FREE SEEDLINGS Available to Qualified Landowners for Streamside Plantings
The application period for this program is now open. Qualifying private and public landowners may apply for a free bag of 25 tree and shrub seedlings for planting near streams, rivers, or lakes to help stabilize banks, protect water quality, and improve wildlife habitat.
“Small-scale streamside plantings can help decrease erosion, slow floodwaters, and protect fish and wildlife habitat,” said DEC Commissioner Seggos. “We encourage New York landowners with waterside properties to participate in DEC’s ‘Buffer in a Bag’ program to bolster our efforts to protect water quality and safeguard communities from flooding.”
To qualify, landowners must have property in New York State with at least 50 feet bordering a stream, river, or lake, and provide photos or a map of the planting location. Previous recipients are encouraged to reapply to continue to build riparian buffers. Applicants are eligible for one bag of 25 seedlings and recipients are chosen on a first-come, first-served basis. A total of 350 bags will be available statewide for this round of applications.
Seedlings are provided by DEC’s Saratoga Tree Nursery. Governor Hochul’s budget proposes increasing the EPF from $300 to $400 million, which would be the highest level of funding in the program’s history. The EPF provides funding for critical environmental programs such as land acquisition, farmland protection, invasive species prevention and eradication, enhanced recreational access, and water quality improvement.
Visit DEC’s website for more information about the application process and requirements. Contact with questions and visit DEC’s Trees for Tribs webpage to learn more.
If the District can be of any assistance in choosing trees or assisting with your application, please contact our office at (315) 782-2749.