Thursday, April 04, 2013

Trees are the answer. What was the question?

Over 20 acres of open fields was recently converted to forest with the planting of over 1,600 trees on a new area of parkland along the Potomac River.

The property is White's Ford Regional Park which is a 295 acre property north of Leesburg with over a half mile of Potomac River frontage. This area will open to the public later this year with a launch site for canoes and kayaks. Part of protecting this half mile of river frontage is greatly expanding the riparian forested buffer. The benefits of creating expanded vegetative (forested) buffers along rivers and stream is great. It is one of the most effective methods of environmental protection available. The results of this kind of tree planting include:
  • Holding together the shoreline
  • Filtering storm water run off before it hits the river
  • Absorbing more of the rain fall so it does not need to run off into the river
  • Absorbing carbon in the air (reducing air pollution)
  • Cooling the area in the summer
  • Creating expanded wildlife habitat for flora and fauna
The White's Ford tree planting which was done in partnership with the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club (Cadillac Crew) included the area along the river as well as some upland area.

This is the first of many more tree plantings to come in the next five years. The Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority has set expanding riparian buffers and partnering with community groups to plant more trees on our parkland as major goals of the 2012 - 2017 Strategic Plan for the agency.

From protecting and enhancing water, air or ground, it almost doesn't matter what the question is, the answer is more trees will help!

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