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Volunteers Plant 100 Trees in Lambertville

Sixteen volunteers recently gathered to plant 100 native trees and shrubs along a new section of the Lambertville Nature Trail. The group, including Lambertville Mayor Andrew Nowick, planted a variety of native trees and shrubs including eastern red cedar, flowering dogwood, sweet birch, white oak, and eastern redbud. These trees and shrubs will help to reduce flash flooding from this hillside neighborhood, filter and cool air and water, and provide important wildlife habitat.

The planting is the result of a unique partnership between the Sourland Conservancy, the Lambertville Parks and Recreation Commission, and Lambertville Goes Wild. The Sourland Conservancy provided the plant material and deer protection. Their staff provided volunteer training, Lambertville Parks and Recreation commissioned the trail extension and helped to promote the event and plant the trees, and Lambertville Goes Wild offered advice on the species planted. T&T Tree Service, Inc. donated wood chips to surface the new trail entrance at Jean Street.

The Parks and Recreation Commission is in the process of expanding the Lambertville Nature Trail, located on the Music Mountain hillside that is the backdrop for Ely Park. The original trail was an Eagle Scout project completed in January 2007. The trailhead is on Alexander Avenue. From there, the trail traverses the hillside, terminating at York Street, for a total distance of about .34 miles. Many residents enjoy using the trail for nature walks, dog walking, or just to explore.

The current project adds a new loop through an adjacent city-owned parcel on Music Mountain, along with a new entrance on Jean Street. There is also a new branch of the trail that extends via switchbacks to Ely Park. The length of the trail system when complete will be just under 1.25 miles, including the original and new sections. Most of the new trails are walkable now.

“We are tremendously grateful to these hardworking volunteers,” said Rob Aluck, Sourland Conservancy’s stewardship director. “The community has really come together to help restore the forest. This project really gives me hope for the future.” Aluck joined Conservancy interns Renee Galimba and Walt Emann in training the new volunteers in proper planting technique to ensure the trees’ healthy growth, and assisted with planting. Conservancy staff and volunteers have planted more than 39,000 trees in the 90-square-mile Sourland Mountain Region since 2020. 

Those with questions or comments about the forest restoration project should contact the Sourland Conservancy at info@sourland.org or visit sourland.org/act-ash-crisis-team. Questions or comments about the trail project should be addressed to the Lambertville Parks and Recreation Commission at recreation@lambertvillenj.org

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