Baltimore County holding residential big trees sale
Wednesday, 10 October 2012 11:01

Part of effort to increase tree canopy

by Nicole Rodman

    Just two months ago, Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz stood under a blazing hot sun to announce the county’s latest initiative, the Cool Trees program.
    The program was designed to save money on energy bills by planting large shade trees outside of public buildings across the county.
    Calling the program “a simple thing that has a lot of benefit to it,” Kamenetz noted that the trees would also reduce stormwater runoff and greenhouse gases.
    Now, county officials are encouraging residents to reap the benefits by planting big trees in their own yards.
    To this end, fall sales are now open for the Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability’s biannual Big Trees Sale.
    Hosted in the spring and fall, the Big Trees Sale offers residents the chance to buy a variety of native trees at low prices.
    According to the Big Trees Sale website, there are a number of important reasons to consider planting a large tree in a residential yard.
    In addition to asthetic appeal and the shade provided, trees also help clean the air, soak up excess rainwater and provide habitats for wildlife.
    As the county’s Deparment of Environmental Protection and Sustainability notes, “Big Trees help Baltimore County enhance our local watersheds, protect drinking water reservoirs, and restore the Chesapeake Bay watershed.”
   

During the Big Trees Sale, only trees native to Maryland will be sold.
    Trees available for purchase include various Maryland oak, maple, birch and redbud species.
    A complete list of tree species, as well as more information on the sale, can be found at www.baltimorecountymd.gov/Agencies/environment/
forestsandtrees/bigtrees.html.
    All of the trees, which stand four to seven feet tall at purchase, are available for between $20 and $30.
    Trees may be purchased in person during the county’s Big Trees Sale at the Baltimore County Center for Maryland Agriculture, 1114 Shawan Road in Cockeysville, on Saturday, Oct. 13, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    Trees are also available for purchase online at www.baltimorecountymd.gov/Agencies/environment/forestsandtrees/bigtreesorder.html.
    Trees ordered online will be available for pickup at 7131 Brinkmans Road in Middle River.   
    Officials urge those interested to place their order as soon as possible, as trees may be sold quickly.
    Those planning to plant big trees in their yard are encouraged to pick a spot carefully, avoiding any power lines or other utilities.
    For more information on planting trees in the right spot, visit BGE’s website at www.bge.com/customerservice/servicerequests/treetrimming/pages/planting-in-the-right-place.aspx.
    For more information on the Baltimore County Big Trees Sale, call 410-887-4488, extension 242, or e-mail bigtrees@baltimorecountymd.gov.