Post-Fire Reforestation USA

Over 3.5 million trees planted.

Overview: Conifer forests in the American West are experiencing a novel disturbance regime – the occurrence of Mega-Fires. These wildfires consume more acres and are higher in severity than fires in the past. Over 20 million acres have burned in the last 10 years. Because these fires are so large, the potential for natural regeneration is often limited. In such cases, reforestation can help accelerate the rate of recovery of these forests – helping to rebuild biodiversity, wildlife corridors, and reduce erosion that negatively impacts streams and rivers.

We work with private landowners, tribal land managers, and State and Federal  public land management agencies to restore forests. This has included projects in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and California. Our staff, with family ties throughout the region, is passionate about helping the land and the people that value that land. 

While wildfire certainly has negative impacts on the emotional state of the people that it affects, we believe that these events also have potential to bring people together and promote a regional conservation ethos. We have brought thousands of youth, adult volunteers, and community groups to participate in tree planting. Through greater participation in restoring our forests, we are hopeful that we can promote land management approaches that result in healthier forests in the future and limit the re-occurrence of wildfire. 

Logistical

We have planted over 3.5 million trees in post-fire landscapes in the western United States. These efforts have been conducted in partnership with tribal agencies, US agencies, community groups, and schools. Our goal is to increase workforce capacity, nursery capacity, and overall restoration capacity by developing a network of grassroots hubs throughout the region and training restoration innovators through education and outreach programs.

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Ecological

We focus on treating the landscape by bringing together property owners throughout a specific fire-scar in order to promote landscape connectivity. For a large fire, it can be challenging to reforest the entire area, but by targeting 20 to 50% of the total area, we create islands of regenerative potential, trees that will produce seeds that will soon reforest the entire landscape.

Economic

We have raised over 14 million dollars for post-fire reforestation. Funding comes from a variety of sources to match the needs of the land-managers. We also increase regional capacity for reforestation through support of regional tree nurseries, and we create jobs for local people to participate in the reforestation project..

Scientific

In the arid western US, it is key to develop plant materials that are suited to climates of tomorrow and that support communities of future climates. Our research focus is on better adapted plants, creative planting techniques, and maximizing carbon, biodiversity, and water benefits through restoration.

Social

We have developed educational programs such as EcoKids, GreenDrone, and the Restoration Field School. We teach K-12, University, and Community College students.. A cornerstone of our program is to work with schools and NGOs to co-develop projects and implement them together to drive more people into the ecological restoration industry..

Interactional

A key thesis of our group is that cross-cultural networking enhances the overall creativity of our team. We bring together tribal groups, rural communities, and urban youth, from diverse cultural backgrounds. We share results and stories from across our network to inspire action and to stimulate new solutions for conservation and green-job promotion.

CULTURAL

The expression of our values of nature is the theme of our art. This is reflected in our restoration projects through incorporation of concepts illustrated in Earth Art, trail design, narratives, and videography. Expression of our values in nature and the process of acting on these values is a core component of our educational programs and community participatory process.

News & Info

Ecoculture News and Information

Spring Creek Fire Reforestation

Working with private land-owners to plant over 2 million trees near La Veta in southern Colorado

See Project

Flagstaff Community Reforestation

Building community through tree planting with the Coconino National Forest and the City of Flagstaff Open Spaces

See Project

REFORESTATION VIDEO (COMING SOON)

Interactive Map

SELECTED ProjectS

Please have a look at a few of our projects below to learn more about our post-fire reforestation work.