Volunteers needed to plant trees

Carpenter Ranch is getting a landscaping face-lift and the Nature Conservatory of Colorado is looking for volunteers to do some planting.

More than 4,000 trees and shrubs will be planted at the Carpenter Ranch, 4 miles east of Hayden, and two nearby properties from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 29-30.

The new trees are part of a project to slow further bank erosion along the Yampa River, according to Betsy Blakeslee, volunteer and education coordinator at Carpenter Ranch.

"It's an effort to re-vegetate the bare banks along the Yampa," said Blakeslee. "The more volunteers we have, the more bare banks we can cover."

In 1998, a similar project by the Nature Conservancy of Colorado and 60 volunteers successfully planted more than 2,000 trees and shrubs along the river.

Different groups and organizations from surrounding communities have already been helping with the project. Students from the Colorado Northwestern Community College and 4-H have planted many trees, according to Blakeslee.

The trees and shrubs were collected on Carpenter Ranch and the Yampa River Preserve by volunteers. They are between 12 and 14 inches tall. Volunteers should wear work clothes; they will be doing a lot of digging and bending. A sack lunch will also be needed and anyone with shovels or post-hole diggers is asked to bring them.

Volunteers are welcome to take a self-guided tour of Carpenter Ranch. Children must be closely supervised and pets should be left at home.

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