“Trees for the Bay” – buy a rain barrel, you may get a free tree!

Trees for the Bay2The Delaware Forest Service is again offering its “Trees for the Bay” Program.

Delaware residents who live in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed can get a $100 tree coupon* for every $57.88 rain barrel purchase (while supplies last).

The Delaware Forest Service is once again partnering with the Non-Point Source Program in the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s (DNREC) Division of Watershed Stewardship to offer its “Trees for the Bay” promotion to Delaware residents in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.


Why get a rain barrel?
Rain barrels are an innovative way to capture rainwater from your roof and store it for later use. Water collected from rain barrels can be used to wash cars, water lawns, flower gardens and indoor plants.

“Without a rain barrel, this water would run off your roof and become stormwater, picking up pollutants on its way to a storm drain, stream, lake, bay or ocean,” said Environmental Scientist Sharon Webb of the Division’s Nonpoint Source Program. “By using a rain barrel, you can lower your water bill, conserve well water in the dry season and reduce polluted stormwater runoff.”

Rain barrels come with all the components for quick and easy installation and winterization. Customers simply drill a small hole in their downspout (hole-saw bit included with purchase) and insert the barrel’s FlexiFit™ diverter. No horizontal cuts in the downspout are required; no additional parts, such as elbows or extensions, must be purchased. The included cover makes winterizing simple.gray rain barrel

For more information, call the Nonpoint Source Program at 302-739-9922, or email sharon.webb@state.de.us.

The 50- to 55-gallon granite-colored barrels are made from 25 to 35 percent recycled content. Regular retail price for these heavy-duty plastic rain barrels is $120 or more. However, by purchasing a large quantity of barrels, the Nonpoint Source Program can offer them to the public for $57.88 each. Payment can be made by check or money order to the “State of Delaware.”

And for every purchase at DNREC’s discounted rain barrel sale,  those who live in eligible communities will receive a voucher worth $100 toward the purchase of a qualifying tree(s)* at participating Delaware nursery and garden centers (while supplies last on a first come, first served basis).  Vouchers must be redeemed by May 5. Additional rain barrel purchases to qualifying residents will be eligible for additional vouchers. Voucher quantities are limited and will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis.

Discounted rain barrel sales that will include the free tree coupon vouchers will be held at these times and locations:

  • For New Castle County residents: Rain barrels will be available for pick up Tuesday, April 8, 2014 between 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (or until sold out) at the New Castle Conservation District office Maintenance Yard, 2430 Old County Road, Newark. Directions
  • For Kent County residents: Rain barrels will be available for pick up Wednesday, April 9, 2014 between 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (or until sold out) at DNREC’s State Fair Building located off Route 13 in Harrington at the north end of the Delaware State Fairgrounds just past the Centre Ice Rink. Directions
  • For western Sussex County residents: Rain barrels will be available for pick up Tuesday, April 15, 2014 between 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (or until sold out) at the Seaford Public Works Building, 320 Virginia, Avenue, Seaford. Directions
  • For eastern Sussex County residents: Rain barrels will be available for pick up Wednesday, April 16, 2014 between 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (or until sold out) at DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship Lewes Facility, next to the Lewes boat ramp at 901 Pilottown Road, Lewes. Directions

How do I know if I qualify for a tree coupon?
The program is open only to those who reside at addresses in Delaware located within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. To check if your address qualifies for the tree coupon program visit this website: http://de.gov/findmywatershed. If the area is colored pink where your address is located on the map, then your home or business is within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. If the color is “green” or “yellow” or “blue,” then you live in another Delaware watershed. You can still purchase a discounted rain barrel, but will NOT be eligible for the tree coupon.

Vouchers must be redeemed by May 5, 2014 at the following participating retail outlets only:

Willey Farms
4092 Dupont Pkwy
Townsend, DE 19734
(302) 378-8441

Elmer’s Market
13257 Seashore Highway
Georgetown, DE 19947
(302) 337-8110

Jeff’s Greenhouse and Gift Shop
7781 Main Street
Bethel, DE 19931
Phone: (800) 276-3420

Barton’s Landscaping/Lawn Co., Inc.
20689 Sussex Highway, Seaford, DE, 19973
Phone: (302) 629-9645

* Tree(s) can be purchased at participating retailers up to a maximum value of $100.
However, the following trees 
may NOT be purchased with the coupon.


Ash Any Pear species or variety
Northern Red Oak Norway maple
Leyland-Cypress Tree of Heaven
Hemlock Paulownia
Japanese black pine, Australian pine Mimosa
Any white barked birch White mulberry
American elm Chinese Elm

The Delaware Forest Service and DNREC’s Division of Watershed Stewardship both recognize the important role trees play in cleaning our air and water while enhancing the quality of life for Delaware’s residents. Trees reduce soil erosion and sedimentation, remove excess nutrients, and filter harmful pollutants before they make their way into the tributaries, streams, and rivers within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.  The Delaware Forest Service’s “Trees for the Bay” program is underwritten by federal funds designed to help communities meet the water quality goals outlined in the Chesapeake Bay’s Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP).

Find out what Delaware residents can do to help the Chesapeake Bay.

For more information, contact Kesha Braunskill at (302) 659-6704 or kesha.braunskill@state.de.us.