Establishing Riparian Buffer Zones | CREP
The Treessentials Company is an integral part of Riparian Buffer plantings for the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP.) This program, a partnership of private landowners with state and federal agencies seeks to protect environmentally sensitive land, decrease erosion, restore wildlife habitat and protect ground and surface water. Wherever trees and shrubs are planted toward these goals you’ll find Treessentials Company leading the way.
Bald Cypress RestorationIn the 1800s the baldcypress tree (Taxodium distichum) covered much of the shoreline around Lake Pontchartrain in southern Louisiana. In fact it was one of the dominant timber trees found throughout the Gulf Coastal Plain, the Atlantic Coastal Plain and Lower Mississippi River Watershed. The baldcypress produced very valuable and merchantable timber. It was a preferred building material because of it’s rot resistance and was logged extensively. Today, researchers at Southeastern Louisiana University (SELU) are working to restore the baldcypress as a means for protecting Louisiana wetlands.
On Jones Island, in Lake Maurepas, 50 miles north of New Orleans LA, 36,000 baldcypress seedlings are being planted on 180 acre site as a part of a gas pipeline mitigation settlement. This restoration effort will provide habitat for a greater variety of wildlife and vegetation and will help stabilize the island’s threatened shoreline.
Establishing tree seedlings under good conditions is a challenge. However when you take into account the wind, flood waters and marsh plant competition it is easy to understand why the baldcypress did not regenerate. But the #1 threat to cypress seedlings is the nutria (Myocastor coypus), a large aquatic plant eating rodent. In the past tree seedlings were just added nutrition for the nutria.
Researchers at SELU found that the Tubex Treeshelters not only helped protect these vulnerable seedlings from adverse weather conditions, but they also shielded them from hungry nutria. The Treessentials Company is looking at this project as the first step towards improving the coastline habitat by increasing the numbers of this great tree.
Mine Land ReclamationThe Pennsylvania Mine Reclamation Project 20 was one of the most ambitious tree planting programs in the country. This program was a cooperative effort involving the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP,) Bureau of Mining & Reclamation, the Bureau of Abandoned Mine Reclamation, and the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation & Natural Resources (DCNR) Bureau of Forestry. For the past 20 years these agencies assisted private landowners in reforesting abandoned strip mines.
Part of the Project 20 effort includes restoring abandoned mines to hardwoods that existed before the coal mining process. Steep slopes, aggressive grass competition, large areas exposed to drying winds and a large deer population challenge restoration efforts on these sites.
On a site, located outside of Dubois, PA a mix of hardwoods (oak, green ash, white ash, black cherry, and crabapple) and conifers (Virginia pine, red pine, Norway spruce) will be planted. A total of 380,000 seedlings were planted on site. Planters installed Tubex treeshelters from Treessentials Company to protect against deer browse and promote growth. Foresters reported survival rates over ninety percent even in the face of one of the areas worst droughts in 100 years.
Project 20 is an excellent example of how the Treessentials Company helps states in rehabilitating damaged wild areas. Future generations will benefit greatly from the foresight of the Pennsylvania DCNR and DEP, and the dedication of its foresters.