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SWC districts taking seedling, plant orders

Planters now muse on ground-breaking thoughts and plans for the soon-to-arrive growing season.

Area Soil and Water Conservation Districts and state facilities are getting stock ready and taking orders for trees, shrubs, wildflower seeds and assortments of gear and treatment products needed for spring planting.

County options

The Erie County Soil and Water Conservation District offers 34 species of trees and shrubs this season. Along with 1- to 3-year-old bare root seedlings, the district has added 4-year-old evergreen transplants and has introduced basswood to its list of broadleaf trees.

Orders can be made until March 16 for pickup April 14 at the Erie County Fairgrounds. Order forms and stock listings are available at the district office at 50 Commerce Way, East Aurora, by calling 652-8480, Ext. 5, or by visiting ecswcd.org.

The Niagara County's Soil and Water Conservation District sets its orders deadline at March 23 for pickup April 27 and 28. This year's items add thornless honeylocust to the deciduous tree selection. For details, call 434-4949 or go to niagaraswcd.com.

For conservation tree and shrub programs in Orleans County and nearby agencies, call (585) 598-5959.

The Chautauqua County Soil and Water Conservation District accepts orders until April 1, but many popular items in its 40-page catalog sell out fast. Order pickups can be made at either Jamestown or Dunkirk. For a copy of the district's brochure, call 664-3251, Ext. 3, or go to soilwater.org.

The Genesee County 2012 Conservation Tree and Shrub Seedling Sale offers special orders and a variety of planting accessories, birdhouses and signs along with many tree and seedling varieties. Orders can be placed up to April 1 for pickup at the county fairgrounds in mid-April. For details, call (585) 343-2362 or go to co.genesee.ny.us/docs/soilandwater/TreeOrderForm2012.

The Wyoming County SWCD has discontinued a tree/seedling program this year; however, Wyoming County landowners can order from agencies in either Erie or Livingston counties.

This year, Livingston County has restarted its program, which was suspended seven years ago. Orders for stock and products will be taken until March 16. Planters and landowners can pick up an order form at the district office, 11 Megan Drive, Suite 2, in Geneseo or call (585) 243-0043.

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State options

The Department of Environmental Conservation's Saratoga Tree Nursery offers landowners a choice of more than 50 tree and shrub species for planting on either public or private lands. Orders can be placed through mid-May. For details on this program, call (518) 581-1439 or go to dec.ny.gov/animals/9395.html.

A DEC School Seedling Program provides free stock that teachers and students can plant on school or community grounds. Teachers can apply to the state's Saratoga Tree Nursery before March 31. Interested educators may apply by calling (518) 587-1120 or online at dec.ny.gov/animals/9393.html.

email: odrswill@gmail.com