Tree and Environment Sustainability Committee
The Tree & Environment Sustainability Committee will be defining its mission and activities in the coming months. The vision of the committee is to establish partnerships with citizens, business owners, and other stakeholders to plan and implement measurable environmentally responsible and sustainable initiatives for Purcellville and our nation.
- Tree ordinance development and oversight
- Town-side and watershed cleanup events
- Community gardening and tree planting projects (see below for the project with Virginia Trees for Clean Water)
- Sustainability Ideas
- Nature preserve and trail enhancement education series
- Paint Purcellville Green/Hail to the Trail (scroll down for more information about this annual event)
- Rain Barrel Program
- Energy saving audit and mitigation
- Electronic and hazardous waste
- Recycling and certified bottled water free zone
- Workshops and education on environmental sustainability
Virginia Trees for Clean Water: Restoring the Riparian Buffer at the Chapman DeMary Trail
What is a Riparian Buffer?
According to the Virginia Department of Forestry website, a riparian buffer is a “streamside forest” with plants that line waterways to protect them from the impacts of surrounding land use. The functions of riparian buffers include:
- Slowing flood waters and reducing the volume of water through root absorption.
- Improving water quality by filtering runoff and promoting sediment deposition.
- Allowing water storage in plant roots and providing pathways to groundwater layers.
- Providing canopy cover which shades and cools the stream, improving habitat conditions for instream organisms (fish, salamanders, frogs, etc.). This shade also provides relief from extreme heat for terrestrial animals.
- Providing habitat for a variety of birds and small mammals. These buffers also act as corridors to similar habitat, providing food, shelter and nesting sites.
Riparian areas also provide great opportunities for recreational activities such as fishing, hiking, bird-watching, picnicking and camping.
We Need Your Help!
To plant the hundreds of tree seedlings that will help restore the riparian buffer, we will hold two community planting days:
- Sunday, April 29 starting at 1 p.m., part of the monthly Discover Nature’s Secrets events hosted by the Purcellville Parks and Recreation Advisory Board as well as Loudoun Nature Days hosted by the Loudoun Environmental Stewardship Alliance
- Sunday, October 28 starting at 1 p.m., part of the monthly Discover Nature’s Secrets events hosted by the Purcellville Parks and Recreation Advisory Board
Both plantings will be led by the Virginia Department of Forestry and are a great way to get involved in helping our environment, to learn more about native trees and riparian buffers, and—for students and scouts—to get volunteer hours.
If you plan to join us for these plantings, please dress appropriately for being in the woods and bring your own shovel and work gloves. Also, please sign up online!
Annual Hail to the Trail Scheduled for October 20, 2018
Join the Town of Purcellville's Tree and Environment Sustainability Committee at the Chapman DeMary Trail on Sunday, October 20, 2018 for a fun day in nature! From 1 to 4 p.m., explore this 10-acre area, considered to be the last stand of old-growth forest in the Town of Purcellville, go on guided nature walks, enjoy hands-on activities, meet local nature experts, see live animals with the Wildlife Ambassadors. During the event his year, we will plant seedlings to help restore the riparian buffer. This activity is part of a project funded through the Virginia Department of Forestry's Virginia Trees for Clean Water program.Like the Hail to the Trail facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/hailtothetrail/
About the Chapman DeMary Trail
The beauty of the Chapman DeMary Trail encourages exploration of the outdoors and emphasizes stewardship in everyday activities. The trail is supported by The Nature Generation, Loudoun Valley High School, the Piedmont Environmental Council, and the Town of Purcellville. The Town of Purcellville holds the conservation easement for the 10-acre area. The Chapman DeMary Trail, located in what is considered to be the last stand of old growth forest in the Town of Purcellville, provides amazing hands-on environmental learning and stewardship opportunities to thousands of residents, visitors, students, and scouts! It is located at 355 North Hatcher Avenue (behind the building at 205 East Hirst Road) in Purcellville, Virginia. Read even more about the trail at http://www.natgen.org/chapman-demary-trail/