The city of Edina is giving tree seedlings, and compost to help them grow, to Edina residents who promise to plant the trees at their homes.
The city has 1,000 seedlings and bags of compost to hand out May 3-6 to those who register in advance. One type of tree will be given out per day. The giveaways are limited to one tree per household. Here’s the schedule:
May 3: White pine
May 4: Black walnut
May 5: Sugar maple
May 6: Pin oak
At pick-up, white pine seedlings will be 7-15 inches tall, pin oak 18-24 inches, and sugar maple and black walnut 2-3 feet.
At full maturity, these trees range reach 50-80 feet tall. White pine and pin oak are the narrowest, usually spreading 20-45 feet maximum; sugar maples spread 40-50 feet; black walnut can be up to 75 feet wide.
Find tree photos and details including sun and soil information at arborday.org/trees/treeguide/.
The compost comes from the facility that processes material from Edina’s new curbside organics program.
Organics Recycling Coordinator Twila Singh noted that some of the 900 tons of organics residents have recycled so far makes up that compost.
“This is how organics recycling comes full circle,” Singh said. “What people put in their carts that previously would have been waste is now returned to them in a beneficial way to use in their yards.”
The compost is a new addition to the tree giveaway, which started in 2020 when COVID-19 precautions canceled the city’s traditional Arbor Day tree planting. Instead the city gave away 500 bur oak seedlings, which residents quickly claimed.
“When I’m driving through Edina, I often see those trees we gave away planted in people’s yards,” City Forester Luther Overholt said.
Register for a tree at bit.ly/MaxRegisterActivities.
Pickup will be 8-11 a.m. and noon to 2 p.m. on the day people registered for in the parking lot of the former Fred Richards clubhouse, 7640 Parklawn Ave. A participant must be on the registration list to receive a tree and compost.
Before arriving, participants should prepare a spot in their car by lining it with a tarp, plastic bag or old towels as the roots and the bag may be damp or dirty. A park maintenance worker can place the tree and bag in the recipient’s vehicle if the spot is accessible and prepared. Participants should wear a mask as they pull up and stay in their car, if possible, while social distancing.
Any trees or compost not claimed will be given away on a first-come, first-serve from 8-11 a.m. and noon-2 p.m. May 7 at the distribution site. No registration is necessary, but participants must show a valid ID with an Edina address.
A few days before planting the tree, Edina residents should call 811 so the tree location can be checked for underground utilities.
The hole where the tree will go should be filled with half compost and half dirt to give the tree a healthy head start, Overholt recommends.
Learn more about planting a bare-root tree at bit.ly/PlantingTreesDNR.
For more information about the trees, contact Overholt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For compost information, contact Singh at email@example.com.