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Upper Quinault Tree Planting - Quinault River volunteers plant trees to save homes

Highlights in Conservation icon

Upper Quinault Tree Planting - Quinault River volunteers plant trees to save homes

This is a picture of Quinault River riparian floodplain and terraces, with old growth spruce, hemlock and Douglas fir. trees surrounding.Today these areas are dominated by alder.

Quinault River riparian floodplain and terraces, once the home of old growth spruce, hemlock and Douglas fir. Today these areas are dominated by alder.

Location icon
Grays Harbor, Quinault

Project Summary icon
A hundred years ago the Quinault River was lined with old growth spruce, hemlock and Douglas fir. When the land was cleared and converted to pasture, settlers did not realize the long term impacts to the watershed. Accelerated stream bank erosion destroyed one home in 2007, and more are threatened every year since. In March 2010, the Quinault River Committee approached Columbia-Pacific RC&EDD, seeking funding for 3,000 conifer seedlings. Columbia-Pacific immediately contacted Rayonier Northwest Forestry Resources who readily donated all of the trees for the project. The following weekend 12 volunteers spent their Saturday and Sunday planting trees to restore 12 acres of pasture land. Next year they intend to plant even more acres. Homeowners know it is not a quick or sure fix, but it is their first step towards healing the watershed.

Conservation Partners icon
Quinualt River Committee Rayonier Northwest Forest Resources Columbia-Pacific RC&EDD

Resource Challenges icon
Major resource challenge is stream bank erosion causing loss of home and property, and is an indicator of a watershed health problem. Tree planting is a simple way for homeowners to contribute to watershed healing. The Quinault River Committee, is seeking other measures to accelerate the healing, in addition to tree planting.

Conservation Program Used icon
Resource Conservation & Development Program (RC&D)

Innovations and Highlights icon
Most powerful tool used was leveraging; using RC&D to find the right partner who was willing to donate the trees.

Results and Accomplishments icon
12 acres of pasture planted to conifers in 2010. In future years, additional tree plantings are planned to restore watershed health.

Contact icon
Cindy Burton, USDA NRCS (Columbia-Pacific RC&EDD), (360) 249-5900 ext. 110

NRCS, Spring 2010