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      City encourages residents to plant trees

      Spring is the perfect time to start planting trees.

      Spring is the perfect time to start planting trees.

      â??Operation ReLeaf Residential Tree Programâ?? is a collaborative project the City of Ottumwa has with Alliant Energy and the Iowa DNR to encourage residents to plant trees.

      Sweetgum, Tuliptrees â??Emerald Cityâ?? and White Pine trees are available for residents to buy on a first-come first-serve basis at a discounted price. Ottumwans can purchase up to two trees per household for $25 a piece. The average retail cost per tree is $65, but Alliant Energy is using a grant to fund the remaining $30 on the pricetag of each plant.

      Ottumwaâ??s Public Information Officer Tom Rodgers says planting trees will beautify your landscaping and the city.

      â??The program is really good opportunity for folks to get outside, plant a tree, improve their property and bring a little more sense of togetherness to their neighborhoods,â?? Rodgers said.

      Trees must be picked up on April 20th between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. at Beach Ottumwa Parking lot located on 101 Church St. If youâ??d like to plant a tree in your yard hereâ??s a link to the purchase form, which you can bring to City Hall before the trees sell out.

      There are also order forms for residents who live in Afton, Marion and Sigourney.

      Only 195 trees are available, and Rodgers said they are selling quickly.