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The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is offering its Backyard Buffer program in select counties around the state. Any resident with a drainage ditch, stream, creek or river flowing through their property or adjacent to a waterway could qualify for a free “Buffer in a Bag.”
Each bag contains approximately 25 native bare-root tree and shrub seedlings, which are suited for streamside conditions. Streamside buffers help preserve and improve water quality by absorbing excess nutrients, reducing sediment, lowering peak water temperatures and stabilizing stream banks.
This year, the species will include a mix of: swamp white oak, river birch, redbud, persimmon and hazelnut. Information on tree planting techniques, planting arrangements, tree maintenance, other native plant species suitable for streamside plantings and other topics will be available at the time of pickup.
Quantities are limited, and reservations for tree packets will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis. Requests will be taken by the Maryland Forest Service through late March 2017, with varying deadlines depending on county.
Queen Anne’s County is participating in the program – residents should call 410-260-8589 for more information: