MulchFest, the Parks Department’s annual event aimed at getting New Yorkers to “tree-cycle,” took place on Saturday and Sunday at various locations in the city.
As usual, there was a chipper stationed on Stuyvesant Town’s 20th Street Loop Road, where discarded Christmas trees got mulched one by one. The mulch made from the trees gets used in future city plantings, or if participants, like, they can take some home to use to make potpourri. Mulch helps spur tree growth by keeping roots warm and moist. The wood chips also add nutrients to the soil and helps prevent weeds.
On an average year, 25,000-30,000 Christmas trees get recycled. However, due to the extreme cold, the total amount of trees New Yorkers were willing to lug outside this year may have been lower than usual. On Monday, the Parks Department announced that MulchFest would be extended to the following weekend, although there would be no onsite chipping. Additionally, weather permitting, the Sanitation Department will collect and compost clean Christmas trees left at the curb through Saturday, January 13.
Photos by Kristy Ye-Ling