MIDDLETOWN, NJ - Free tree seedlings will be available to Middletown Township residents in the month of April as part of the New Jersey Tree Recovery Campaign. This program helps communities replace trees damaged or destroyed by Superstorm Sandy.

On Wednesday, April 16 and Thursday, April 17 residents will be able to pick up tree seedlings from 9 am to 3pm at the Public Works Department, 52 Kanes Lane, and the Recreation Department, 180 Main Street in Port Monmouth. Seedlings, will be provided in bundles and be available on a first come, first served basis while supplies last. Quantities may be limited to one bundle per household. Please note seedlings are bare-rooted and are not wrapped. They may be wet or muddy. Please plan accordingly.

Instructions on how to store, care for, and plant them will also be provided. Seedlines vary in length from two to four feet tall.  The guides help residents choose the right place on a property to plant a tree while keeping in mind the tree’s full-grown size in the future. Residents should plant the seedlings within two days after pick-up in order to prevent the roots from drying out.

The goal of the Tree Recovery Campaign is to distribute over 500,000 tree seedlings to New Jersey residents over the course of the next five years. It is a joint effort between Middletown Township the New Jersey State Forestry Services Community Forestry Program, The State Forest Nursery, New Jersey Soil Conservation Districts, Sustainable Jersey, and the Arbor Day Foundation. Arbor Day Foundation, FedEx, and BJ’s Wholesale Club provide financial support for the program.

When properly planted and maintained, trees can be assets to a community. They improve the visual appeal of a neighborhood or business district, increase property values, reduce home cooling costs, remove air pollutants, and provide wildlife habitat, among many other benefits.

If you have any questions please contact Middletown Public Worksat (732)-615-2109.