Two college students ask for help planting trees in Beloit

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Hillary Gavan/Beloit Daily News Aga Jarzabek and Catherine Krol (not shown) are raising funds to purchase trees for two upcoming tree planting events. They hope to replace trees which died from emerald ash borer infestation.

BELOIT - Two Beloit College students need your help planting more trees in Beloit.

Aga Jarzabek and Catherine Krol are raising funds to purchase trees for two upcoming tree planting events - Saturday, Oct. 28 at Hinckley and Summit parks at 2 p.m.; and at Riverside Park on Saturday, Nov. 4 at 2 p.m.

The students have already raised $2,000, but need to raise another $2,000 to meet their goal of planting 30 trees in the parks. They also need volunteers to help dig and plant at the events.

Those who wish to make a donation or volunteer should contact Jarzabek at 773-966-8185 or email her at treesforbeloit@gmail.com. The donations are tax deductible.

The students have been working with Beloit's Department of Public Works to plot out the locations of the trees and have received support from Visit Beloit. They hope to help replace ash trees which died due to emerald ash borer infestation.

"Ash trees make up about 10 percent of Beloit's urban forest, and they are all dying because of emerald ash borer," Jarzabek said.

Jarzabek rode around with Beloit Department of Public Works (DPW) Forestry Supervisor Michael Ferger to decide where each of the 30 trees will be planted. Beloit DPW is also helping with the planting at the upcoming events.

Visit Beloit has offered some financial support as well as local businesses.

"DPW is going to take care of trees following the planting and provide us with supplies," Jarzabek said. Jarzabek said they will be planting mostly shade trees and some ornamental trees.

Jarzabek, who is from Chicago, said she's impressed with Beloit's urban forest. Many of the trees are large, healthy and lining streets in a beautiful way. She is excited to one day drive by and see all the trees growing which will be planted at the upcoming events.

Krol and Jarzabek started creating tree tags to put on Beloit's trees this spring. Each tag gave fun facts about the tree as well as information on the financial impact of the tree such as electricity saved through shading, carbon reduction and water runoff reduction. The two student tagged a total of 40 trees around Beloit.

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