A Place for Trees

Six volunteers planting trees at the edge of a woods



A Place for Trees: Riparian Restoration in the Deerfield River Watershed is a report prepared by students from the Conway School of Landscape Design. The report was commissioned by the Woodlands Partnership and the New England Forestry Foundation as part of a grant received from the U.S. Forest Service Urban and Community Forestry Program. The goal of the grant-funded project is to create a process to identify where climate-adapted tree planting could serve as a tool for resilience. The grant will also fund the implementation of multiple riparian restoration projects at sites identified by the project – partly funded by a Woodlands Partnership regional grant from the state Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs. The focus area for identifying parcels for tree planting is in six towns within the Deerfield River watershed: Ashfield, Charlemont, Conway, Hawley, Shelburne, and the village of Shelburne Falls. The process for identifying plantable sites is intended to be replicable in order to be applied to the rest of the Deerfield and Hoosic River watersheds in later years of the grant.

The first planting site that was selected was at South River Meadow in Conway. Around 70 trees and shrubs were planted at this location in late May 2022, funded by a matching grant from the state Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs. In April 2023, trees were planted next to a town bike path along the Hoosic River and at a nearby housing authority site at 330 Cole Ave. In October 2023, 50 trees were planted at Buckland-Shelburne Elementary School in Shelburne Falls. In June 2024, 16 trees were planted at Hawlemont Elementary in Charlemont along the Deerfield River.