Community Greening

cgConservation Montgomery organizes weekend tree planting events working with middle and high school students to plant young trees in communities where tree canopy has been shown to be low. This program engages youth to help increase tree canopy and to learn about the value of trees and forests in our ecosystem. Training sessions are held before each planting event. Since 2011, Conservation Montgomery has planted 70 trees in urban neighborhoods, sometimes partnering with Washington, DC-based Casey Trees.

The key goals and objectives of the Community Greening program are:

  • to reforest portions of subwatersheds of the Chesapeake Bay with a community tree planting project
  • reach out to youth and teach them the value of natural resource conservation and restoration – and that their work can make a difference in our communities
  • provide youth with engaging and productive community service where they can see an immediate result of their work and continue to maintain trees once they are planted.

The big picture goal of these projects is to show youth how their behavior and urban natural surroundings – upstream and in less obvious locations in the Chesapeake Bay watershed – can make a difference. We teach teens and their families that Montgomery County, Maryland is within the Bay watershed and a contributor to polluted runoff that drains to the Bay from our streams and creeks. Youth and families involved in our community tree planting project learn that reforestation of forested land in Montgomery County is key to managing urban runoff, keeping streams and creeks clean and restoring the Bay. Our Community Greening volunteers learn about the important role that trees play in the overall health of their communities.

One tree at a time — or one section of trees planted and maintained at a time — can lead to better communities. Volunteers also hear about green jobs and may be interested in learning more about horticulture, arboriculture, conservation or landscape design for a career.

We base our decisions on where to plant on the Montgomery County Tree Canopy assessment, which uses GIS data to identify tree canopy percentages in sections of the county. Click here to look at the canopy assessment set up by the Montgomery County Planning Department. We also explore requests from county residents who are interested in reforesting a section of their community. To contact us about a planting event, send an email to ConservationMontgomery@live.com

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