In partnership with the city of Flint, Mich., Genesee Conservation District (GCD) is bringing urban forests back to a healthy state and educating residents in the process.

“One of the best benefits that has come out of this partnership is the response from residents,” GCD senior conservation coordinator Jeffrey Johnson said. “They are excited. The city didn’t have the budget to maintain and care for the trees the way we are now. I think the fact that they can see results is one of the biggest upsides.”

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) with GCD sparked the movement to form a partnership for tree maintenance across the city. Read more>>>


Caring for the canopy is a top priority of Winooski Natural Resources Conservation District (WNRCD). With 47 municipalities under its jurisdiction, WNRCD’s efforts have led to a collaboration with the Vermont Monitoring Cooperative (VMC), the University of Vermont Rubenstein School of the Environment (UVM), and the city of Winooski to support the city’s efforts to manage and maintain its urban forests.

“As the largest conservation district within the state, we understand the urban environment and the need to maintain green space,” WNRCD District Manager Corrina Parnapy said. “The health of our urban forests and environment are important to quality of life for residents and the protection of our natural resources.”

A key component of that support is a two-year ecosystem inventory and analysis, which took place in 2014-15 and selected 70 random plots, identifying attributes such as tree species, size and crown width; land use and ground cover of the plots; and potential future planting space. The data was used to estimate the number of urban trees in the city (58,600 providing 35.8 percent canopy cover) and quantify ecosystem services such as air pollution benefits and rainfall runoff interception.

“Urban trees are extremely important to water quality, air quality and stormwater controls,” Parnapy said. “The results helped identify the need for a management plan and an ordinance.” Read more >>>


Colorado - Conservation district assists riverbank stabilization project

The Rainbow Park and Portland Plant Riparian Restoration Project is helping to control Russian Olive and Tamarisk trees along the Arkansas River corridor, treat other invasive species with selective herbicides, and restore the riparian area along the river through willow and cottonwood pole plantings and seeding with native grasses.

“It’s helped save my land,” Georgia Romine told the Daily Record Cannon City News. Last year several Russian Olive trees were removed and revetment and boulders were added to Romine’s property to help with erosion. She has been working closely with the Fremont Conservation District and an NRCS soil conservationist to add trees and shrubs.

At Florence Park, more than 50 trees and shrubs have been planted this spring. Community volunteers have given time to the project, and the City of Florence has committed to keeping the trees and shrubs watered. Read more>>>

Maine - SWCD to host ‘low impact forestry workshop’

Through a low impact forestry workshop planned for June 28, the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District (PCSWCD) will provide educational programming on techniques and practices that can be used by Maine landowners to better and profit from their woodlots. The six-hour workshop will cover a variety of topics, including sustainable forest management and the importance of understanding the relationship between soils found in a woodlot and tree species that are best adapted for the site. Attendees will walk the property with presenters and discuss specific examples of management. Workshop presenters will include soil scientist David Rocque; Andrew Shultz and Adam Cates of the Maine Forest Service; and local forester Gordon Moore. Read more>>>

Michigan - District educates landowners on state forestland incentive program

The Gladwin Conservation District organized a workshop in June to educate landowners about Michigan’s Qualified Forest Program. This program can potentially reduce property taxes up to 40 percent. Landowners with more than 20 acres of non-homestead forestland are eligible to participate. This workshop also educated attendees on ways to reduce tax paid on timber sales revenue. Conservation districts in the state have assisted the Michigan Department of Natural Resources with the Qualified Forest Program for several years. Read more>>>

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