Historically, up to 98% of PEI was covered in forest. Over time, forests were cleared away, and in many cases right to the stream banks. However, we now have buffer zones along our streams, allowing many of the areas cleared of trees to begin to regrow.
Kensington North Watersheds has planted many thousands of trees over the past decade. The majority of the trees are planted near streams to improve the riparian zone. Trees are beneficial to streams for several reasons including providing shade to the stream and lowering the temperature, stabilizing the stream banks with their roots, and providing habitat and food for other wildlife like birds and mammals.
Many of the streams in our area have had their trees completely cleared in the past and the trees that thrive in the the open and wet areas are alders. Small patches of trees are cut out of these areas, and a variety of other water tolerant trees are planted among them, such as red maple, white cedar or eastern larch.
The goal of patch cuts is that over time, the newly planted trees will grow up and shade over the alders. When alders don’t have access to light, they will die back, returning the area to a more diverse mix of tree species.
Where necessary, trees have been provided with tree guards to prevent mouse browsing, and cardboard mulch to prevent grass and weeds from growing around the tree and overwhelming them.
|Tree||Soil Moisture||Shade Tolerance|
|Black Spruce||Wet - Dry||Full Sun|
|Eastern Hemlock||Moist - Well-Drained||Shade - Part Shade|
|Eastern Larch||Wet - Dry||Full Sun|
|Eastern White Cedar||Wet - Dry||Part Shade - Full Sun|
|Red Pine||Moist - Dry||Full Sun|
|White Pine||Wet - Well-Drained||Part Shade - Full Sun|
|White Spruce||Moist - Dry||Full Sun|
|Mountain Ash||Well-Drained||Part Shade - Full Sun|
|Red Maple||Wet - Well-Drained||Full Sun|
|Red Oak||Moist - Well-Drained||Full Sun|
|Sugar Maple||Moist-Well-Drained||Shade - Full Sun|
|Trembling Aspen||Wet - Dry||Full Sun|
|White Ash||Moist - Dry||Full Sun|
|White Birch||Moist - Well-Drained||Part Shade - Full Sun|
|Yellow Birch||Moist - Well-Drained||Part Shade - Full Sun|