The Catskill Interpretive Center Riparian Buffer Demonstration Project Planted!

Posted on: November 15th, 2016 by Caroline Stupple

Setting the stage to plant all of the native plant material at the Catskill Interpretive Center.

In September 2016, a group of dedicated volunteers, together with the Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Program (AWSMP) and the Catskill Streams Buffer Initiative (CSBI) team, got together to remove some of the invasive species that had taken over the riparian (streamside) areas and out-competed native plants at the Maurice D. Hinchey Catskill Interpretive Center (CIC). The CIC received funding from AWSMP and CSBI to create a Riparian Buffer Demonstration project.  The main objectives for this project are removal of invasive species, planting of native plant material, and placing interpretive signage around the project area to provide education on the role of riparian buffers in maintaining habitat and stream health.


The team (from left to right), Bobby Taylor, Allison Lent, Jake Wedemeyer, and Tiffany Runge of Ulster County Soil and Water Conservation District, removed a whole lot of invasive plant material!



Upstream of the Riparian Buffer Demonstration area. The under story is covered in invasive species. This under story composition extended towards the demonstration area.


Riparian Buffer Demonstration project area cleared of invasive plants!


Earlier this fall the CSBI team removed the last of the invasive plant material and planted the riparian buffer with native plants.  Invasive species are fast growing, especially in disturbed areas, as such, as much plant material as possible was removed to give the native plants the best chance to establish themselves. Native riparian tree and shrub species form dense root systems that provide excellent bank stabilization in riparian zones, an area that is prone to erosion. This complex root system contrasts sharply to the shallow and fast-growing root systems that invasive species have, that are part of their ability to rapidly colonize an area. A restored riparian buffer provides natural habitat for native species and enhances water quality, an important resource for humans, native fish and macro-invertebrates.



Riparian buffer area cleared of invasive plants.


The native trees and shrubs are planted!
























The CIC Riparian Buffer Demonstration is a collaborative project between The Catskill Center, the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, NYC Department of Environmental Protection, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ulster County, and the Ulster County Soil & Water Conservation District.

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