SCHUYLER LAKE – Approximately 440 trees and shrubs were planted by 10 volunteers along the edge of Herkimer Creek as it runs past Kathy & Tim Peters’ Schuyler Lake farmstead this morning.
“We need to build up over 10,000 acres of riparian forest buffer across New York to help solve the problem of pollution in the Chesapeake Bay,” said Lydia Brinkley, Riparian Buffer Forest Coordinator for the Upper Susquehanna Coalition. “Having trees and plants next to streams is one of the most effective practices for reducing runoff and creating habitats.”
After the Peters placed a conservation easement on their 22 acres last June, Otsego Land Trust suggested that they contact Brinkley about the Trees For Tribs program. “It’s hard to get landowners to want to plant trees,” said Brinkley. “It’s taking agricultural land out of production, and most people don’t want that.”
The DEC donated 110 River and Yellow Birch, Red Maple and White Pine trees, as well as 330 Pussy Willow, Elderberry, Red Osier Dogwood, Button Bush and Blueberry bushes. According to Brinkley, these plants will serve more as wildlife habitats than reducing runoff.
Last weekend, 900 plants were put along Oaks Creek, and Brinkley hopes to plant 15,000 trees in the watershed this year.