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How Do I Buffer My Stream?

If you are ready for a customized streamside buffer planting for your property, get in touch with our stream buffer experts through our contact form or call 717-705-2820 to arrange a visit.

Free assistance and funding are now available for good stewards like you!

Love Your Stream? Don’t Leave It Unprotected.

Your land, your legacy, your natural resources -- you can protect them all by planting a streamside buffer.

If a waterway runs through your land and your not familiar with stream buffers, they’re a natural solution for cleaner water and healthier land.

Buffering your stream shows your neighbors that you are a good steward of your land and how much you value your community.

Streamside buffers are trees and shrubs deliberately planted along any size of waterway.

These buffers deliver significant value to all Pennsylvanians, so free assistance is being made available to property owners like you.

A tree with many white blooming flowers on the end of its branches
Native plants thrive in your local area, are easier to care for, and provide an excellent food source and habitat for local species of wildlife.

Benefits of Streamside Buffers

Infographic showing symbols of trees, water, bee, and house. Text:Reduced erosion Improved habitats enriched landscape cleaner

  • Reduced erosion: Tree roots hold streambanks in place
  • Cleaner water: Trees and shrubs filter pollution
  • Favorable natural conditions for wildlife: Streamside buffers create better natural conditions for wildlife in the water, and on the land, including pollinators
  • Enriched landscape: Buffers add shade, privacy, and value protection for your property.

If a waterway of any size runs through your land, a streamside buffer can have a huge impact in your backyard and beyond -- especially when heavy rainfalls occur.

Research shows that buffered streams are two to eight times more effective in removing pollution from runoff.

Your streamside buffer also benefits your neighbors and community by fostering cleaner water and healthier land. Plus, good stewardship of your land has a positive impact on Pennsylvania’s natural resources.

A small herd of cows with black white coloring stand in an open field next to a singular tree.
For agricultural landowners, there are additional reasons to install buffers. They contribute to sustainable stewardship of farms, herd health management, and prevent erosion and soil loss reducing crops lost to flood damage.

Get Help Planting a Streamside Buffer

We want to help you plant your buffer! We can recommend an approach that is customized for you and your property -- and help find funding and support to complete the planting of your streamside buffer.

It’s even possible to plant things like nuts, berries, and willows in your streamside buffer so they can be harvested and sold.

To get started, get in touch with our stream buffer experts through our contact form or call 717-705-2820 to arrange a visit.

These materials are based upon work supported by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), under number 57473. USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. The views and conclusions contained in these materials are those of the authors and should not be interpreted as representing the opinions or policies of the U.S. government or NFWF and its funding sources.