Use of Grant Funding

Applicants can request funding amounts from between $1,000 and $20,000

Eligible Expenses

  • Native woody plants materials (trees and shrubs) that only include bare root stock, tublings, 1-gallon and/or 2-gallon containers

  • Tubes and support stakes to protect the plantings (Deer fences and protection against weeds/invasive species are not covered by this grant)

  • Up to two delivery fees associated with transportation of project materials

The same number of plants as tree tubes and stakes should be included in the proposed budget. 

The purpose of this grant is to restore floodplains, and not to provide landscaping assistance for parks and playgrounds. Ornamental and large trees are not eligible grant expenses. The trees and shrubs that are eligible for this grant are small as they are meant to grow over time while helping to restore degraded floodplain areas.

Eligible protection materials (tree tubes and stakes) are provided by select vendors. To ensure maximum survival of species, grow tubes with a fiberglass or PVC support stake must be used to protect all plantings. Purchasing additional materials for future plantings is not an eligible expense to the grant. Applicants will be required to maintain an average cost per tree, tube, and support stake of $12 or less.

The webinar will go into more detail on the eligible plants and protection materials. Learn more about purchasing eligible materials in Section D of the Application Information Packet. Grant recipients will be asked to submit a finalized budget for approval prior to purchasing the grant materials to ensure that all expenses using grant funds are eligible. The budget should include not only the grant expenses, but also the expenses that will be covered by other funding sources so that the entire project budget is represented.

Ineligible Expenses

  • Other supplies (gloves, shovels, etc.)

  • Equipment (mower, auger, etc.)

  • Labor (or contractor) costs for planting and invasive species removal

  • Ineligible protection materials (fencing, weed mats, etc.)

  • Ineligible shrubs and trees (ornamental plants, trees in too large of containers)

  • Additional delivery fees associated with project implementation 

These ineligible expenses cannot be charged to the grant and are the fiscal responsibility of the applicant.


Alternative Protection Materials
Alternative methods of protection include mesh or wire tubing, fencing, wooden stakes, and anything other than the eligible grow tubes and fiberglass or PVC support stakes listed in the Eligible Grant Expenses section. Eligible native trees and shrubs purchased with this grant must be protected with eligible protection materials (tree tube and stake) or approved alternative methods of protection in order for an applicant to be reimbursed for the purchase of those plants upon project completion.

If alternative methods of protection (mesh, fencing, wooden stakes, etc.) are identified by the applicant as better-suited for the protection to be used at your project site, these must be approved prior to purchasing. Any native plants purchased with grant funds and protected by unapproved alternative protection materials will not be eligible for reimbursement. Applicants who feel as though they need to use alternative methods of tree protection at their site should contact Michelle DiBlasio of The Nature Conservancy to discuss their project prior to submitting their application.

If the project is approved by The Nature Conservancy with alternative protection materials included, the applicant will likely be subject to a more rigorous stewardship plan to ensure high plant survivability rate. All alternative protection materials are the financial responsibility of the applicant and are not eligible for grant reimbursement, even if an applicant is approved to use them in their project. Only the recommended tree tubes and stakes listed in the Eligible Grant Expenses section can be charged to the grant.

Please also note that grant recipients will be asked to submit a finalized budget for approval prior to purchasing the project materials to ensure that all purchases of alternative protection materials have been approved by The Nature Conservancy.


Invasive Species Removal
Invasive, non-native species removal is not required, but encouraged if necessary for project success, and the costs associated with this process will also be the financial responsibility of the applicant.
 If invasive species removal is needed, removal methods must be identified in the action plan, along with targeted timelines for completion. Implementation of such plans can take a significant amount of time to complete and may require permits if work is proposed in state regulated areas. These activities can occur before the grant is awarded to ensure that the grant-funded portion of the project is completed within the grant performance period. Information on invasive, non-native species and links to New Jersey specific resources can be found here.

A Native Species Identification Guide is available here and in the Application Information Package and can be used when deciding what trees to purchase and avoid removing for your project. This guide lists all of the species that are on reserve at Pinelands Nursery and includes information on unique identifying characteristics that will help applicants in selecting the appropriate species for their sites.


Labor and Contractor Costs
All labor and contractor costs are the financial responsibility of the applicant. Oftentimes, applicants list their DPW as in-kind labor or volunteers as donated labor. The value of volunteer time used to complete the project can be valued as in-kind at a rate of $24.14/hour.