A time to plant: Oaktober at the Ladd Arboretum

Oaktober logo from Chicago Region Trees Initiative

We will be celebrating Oak Awareness Month on Saturday, October 7, at the Evanston Ecology Center’s third annual Oaktober Festival. “Oaktober” is a statewide effort to raise awareness of the value of the region’s native oak ecosystems. Oak trees are not only beautiful and long-lived—they also are the most important tree for birds and butterflies.

During this year’s festival, we will complete the first phase of the North Shore Channel Habitat Project as we plant dozens of wildflowers and grasses along the channel banks, and you are invited to help. Bring gloves and a trowel if possible, or you can use ours.

The Sullivan Sisters in 2015A city forester will lead a walk through the arboretum that highlights oaks and other trees that thrive in this area. Natural Habitat Evanston and the Evanston North Shore Bird Club will be there with information about migratory birds, native trees and shrubs to plant at home, and some of the invasive plants they can replace.  There will be face painting and outdoor activities for young children—and bluegrass music by Evanston’s very own Sullivan Sisters (you may have heard them performing at the Farmers Market).

The event runs from 1:00-4:00 pm. The Ecology Center is at 2024 McCormick Boulevard. Bike racks are on the side of the Ecology Center, and free parking is across Bridge Street.

That same afternoon, you can cross McCormick Boulevard and stop by the Eggleston Anniversary Food Forest & Orchard for Edible Evanston’s 3rd Annual Fall Food Forest Fun Fruit Fest. They’ll have fall apples and cider, homemade baked goods and jams, and folk music with Margaret Nelson.