, the Staten Island Botanical Garden, and the Queens Botanical Garden to bring MulchFest 2005 to New Yorkers.
To find the nearest MulchFest location, please log on to www.nyc.gov or call 311.
MulchFest 2005 SITES (*wood-chippers on site; chips available to participants)
Edward Skyler / Robert Lawson (212) 788-2958
Warner Johnston (Parks & Recreation)
Vito Turso (Sanitation)
Watch the video in 56k or 300k