On Thursday and Friday, October 1 and 2, the Illinois Professional Lawn Care Association joined Project EverGreen in its Healthy Turf Healthy Kids initiative to renovate green spaces to promote better health for children. Project EverGreen is an organization that is dedicated to preserving and enhancing green spaces in our communities.
The project took place at Boak Park in North Chicago. On the first day we applied a broadleaf weed control and fertilizer to the park and on the second day, we core aerated and overseeded the entire park. Several lawn care companies provided the equipment and labor to complete the work. On Thursday, Savalawn’s Jordan Orwig and Joe Nicklas supplied the fertilizer as well as the equipment. NuFarm America donated a specialized weed control product that allowed the seeding to take place the following day. Most broadleaf weed control products require a 6 week or longer waiting period between the application date and the seeding date. We were fortunate to use that product so that we could get the work completed.
On the second day, Nick Crosson and Nick Sadorf from Spring-Green Lawn Care core aerated the entire park. Tim Lungren from Dr. Green Lawn Care joined in by spreading 250 pounds of seed on the park. The seed was donated by National Seed. The combined effort of four different lawn care companies, all members of the Illinois Lawn Care Association, and the kindness of two suppliers, made this project possible.
Kari Cowart, Executive Director/Board Secretary and Brad Skof, Business Manager of the Foss Park District in North Chicago met us at the site on Friday. They were appreciative of the fact that the IPLCA picked North Chicago for the Project EverGreen work. The Foss Park Foreman, Jose Leguizamo, was on hand to assist with any logistical problems.
The hardest part of the project will be waiting to see how the core aeration, overseeding, fertilizer, and weed control all turns out. There are other projects that can be completed at the park that the IPLCA wants to tackle as part of this project. As with many parks in the Midwest, there are several large Green Ash planted on the park property.
Unfortunately, they have all succumbed to the Emerald Ash Borer infestation and need to be removed. Planting additional trees and dressing up the playground areas are projects for the future. Getting the work started is a step in the right direction.