150 Students and Volunteers Plant Trees for Wildlife

Migratory birds like the black and white warbler and ruby-throated humming bird are heading north. This spring, as they fly over Broward County, Florida, they may notice more than 10,000 new trees planted in the County since their last trip.

Tree Planting photo by Patrick Fitzgerald

Tree Planting photo by Patrick Fitzgerald

Last summer, the National Wildlife Federation and NatureScape Broward launched the Broward Habitat Connectivity Project with support from the Community Foundation of Broward which has multiple goals:

  • Create new islands of habitat for migratory birds travelling through urban Broward County by planting trees that will provide food and cover;
  • Provide interested residents in the neighborhoods surrounding the new “islands of habitat” free trees to plant in their own garden and strengthen the network of habitat in the area;
  • Plant native trees to increase tree canopy in the areas of Broward County that have the lowest percentages of tree canopy in the County;
  • Create outdoor learning laboratories for students to learn STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) subjects through hands-on environmental education in the newly planted areas;
  • Help meet specific County goals for increasing tree canopy and community resilience; and
  • Provide much needed shade at schools to escape the hot Florida sun!
Volunteers photo by Patrick Fitzgerald

Volunteers photo by Patrick Fitzgerald

A few days ago, at Lauderdale Lakes Middle School, a team of volunteers, parents, teachers and students worked to transform a 450 foot stretch of grass and weeds adjacent to the school track into a wooded habitat for migratory birds and an outdoor learning laboratory for students at the school.  While it will take time for these trees to grow, other 10-15 foot trees planted by the Broward County Tree Trust will provide shade and habitat this spring and summer.

Tree Planting photo by Patrick Fitzgerald

Tree Planting photo by Patrick Fitzgerald

Among those planting and helping were parents from the PTA, school teachers, staff and leadership, NWF Habitat Steward Volunteers, Broward County Master Gardeners, staff from Wells Fargo and more than 150 students. Together we removed weeds, spread mulch and top soil and planted 40 native Jamaican Caper and Simpson Stopper trees.

Additional habitats have been planted as part of the Broward Habitat Connectivity Project at the adjacent Oriole Elementary School, North Lauderdale Elementary School, Tequesta Trace Middle School, the Wingate Oaks Center, Lauderdale Elementary School, Larkdale Elementary School, Broward Central Regional Park and Quiet Water Park.

Learn more about how you can plant trees and garden for wildlife

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Photos by Patrick Fitzgerald


Learn more about how to create a wildlife habitat at your school

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