This summer’s strong and windy storms had a wonderful silver lining in the form of a HUGE pile of FREE nutrient-rich mulch made from the chipped-up felled branches of trees in Greenwood. We’ve made trips to playgrounds all around Brooklyn and Queens with carloads of this natural treasure, but our capacity to distribute is limited.
If you have tree pits, paths, outdoor classrooms, weedy gardens, or raised beds in need of mulch before winter, Greenwood allows cars to enter through the front gate, drive up next to this mulch pile and bag up as much as you can take. All you need is bags (we tend to use and reuse garbage bags but I’ve seen people using reusable bags as well), a shovel, and gloves for scooping the mulch. A truck is ideal, but I’ve been able to fit up to 12 bags in a small car. A hand-truck or dolly borrowed from your custodial engineer might also be useful in moving the mulch into the playground.
Other sources of mulch include purchasing from Garden Centers or the once-a-year “mulchfest” run by NYC Parks to chip post-holiday Christmas trees.
Greenwood earned status as an accredited Level III Arboretum (one of only 29 in the world), hosting some of the oldest trees in the city. So be sure to pack a lunch and have a walk around the grounds before or after you’ve collected some mulch. Stay tuned for more on their excellent environmental education resources.