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Free Tree Seedlings Available for Calvert County

Seedlings Available for Large or Small Trees

Photo of blooming red bud

Photo: “Budding Red Bud” by Ashley Stubbs

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources, along with Calvert Master Gardeners and the American Chestnut Land Trust, is offering free tree seedlings to landowners who have a creek, drainage ditch, stream or other waterway on or near their property through the Backyard Buffers program.

Trees and shrubs planted along waterways help improve water quality by absorbing excess nutrients, lowering peak water temperatures, reducing sediment and stabilizing stream banks.

Each “buffer in a bag” contains native bare-root tree seedlings suitable for planting in moist soil conditions. Two sizes of seedlings are offered: The shrub/small tree bundle of nine seedlings includes a mix of red bud, gray dogwood and indigo bush. The large tree bundle of 15 seedlings includes a mix of river birch, sycamore and chestnut oak. All seedlings are 1-year-old and approximately 8 to 14 inches tall. There is a limit of two bundles per household.

Maryland Forest Service staff will provide information on tree maintenance and planting techniques, in addition to suggestions on other good native species at the time of pickup. 

Requests must be received by April 10, 2019. Interested property owners should contact Liz Laher with University of Maryland Extension, Calvert, by email at, or by phone at 410-535-3662.

Bundles will be available for pickup in mid/late April. Quantities are limited so reservations will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis.