For Immediate Release: Friday October 23, 2015
More Native Trees & Shrubs Planted to Help Local Rivers and Wildlife
Pomfret, Vermont – The Connecticut River Watershed Council (CRWC) and project partners recently finished planting nearly 400 native trees and shrubs along more than 900 feet of riverbank in Orford, New Hampshire as well as in Bradford and Groton, Vermont.
The riverside plantings on the Wells, Waits and Connecticut rivers will help reduce erosion, improve water quality by filtering out pollutants, and increase habitat for fish and wildlife. The plantings build on work done by the CRWC and project partners, including a dam removal on the Wells River earlier this year.
The planting in Orford, NH took place at Trinity Farms, an organic vegetable farm, with funding from the USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service. “Establishing buffer strips along a river corridor which are not annually tilled for cropping and instead planting them into native trees and shrubs is the best way to naturally protect fields already located in a floodplain. This action still allows the floodplain to function the way it is intended to and enables farmers to continue to plant crops protected by the buffer,” said Beth Ann Finlay, Grafton County District Conservationist. “The Natural Resources Conservation Service applauds landowners interested in buffer plantings, thanks the CRWC for being a leader in coordinating this effort, and reminds folks that NRCS is able to provide financial assistance to help make buffers a reality on your land.”
Additional funding for these plantings was provided by a grant from the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation’s Upper Connecticut River Mitigation and Enhancement Fund. “This project met the criteria of the Upper Connecticut River Mitigation and Enhancement Fund,” said Kevin Peterson of New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, which administers the MEF. “A committee of 12 advisors reviews all grant proposals and recommends funding for projects that enhance water quality, restore riverbanks and shoreland resources, and protect wetlands in the watershed.”
Project partners included Beck Pond LLC, the Northwoods Stewardship Center, and the Bradford golf course – site of the planting on the Waits River. Species planted included Sugar, Red and Silver maples, birch, willows, dogwoods, elderberries and other native stock purchased from New England Wetland Plants Inc.
CRWC, a membership based nonprofit working to protect the four state watershed of the Connecticut River from “source to sea” through on-the-ground projects, public education and advocacy, has planted more than 11,000 native trees and shrubs along local rivers since Tropical Storm Irene ravaged the watershed four years ago.
Ron Rhodes, North Country River Steward
Connecticut River Watershed Council
“The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit.” – Nelson Henderson