County tree sale aims to boost region’s canopy
Wednesday, 25 September 2013 09:32
    The Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability (EPS) is holding its “Big Trees Sale” to encourage homeowners to plant trees in their yards.
    “Big native trees not only beautify your yard and neighborhood, their shade can reduce your energy costs, their roots help keep stormwater from running off into our waterways and their leaves help clean carbon from the atmosphere,” said County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.  
    Each spring and fall, the Big Trees Sale features a selection of native trees supplied by Baltimore County’s reforestation nursery.
    “Big trees” are Maryland-native species such as oaks and maples that grow taller and cast shade over a wider area than do smaller trees such as dogwoods and flowering cherries. They need room to grow and take longer to mature, but they provide greater and longer-lasting benefits to homeowners when properly sited. Big tree species generally outperform smaller ornamental tree species in providing environmental benefits, with a greater ability to soak up excess rainwater, save energy through shading, remove atmospheric carbon, and add to property values for single-family homes.
    So far, more than 300 residents have planted nearly 1,700 trees though this program. This year’s sale will take place on Saturday, Oct, 12 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Baltimore County Center for Maryland Agriculture and Farm Park at 1114 Shawan Road in Cockeysville.  
    EPS is also offering tree shelter kits to better protect the trees from deer browsing and buck rubbing.
    Eleven different species are available. Trees are mostly four-to-five feet tall, in three-gallon pots, and are offered for prices ranging from $20 to $30. The Big Trees website (www.baltimorecountymd.gov/bigtrees) has pictures and descriptions of each species to help residents find the right tree for their property.
    Trees must be ordered online using the online order form available at
www.baltimorecountymd.gov/Agencies/environment/forestsandtrees/bigtreesorder.html.
    For convenience, those who prefer can pick up trees early from the EPS nursery in Chase. EPS encourages ordering trees as soon as possible before some species sell out.
    Species offered for the fall sale include:

    Black Oak
    Bur Oak
    Chestnut Oak
    Pin Oak
    Northern Red Oak
    Scarlet Oak
    Swamp White Oak
    River Birch
    Eastern Redbud
    Pawpaw
    White Oak

    For more information on the sale, e-mail bigtrees@baltimorecountymd.gov.