Join the Living Lands & Waters crew at two tree-wrapping events at the East Moline Bus Garage from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, April 1 and April 2, to support their annual campaign to plant native hardwood trees throughout the Mississippi River Watershed.

Chad Pregracke, head and founder of Living Lands and Waters.

According to a news release, Living Lands & Waters has a goal of distributing and planting more than 160,000 native trees in 2023. This year the group will have Red Oak, Bur Oak, Swamp White Oak, and Shagbark Hickory bare root saplings.

Living Lands & Waters has distributed and planted more than 1.7 million trees through the Million Trees Project since its inception in 2007. Each year, LL&W crew partners with thousands of volunteers from local groups, schools, and families in the early spring to prepare and wrap the bare root saplings, providing a unique hands-on opportunity to participate in the program.

The trees planted through the project are all native hardwood trees and provide benefits like food for birds, shade for people, erosion control, and habitat for hundreds of native species across the region.

LL&W distributes trees to local schools, businesses, churches, individuals, and parks in the Quad Cities and across an average of 22 states throughout the Mississippi River Watershed annually. The organization also hosts volunteer events throughout the year at its tree nursery in Davenport.

“Many years ago, we set out to plant a million trees, I am proud to say that by the end of April we will have surpassed 1.9 million. That is a big number, and we truly cannot do it without the support of all of the awesome volunteers who come out,” says Chad Pregracke, founder and president of LL&W.

The LL&W crew asks that volunteers interested in participating this weekend sign up online here. The crew will provide music, snacks, and a fun atmosphere for volunteers.

More information about the Million Trees Project and this event can be found here.

About Living Lands & Waters

Chad Pregracke started Living Lands & Waters in 1998 as a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the beautification and restoration of America’s major rivers and the education of environmental issues. From his single-boat-beginning, LL&W has grown to an industrial-strength, internationally known organization with a fleet of four barges, two towboats, five workboats, two skid steers, an excavator, six work trucks and a crane. 

Spending up to nine months a year living on the barge, LL&W engages thousands of volunteers each year in river cleanups, hands-on environmental education workshops, the Great Mississippi River Cleanup, Adopt-a-River-Mile, Alternative Spring Break, the I-80 Restoration Project, Invasive Species Removal, the Million Trees Project and Recycle Like a Rockstar.