FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, March 5, 2012
Contact: Megan Gilliland, communications manager, (785) 832-3406
Three city programs that help your garden grow
(Lawrence, Kan.) – This year’s mild winter temperatures have green thumbs around Lawrence ready to start planning their vegetable and flower gardens for this year. Here are three city programs that can help you get ready for spring and gear up for a successful planting season.
Compost Sale - The city’s compost sale will be held on Friday, March 23, 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., and Saturday, March 24, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The compost sale will close early if the supply is depleted. The cost is $10 per truck load; the price will be more for larger trucks or trailers (cash only, please). The city cannot load trucks with ladder racks. This compost is not intended for commercial applications, but rather for the citizens of Lawrence. Dump truck quantities are not allowed. If you load the compost yourself, there is no charge. Bring shovels and buckets if you plan to load your own. The event is held at the city’s Wood Recovery and Composting facility located at 1420 E. 11th St.
The City of Lawrence’s compost is made from the weekly curbside collection of residential yard trimmings, which includes grass, leaves, garden prunings, and small woody waste. Due to the length of the composting process and the biological changes that occur, 99% of all chemicals have dissipated prior to public distribution. City staff tests the compost for levels of ammonia and carbon dioxide; tests are also completed for pH and salinity.
Compost is a fertilizer, and is meant to be mixed into the soil. For food gardens, it is recommended to add up to 1 1/2 inches of compost to every 6 inches depth of tilled soil. Do NOT plant in 100% compost. Visit www.LawrenceRecycles.org for more information.
Woodchip Sale - The City of Lawrence woodchip sale will be held Thursday, April 12, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday, April 13, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturday, April 14, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (or until supplies are depleted). The woodchip sale takes place at the city’s Wood Recovery and Composting facility located at 1420 E. 11th St. The sale is held rain or shine. Cost is $10 per pick up load; the price will be more for larger trucks. Patrons are asked to bring a tarp for their pickup to secure woodchips, preventing woodchips from littering the roadway when leaving the facility.
Woodchips, like mulch, are helpful when it comes to the growth of newly planted trees, when used in gardens or used in flower gardens. Spreading woodchips reduces the amount of water lost through evaporation, prevents excess run-off, restricts weed growth, and replaces valuable nutrients into the soil.
The woodchips the City sells are made from tree materials brought in from both residential and commercial sources. The Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department doesn’t purchase mulch, instead it recycles trees that are cut down throughout the city. The trees are then run through a chipper and used as mulch. Visit www.LawrenceRecycles.org for more information.
Rain Barrel Workshop – The City of Lawrence Stormwater Division will hold a Rain Barrel Workshop on Thursday, April 19 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Douglas County Fairgrounds, 2110 Harper Street, Building 1.
A rain barrel collects and stores rainwater from your rooftop for use in your yard or garden. Water collected in a rain barrel would normally flow through your downspout, onto a paved surface and eventually into a storm drain. You can use water from your rain barrel to fill bird baths, water indoor, garden or container plants and clean garden tools. Rainwater is naturally soft and contains no minerals and chemicals and when used for watering plants, rainwater will leave no calcium carbonate residue. Rain barrels help lower water costs. It is estimated that 40% of water used during summer is for lawn and garden maintenance. Rain barrels reduce stormwater runoff resulting in fewer pollutants in our storm water and less potential for localized flooding.
For the class on April 19, you can choose to either make a rain barrel at the class and take it home with you for a $35 materials fee or you can come and observe the workshop free of charge and take home the informational material to make a rain barrel at home with products you have already. Space is limited and pre-registration by April 17 is required. To register, visit www.lawrenceks.org/public_works/stormwater/rain_barrel_workshop for more information or call (785) 832-3136. Contact Shawna Trarbach for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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