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Free trees available in Harford County from DNR program that aids the Chesapeake Bay

If you’re a land owner in Harford County and you have a stream, creek or wetland, you are eligible to receive a free package of seedling trees through a program designed to improve water quality in the Chesapeake Bay.

Known as the Backyard Buffer Program, its goal is to add more soil-saving and water-filtering trees on small properties along areas of the bay and its tributaries, according to a news release.

For decades, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Forest Service has organized tree plantings on large properties along waterways to filter rainwater, prevent erosion, provide fish and wildlife habitat, and to add natural beauty.

However, many small properties are in need of trees along waterways. To help fill the gap, the program gives a “Buffer in a Bag” to landowners at no cost.

The package contains 25 trees, five each of the following species — Sycamore, swamp white oak, river birch, hazelnut and American plum.

If you are interested in receiving trees from the program, contact the Forest Service, preferably by e-mail, at or by phone at 410-557-4587

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