News Flash…Sugar Maple Seedlings Now Available

I have some new sugar maple seedlings to give away for free to good homes (meaning you have to promise to plant them right away in a good spot according to the planting instructions I have posted).

There are 2 ways you can get them:

  1. You can come by and pick them up at your convenience if you are in the Chicagoland area.
  2. Or, I will mail them to you via Next Day Air if you are located anywhere in North America where these trees grow naturally.

This is the eastern United States from northern Maine south to Tennessee and from eastern New England west to Minnesota and southern Missouri. In southern states, the trees occur only at elevations between 3,000 and 5,500 feet. 

If you are interested, just send me an email at:  info@thesandymapleseedproject.com.

2018 Fall Festival at the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County

October 14th, 2018 at the Danada Equestrian Center, Wheaton, IL


We started early & didn’t stop ’til we ran out of trees!

We started handing out sugar maple seedlings at the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County’s 2018 Fall Festival about a 1/2 hour before the event opened. The trees were larger than last year, as they had had an extra year to grow. It was also was easier than expected to dig them up due to the heavy rains several days before which had softened the soil. Because of that, some of these trees had all their roots intact and some of these roots were 2-3 feet long! I think they should all do very well if planted right away and according to the Planting Directions.

Another 100 trees given away!

This photo came in the day after the event…

Looks like this family did a great job planting!

  • They found a good spot
  • Planted their tree right away
  • Used mulch
  • Even used a protective wire wrapping. Great idea! Really helps keep lawn mowers at a safe distance.
  • My favorite things: the smiles and the red sneakers! Soooo cute. 🙂
  • And what a beautiful tree, too!
  • If you got a tree, please send me a photo of it planted! I would love to see it. (info@thesandymapleseedproject.com)

The happy gentleman below was our very first “taker” at this event. This is always a special moment for me because it shows that people really are going to take trees home and plant them so all our hard work has been worthwhile.

All in all, it was a wonderful crowd, just like last year. Many people stopped by our booth and told us about the tree that they got from us last year or even the year before.  Their trees were all doing well except for one, where the tree was run over by a mower.

We ran out of trees 2 hours before the event was over, so we could have found even more homes if we had more. I am encouraged that so many people are “getting it” about the value of trees and all the good that these magnificent living things do for us. Really, we can not live without them.

Judy and her little tree

What a great photo that Judy sent it! Looks like a wonderful spot and I am so glad to see the wire and what looks like mulch! Don’t worry that the leaves are turning and falling off. That is what deciduous trees do each fall! This spring, the little tree will bud out nicely with a brand new batch of leaves and then probably grow a foot or two throughout the summer. Good job, Judy!

This makes 8,000 to 10,000

While it is hard to count so many trees over so many years, I believe it is safe to say that I have given away at least 8,000 to 10,000 sugar maple seedlings and about a dozen oak trees as well.

While it has been fun and rewarding and definitely worth it, it has also been a lot of hard work and a bit expense (pots, signage, booth setup, etc)! Since I have run out of seedlings, it is with bittersweet feelings that I call this project successfully completed and say good-bye. I will leave this blog up in case it encourages others to be brave and try to do something on a personal level to help the Earth and the life-forms we co-exist with, but it is time for me to turn the page and start a new adventure.

Before I sign off for the last time…

My heartful thanks …

  • To everyone who got a tree, planted it, and are caring for it and teaching their kids to do the same.
  • To everyone who made a donation to help cover the costs.
  • A very special thanks to all my dear friends (Marie, Bonnie, Ann, Karsten, Rob), Steve Tiwald at the Green Earth Institute, Jim Kleinwachter at The Conservation Foundation, the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, the Brownies, USBank, and countless others who helped in one way or another to dig, carry, hand out trees, or even just give much-needed advice and support. I could not have done this without each of you!
  • For this last event, special thanks to Bonnie, who worked by my side for 2 full days.  You are awesome! I will send you a big bag of Epsom Salt so you can soak in a hot bath–you deserve it!)
  • To the Foresters of the City of Wheaton and the City of Naperville for taking some of the seedlings and planting them and for providing free mulch.
  • To the Veggie Fest folks and the DuPage Forest Preserve (especially
    Wayne Zaininger) for generously letting me attend their events at no charge over the years!

Bye everyone and please remember to send some photos of your planted seedling! It will make my day! (info@thesandymapleseedproject.com)

 

2017 Fall Festival at the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County

Map

We had a really wonderful time again at the 2017 Fall Festival at the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County! Here’s the map showing the location of where people will be planting:

Tree Planting Location from the 2017 DuPage Forest Preserve Fall Festival Event
Tree Planting Location from the 2017 DuPage Forest Preserve Fall Festival Event (click to view full size interactive map to find your dot) This is just a small portion of the entire map, so click above to see the full interactive version.

Click here to view an interactive version of the map.

Photo

Here are photos of some of the wonderful people who pledged to plant a tree:

Photos from people who planted a Sugar Maple Tree from Veggie Feist 2017

Here are some great photos and stories that people have sent in. They tell the story of the impact of the sugar maple seedlings better than I possibly could! Check back every so often, as I will add more photos at the end, as they come in.

First, I wanted to include this note from Phyllis B. because it really shows how good deeds can sometimes have a ripple affect!

Good morning Sandy, planting of Maple Trees is such a wonderful idea.  I gave my plant to a young lady and her to young sons.  I was standing in line and over heard her talking to her sons how she wish she had gotten one for them. (They were all gone)  I was planning to take my tree back to CA with me.  So instead I shared it with them.

Thank you,

Phyllis B.

Hi Sandy, We planted the maple tree the second we came home The kids couldn't wait and they are checking up on it everyday and watering it every other day Thanks a lot for teaching my kids to love the environment Have a lovely day Randa
Hi Sandy, We planted the maple tree the second we came home The kids couldn’t wait and they are checking up on it everyday and watering it every other day Thanks a lot for teaching my kids to love the environment Have a lovely day Randa.

What cute kids!
What cute kids!

They still have their tattoos from Veggie Fest!
They still have their tattoos from Veggie Fest!

 

We received the seedling on Saturday at the Veggie Fest and planted it the next day on Sunday. We planted it in our back yard in Naperville. We put chicken wire around it to protect it from the rabbits. ☺ Thank you! Lori
We received the seedling on Saturday at the Veggie Fest and planted it the next day on Sunday. We planted it in our back yard in Naperville. We put chicken wire around it to protect it from the rabbits. ☺
Thank you!
Lori

Planted in Morgan Park, Chicago, Sherilvon
Planted in Morgan Park, Chicago, Sherilvon

Good morning!<br /> Here is the picture. My kids where so happy to plant it. <br /> Nurith
Good morning!
Here is the picture. My kids where so happy to plant it.
Nurith

Nurith, Thank you so much for the photos and the kind words! These are wonderful pictures and cute kids! Will post right away. Sandy
Nurith, Thank you so much for the photos and the kind words! These are wonderful pictures and cute kids! Sandy

Hello , thanks for the maple tree. Our seedling is planted in the back of our home in Hobson Oaks in Naperville, Illinois. In the future we hope it will provide shade and a beautiful orange canopy.
Thanks for the maple tree. Our seedling is planted in the back of our home in Hobson Oaks in Naperville, Illinois. In the future we hope it will provide shade and a beautiful orange canopy.
Joseph G. 

It looks beautiful, Joe!
Sandy

I think it is going to thrive in our little forest area! Jane It certainly looks happy right now. Best of luck and thanks for planting a tree! Thanks! Sandy
I think it is going to thrive in our little forest area!
Jane

It certainly looks happy right now. Best of luck and thanks for planting a tree! Thanks!
Sandy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Veggie Fest 2017 – A Huge Success!

There’s no doubt about it–Veggie Fest 2017 was a huge success! Tens of thousands attended this year — more than any other year. The food was delicious, the bands were fabulous, the speakers were great! Despite the large crowd, there seemed to be happiness, peace, and good will everywhere. I couldn’t help but think that this is the way America should be!

Veggie Fest 2017 August 12 & 13 at Illinois Benedictine University, Lisle, IL
Veggie Fest 2017 August 12 & 13 at Illinois Benedictine University, Lisle, IL

This year our booth was right next to the entrance, so we were swamped from the start. We ran out of trees on Saturday at about 5:00 pm. Then, Sunday morning, we potted up a whole bunch more trees which we ran out of those at about 1:00 pm. Throughout the day, we kept potting up more trees and bringing them over in batches, handing them out as fast as they arrived.

A lovely lady who grows food for her community in her garden. Now she will have a tree there, too!
A lovely lady who grows food for her community in her garden. Now she will have a tree there, too!

 

We finally ran out of paper cups, so we had to quit. But we still had people signing up to get an email about the next time we’re going to do this. Here are photos of just a few of them.

A Mom and Dad with their 2 cute kids and 1 new tree. They'll have their hands full for a while!
A Mom and Dad with their 2 cute kids and 1 new tree. They’ll have their hands full for a while!

A happy, colorful couple. I have to smile just looking at them. They were a delight to talk to.
A happy, colorful couple. I have to smile just looking at them. They were a delight to talk to.

A gentleman with a GREAT T-Shirt who really "gets" the tree thing.
A gentleman with a GREAT T-Shirt who really “gets” the tree thing.

A photo of a lovely mother and daughter

 

And here are some more of the wonderful people who will be planting trees:

A delightful lady who looks like she may be just realizing that she is going to be doing a lot of planting!
A delightful lady who looks like she may be just realizing that she is going to be doing a lot of planting!

This smart woman who used her Veggie Fest bag to carry her new tree, as did many others.
This smart woman who used her Veggie Fest bag to carry her new tree.

Here’s a look at some of the places where the seedlings will be planted. 

2017 Veggie Fest Tree Planting Locations (click to view full size interactive map to find your dot) This is just a small portion of the entire map, so click above to see the full interactive version.
2017 Veggie Fest Tree Planting Locations (click to view full size interactive map to find your dot) This is just a small portion of the entire map, so click above to see the full interactive version.

 

I want to thank everyone who stopped by and picked up a seedling and promised to plant it! I think there were were over 700 of you, roughly, making this the best give-away event EVER for me!

And a very special thanks to all my dear friends who pitched in so many times to make this possible. They did everything from digging and potting, to driving back and forth, to lending equipment and moral support, to shopping, setting up the booth and taking it down, scrubbing the bins, and even donating the booth. Here are just a few that I have photos of:

Bonnie potted trees and worked the booth. She was shy at first, but got on board quickly and seemed to enjoy it by the end. She was enormously helpful by the end.
Bonnie potted trees and worked the booth. She was shy at first, but got on board quickly and seemed to enjoy it by the end. She was enormously helpful.

Ann potted and shopped and in general did everything with great gusto. She's our most experienced gardener.
Ann potted and shopped and in general did everything with great gusto. She’s our most experienced gardener.

 

Rob worked tirelessly to dig and pot up trees. We thought we had more than enough in advance (these bins are laid out 3 deep!), but this amount only lasted until Sat afternoon.
Rob worked tirelessly to dig and pot up trees. We thought we had more than enough in advance (these bins are laid out 3 deep!), but these only lasted from Sat morning until Sat afternoon.

Karsten (in yellow shirt) dug, potted, watered, helped set up, and drove back and forth with more trees. He also helped clean out the equipment we borrowed.
Karsten (in yellow shirt) dug, potted, watered, helped set up, and drove back and forth with more trees. He also helped clean out the bins we borrowed so we could return them clean.

Thanks also to Steve Tiwald of the Green Earth Institute for lending much needed bins as well as moral support and encouragement.

And last but by no means least, thanks go out to the Veggie Fest people for donating the booth again this year so that we could reach so many people! The Veggie Fest staff was incredibly nice! They helped us move stuff in a golf cart before and after the event. They brought us buckets full of water which we didn’t even ask for–they were very thoughtful and always there when we needed something!

Sandy registering people in the booth at Veggie Fest
Sandy happily giving away sugar maple seedlings in the booth at Veggie Fest 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

VeggieFest Tree Planters: Find Your Dot!

Here is a cool map that shows all the people who registered and got a free sugar maple tree at VeggieFest 2017 on August 12 & 13 at Illinois Benedictine University.

To find your dot,  CLICK HERE or on the map to see the full-size interactive version of this map that you can scroll and zoom. To find your own dot, scroll over and zoom into your general area, then click on any dot to see the details.

2017 Veggie Fest Tree Planting Locations (click to view full size interactive map to find your dot)
2017 Veggie Fest Tree Planting Locations (click to view full size interactive map to find your dot)

Please note: the image above is just a small portion of the entire map, so click above to see the full interactive version.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plant Your Tree and Send in a Photo!

Hi! If you came to VeggieFest 2017 and got a free sugar maple tree (or 2 or even 3), please remember to plant it as soon as possible according to the directions we handed out (which are also on this website), then send a photo of it to:

info@thesandymapleseedproject.com

Thank you so much for doing your part to plant a tree, clean the air, and cool the earth.

If you did not get your free tree yet, or you’d like another, check back here soon as we will be posting info on our next two Give-Away events soon. One will be in Sept and the other in Oct, 2017.

Up & Coming Tree Give-Aways

Although we ran out of trees to give-away at Veggie Fest, we will have more soon! Here are our next give-away events:

 

U.S. Bank Branch 1230 S Naper Blvd, Naperville, IL 60540
U.S. Bank Branch 1230 S Naper Blvd, Naperville, IL 60540

US Bank Branch
Sat am in September
(exact date tbd)
9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
1230 S Naper Blvd, Naperville, IL 60540

Look for us along the parkway.

Sandy and her puppy Callie giving away sugar maple trees at US Bank, Naper & 75th St Branch, Naperville, IL
Sandy and her puppy Callie giving away sugar maple trees at US Bank, Naper & 75th St Branch, Naperville, IL

 


 

Forest Preserve District of DuPage County
Forest Preserve District of DuPage County

Danada Fall Festival
Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017
11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Danada Equestrian Center
3S507 Naperville Road, Wheaton, IL 60189. Free admission.

Come spend a fun-filled, leisurely autumn day outside surrounded by the red, orange, yellow, brown and green hues of autumn. This annual festival attracts thousands of visitors. Events include hayrides, equestrian demonstrations, barn tours, musical entertainment, children’s activities, food and more.

Info: www.dupageforest.com 630-668-6012

Map of Danada Fall Festival 2017
Map of Danada Fall Festival 2017