Thursday, September 21, 2023

Celebrate Riparian Buffers Month In October! With Penn State Extension, Chesapeake Conservation Landscaping Council, Penn State Agriculture & Environment Center

Riparian buffers, or streamside forests, are one of the best ways to protect and improve our local streams. They prevent erosion, reduce flooding, provide habitat for wildlife in and near the water, create recreational opportunities, and filter pollutants. 

They deserve to be celebrated!

Penn State Extension and the Penn State Agriculture and Environment Center partner with the Chesapeake Conservation Landscaping Council to celebrate October as Riparian Buffer Month. 

This is an opportunity for individuals and organizations to build awareness and familiarity of forested riparian buffers while sharing the applicability of these sustainable practices in a variety of settings. 

If you care about our streams, native plants, pollinators, the Chesapeake Bay, or love taking a walk in the woods, you are encouraged to take part in some way and participate in this month-long, focused effort to spread the word about the importance of trees planted along streams.

Upcoming Events

Check out these upcoming Penn State Extension events focused on riparian buffers taking place during October.

-- Volunteer Riparian Ranger Training - Saturday, September 30 in Grantville, Pennsylvania

Are you interested in adopting a project and helping to care for it on your own time throughout the growing season? Becoming a Riparian Ranger is the perfect opportunity to see a project grow and thrive over time as you help care for it.

-- Volunteer Riparian Buffer Plantings:  Help plant tree seedlings as part of a riparian buffer along small streams in various locations around Pennsylvania.

If you can't attend one of the above events, there are lots of other ways you can help celebrate Riparian Buffer Month--

-- Look for #BufferBanter and #RiparianBufferMonth posts from your favorite conservation organizations on social media. Like, Share, Comment, etc.

-- Create your own social media posts by taking photos of public riparian buffers near you or of your own streamside plantings. Use #RiparianBufferMonth. 2023 will feature a BeLeaf in Buffers social media challenge.

-- Donate to organizations that are planting and maintaining riparian buffers in your area, like your local watershed association

-- Attend a buffer-focused volunteer planting, maintenance day, or educational event

-- If you have a stream, think about planting or improving the buffer on your property.

-- Check out these great resources from Penn State on riparian buffers and learn all you can. 

Share what you learn with family and friends!

Other Resources

-- Roadside Guide to Clean Water: Riparian Buffers: A riparian buffer involves planting or retaining trees, shrubs, or tall grasses along the banks of rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds. Learn how to identify them with this factsheet.

-- Riparian Buffers: Pennsylvania's Best Solution for Protecting Its Waters: This article explains the benefits of using riparian buffers to protect the health of waterways, livestock, adjacent property, and all who drink and use water downstream.

-- The Role of Trees and Forests in Healthy Watersheds: Trees and forests are important for managing stormwater, reducing flooding, and improving water quality.

-- Riparian Buffers for Wildlife: Riparian buffers have lots of benefits and can be designed to benefit many types of wildlife.

-- Multifunctional Riparian Forest Buffers – More than Just Trees: Thoughtful selection of streamside trees and shrubs can have the added bonus of producing fruit, nuts, berries, or woody florals for profit or personal enjoyment.

-- Riparian Stabilization on an Acre or Less: This article discusses controlling water's edge erosion problems on small riparian sites.

-- Public Demand for Forest Conservation and Water Protection in PA: This article presents estimated economic values for forest/water protection programs in Pennsylvania using meta-analysis and benefit transfer techniques.

-- Growing Great Buffers: Growing Great Buffers is a series of short, helpful videos that describe step-by-step maintenance tasks needed for newly planted riparian buffers.

-- Backyard Stream Repair: This article links to lots of additional resources on how to manage and restore the stream in your backyard- including resources on how to plant a riparian buffer.

(Reprinted from the latest Penn State Extension Watershed Winds newsletterClick Here to sign up for your own copy- bottom of page.)

Upcoming Extension Educational Opportunities:

-- September 28: Dive Deeper Water Education Summit - Harrisburg

-- September 30: Riparian Buffer Maintenance - Dauphin County

-- October 4: Webinar - On-Lot Septic Systems and Groundwater Quality

-- October 28: Water Ways On Wheels - A Bike Tour In Lancaster County

-- October 30: Safe Drinking Water Clinic - Private Water Wells - Forest County

-- November 8: Webinar - Nitrogen In Groundwater, Where It Comes From, Health Risks

-- Penn State Extension Online Water Courses

Related Articles - Penn State Extension:

-- Celebrate Riparian Buffers Month In October!  With Penn State Extension, Chesapeake Conservation Landscaping Council, Penn State Agriculture & Environment Center  [PaEN] 

-- Master Watershed Stewards Celebrate 10 Years Of Making A Difference  [PaEN] 

-- Penn State Master Watershed Steward Coordinator Erin Frederick Honored By Lehigh Valley Business Council  [PaEN] 

-- Penn State Extension Future Master Watershed Steward Program Scaling Up  [PaEN] 

-- Introduce Students Ages 8-10 On How They Can Be Stream Doctors In The New Book -- Brooke Meets A Stream Doctor  [PaEN] 

Related Articles:

-- Register Now!  PA Statewide Watershed Conference Oct. 29-30 In Altoona  [PaEN]

-- DEP Blog: Abandoned Coal Mine Reforestation Initiatives Healing The Land  [PaEN]

-- ClearWater Conservancy’s Deb Nardone Resigns As Executive Director To Step Into The Role Of Executive Director For Foundation For PA Watersheds  [PaEN]

-- 17 PA Farmers, Organizations, Businesses Call On Congress To Expand Support For Agroforestry  [PaEN] 

-- Penn State Research: 87% Of Rivers, Streams Rapidly Warming, 70% Losing Oxygen; Aquatic Life May Be At Risk, Study Finds  [PaEN] 

-- DEP To Increase Monitoring, Develop Surface Water Standard For PFAS 'Forever Chemicals' After Study Shows 76% Of Streams, Rivers Contained At Least One Of These Chemicals  [PaEN]

-- DEP: Widespread Presence Of PFAS ‘Forever Chemicals’ In Fresh Water Leading Shale Gas Operators To Use Contaminated Water In Fracking Operations; DEP Doesn’t Require Routine PFAS Testing  [PaEN]

-- Forbes Trail Chapter Trout Unlimited Host Military Veterans And First Responders At Trout Fishing Event In Westmoreland County  [PaEN]

[Posted: September 21, 2023]  PA Environment Digest

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