What does it take to plant a few trees -- or 200 to be exact? On Saturday, May 13th, it took plenty of shovels, a couple piles of mulch and, most of all, over 40 volunteers ready to dig.
High school students and community members joined Turtle Creek Watershed Association and the Municipality of Monroeville at Valley Park to find an acre of land already covered with 200 colored flags marking 200 spots for new potted and bare-root trees.
Working alongside Turtle Creek, volunteers canvassed the acre and moved from one flag to the next, digging a hole, placing a tree or root provided by Tree Pittsburgh and Musser Forests in the ground and securing tubing or fencing around each.
Soon, flags turned into holes, then into leafy brown stems and finally into well-protected trees that will grow to protect the stream they sit beside.
Instead of seeing bare ground or ground covered with invasive species bordering the stream, you’ll find patches of mulch housing white tubes or wire fences. It may not look like much now. But year by year, each tree will filter pollutants, control floods, stabilize an eroding streambank and provide habitat for fish and wildlife.
Multiply those benefits by 200. What do you get? Better water quality for generations to come.
This is just the beginning.
Over the next five years, we’ll plant a total of ten acres of trees along streams in Allegheny County as part of a Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) grant award.
Imagine 10 acres just like Valley Park: Land, trees and water teaming together all at the hands of a couple dozen volunteers on a Saturday morning.
Join us in the fall at South Park for our next planting as we continue, tree by tree, to work towards better water.