The Foraging Forest

American Chestnut Restoration Project seedlings growing big and strong in the D&R Greenway’s native plant nursery. When they’re big enough to be transplanted, they will spread their roots in the Sourlands!

American Chestnut Restoration Project seedlings growing big and strong in the D&R Greenway’s native plant nursery. When they’re big enough to be transplanted, they will spread their roots in the Sourlands!

 

American Chestnut Restoration Project in the Sourlands

American Chestnut Restoration Project in the Sourlands

This page is under construction.  Please check back for news and information about this exciting project!

 Click Here to view Mike Aucott’s presentation from the American Roots fundraiser!

“Bringing Back the American Chestnut.”  The tragic history of this iconic tree, which once dominated Eastern forests but was virtually wiped out by an imported blight that first appeared in the early 1900s.

The challenges and varied strategies of the greater effort to help propel the tree over what researchers have called “the cusp of extinction” and to re-establish it in the North American forest.

Three organizations have partnered to introduce blight-resistant chestnuts to parks and preserves in the Sourland Mountain region.  Currently, the partners are planning two planting projects: St. Michael’s Farm Preserve and Hopewell Borough Park.

At St. Michael’s Farm Preserve, volunteers will plant American chestnut hybrids.

Volunteers will also plant American Chestnut hybrids in Hopewell Borough Park as part of a larger Foraging Forest project. In addition to chestnuts, the Sourland Conservancy and Mercer County Park Commission will create an educational space where visitors can learn about a variety of edible native plants through hikes and interpretive signage.  This project is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Simcha Rudolph Charitable Trust.

The American Chestnut Salvation Band (Bill Flemer, Mike Aucott and Carolyn Klaube) at D&R Native Plant Nursery - Photo by Laurie Cleveland

The American Chestnut Salvation Band (Bill Flemer, Mike Aucott and Carolyn Klaube) at D&R Native Plant Nursery - Photo by Laurie Cleveland

The Sourland Conservancy hosted “American Roots: a musical celebration of the American chestnut on October 12, 2018. This fundraiser was held in the Antique Barn at Cashel – a privately owned, beautifully restored barn on a working farm in Hillsborough Township, NJ. 

The Sourland Conservancy would like to thank our project partners, D&R Greenway Land Trust, Mercer County Park Commission and The American Chestnut Foundation, for helping to restore the American chestnut to public parks and preserves in the Sourland Mountain region of central New Jersey.

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