A field of purple flowers. The pale purple petals point downward from a large, green spiked center.
Purple Coneflower A field of Purple coneflowers. © TNC

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Tree Thinning Workday


Volunteers are needed to thin small trees (mostly cedar) and saplings in an area of our Den Creek and Walnut Hill Preserves near Blacksburg. Morning and afternoon start times are available on two dates, March 2 and March 12.

Den Creek and Walnut Hill are home to the rare, smooth coneflower (Echinacea laevigata), which needs an open canopy with glade-like conditions to thrive. These conditions are slowly yielding to forest and the greatest threat to the smooth coneflower survival at these sites is the shade that results from the presence of woody species.

Volunteers will be split into two groups to maintain safety. Please bring your own gloves and hand saws if you have them; sanitized tools will be available to borrow for the day. Volunteers will also be dragging limbs, small trees and brush and piling it together.

To sign up contact Caitlin Embly, AmeriCorps Volunteer Coordinator at caitlin.embly@tnc.org. Signups are on a first-come basis. Volunteers must read and sign our COVID field guidelines and health screening questions. Guidelines include having a mask readily accessible if working less than 6' apart, bringing hand sanitizer and confirming you have health insurance.