The annual Rice County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD)Tree and Shrub sale is now open. You can order many different species of trees and shrubs for any conservation projects you have in mind. Most of the stock is bare-root but some are available as potted species. The trees and shrubs you ordered usually arrive about the second week in April. You can order trees and shrubs on the Rice County SWCD Online Store or call 507-332-5408.

I don't mean to say anything bad about all those gardening and mail-order catalogs but when you order from a local SWCD you know you will get quality stock plus the trees and shrubs will be well adapted for our Minnesota climate. It can be discouraging to plant a tree and have a really cold winter come along in a few years and realize it was not able to survive a tough Minnesota winter!

In addition you have staff at the SWCD that can offer advice on what species of trees and shrubs you may want to plant for the project you have in mind. For larger projects like windbreaks many have access to tree planters for rent which can save you a lot of time and work! You may want to ask about programs that have cost share funds available.