Trees farms and ranches as livestock or farmstead windbreaks and controlling snow as living snow fences. Trees increase wildlife habitat, reduce stream erosion and siltation, and keep Nebraska’s winds from eroding precious topsoil.

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The Lower Loup NRD accepts orders for trees beginning November 1st of each year and ending April 1st. All orders are subject to stock availability. You may print a copy of the District's Tree Order Form, available as a pdf, at the Forms tab of this section.  Return it to the Lower Loup Natural Resources District, 2620 Airport Drive, Ord, Nebraska, 68862 or to any NRD Field Office.  Tree sales are limited to residents of the Lower Loup NRD.

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Tree Planting

The Lower Loup Natural Resources District sells trees to residents and property owners across the District. Trees are available only to residents living in the District. People living elsewhere in Nebraska should contact the NRD in which they live. People outside Nebraska should contact their local natural resources agency.

Trees can be purchased as cooperator hand plants or for NRD machine planting. Trees are two-year-old bare root seedlings and approximately 12 to 18 inches tall. The District’s tree crews can machine plant thousands of trees a day. There is a $200 minimum charge for machine planting.


Tree planting may qualify for either state or federal cost-share, available at a rate of 50 percent of the total cost. Cost-share is available when NRD crews machine plant seedlings or when a cooperator hand plants seedlings to federal specifications. A $100 minimum purchase is required to apply for state cost-share.

Applications for cost-share should be made at your local Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Farm Service Agency (FSA), or the Lower Loup Natural Resources District headquarters. Contact the District Forester at (308) 728-3221 or your local NRCS office for additional cost-share assistance.

Additional Resources

A booklet, entitled “Conservation Trees for Nebraska,” is available from the Lower Loup NRD and NRDs statewide. It provides detailed information on each variety of tree and shrub sold by NRDs across the state, including a description, planting information, and the area of the state for which the tree is best suited.

Information from the “Conservation Trees for Nebraska” booklet is also available at this site.

Community Forestry

The Lower Loup NRD Board of Directors considers community and urban forestry to be a high priority in the District's mission. To facilitate that mission, the District has entered into a working agreement with the Nebraska Forest Service to provide a full-time, co-funded Forester position at the Headquarters Office in Ord.

One of the primary responsibilities of the Forester will be to assist cities, towns, villages, and county governments with a modern, state-of-the-art forestry program.

If a public entity establishes a legally constituted Community Tree Board, charged by ordinance with the development and administration of a Community Forestry Program, the NRD will:

  1. Assist with a detailed tree inventory, including a detailed assessment of the public tree resource.
  2. Function as "Advisor" on silviculture on public and private lands within the community.
  3. Provide a comprehensive Community Forestry Master Plan and provide copies to the community.
  4. Provide information on planting, removal, and tree care.
  5. Assist communities, when funds are available, with the purchase of trees to be planted on public use areas.
    1. To qualify for funds to purchase appropriate tree nursery stock, a community must have an approved "Community Forestry Plan."
    2. Requests are approved on a case-by-case basis after being reviewed by the District.
    3. The District provides matching funds to purchase woody plant material at fifty percent of actual costs.

For more information on community forestry in your town, contact Lower Loup NRD District Forester Aron Lewis at 308-728-3221.

Buffer Strips

Buffer strips are vegetated areas installed along the banks of rivers, streams, lakes or ponds. They help stabilize stream banks, slow runoff, and filter out sediment and pollutants before they can enter the waterways. Buffer strips also enhance wildlife habitat and reduce flooding.

The Buffer Strip Program began in 1999 as a way to encourage the use of filter strips and riparian forest buffer strips in agricultural areas. It provides annual rental payments to landowners for installing buffer strips. Some of the payments are made as part of contracts from the continuous Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) sign-up.

The program is successful on many levels. First, the buffer strips provide protection for environmentally sensitive land. As the strips mature, they also provide excellent habitat for wildlife and birds.

For more information on the Buffer Strip program or the NRD tree planting program, contact your local Natural Resources Conservation Service office or the Lower Loup Natural Resources District.