Upper Elkhorn
Natural Resources District

301 North Harrison Street
O'Neill, NE  68763
Contact Us

Phone:  402-336-3867                Fax:  402-336-1832

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Trees and Wildlife

Conservation Trees for Nebraska Booklet?

Why Plant Trees?
Upper Elkhorn NRD Tree Program
District Plantings
District Planning Service
Available Species
Ordering Trees , Order Form for Trees
Cost of Trees and Materials
Cost Share Assistance Program
Replanting Trees
Wildlife Habitat Improvement Program
Gopher Control


Why Plant Trees?

Trees are a very important part of our environment. They can be used for windbreaks, to protect livestock, to protect homesteads, wildlife habitat and to improve the overall scenery of our land.  We need to constantly plant and care for our trees and they will continue to protect us and our surroundings.

Upper Elkhorn NRD Tree Program

Trees are made available to the Upper Elkhorn NRD through the NARD Tree Program.  The trees are grown at Bessey Nursery located at the National Forest near Halsey, NE. They provide the NRD with a variety of different species for windbreak and wildlife purposes.  The NRD also purchases trees from Lincoln Oaks Nursery, Colorado State Nursery and Towner Nursery. Available Species here.

Ordering Trees

Trees may be ordered by contacting your local NRCS office or the Upper Elkhorn NRD Office in O'Neill.  Orders will be taken from November 1 to March 1.  To assure the number of trees and the species that you want are available, order as soon as possible.  Hand plant orders must be in multiples of 25 per species and can be ordered using the following order form.  Anyone wishing to have machine planted trees should contact the Upper Elkhorn NRD or your local NRCS office as soon as possible to schedule their windbreak planning.  Delivery of trees to the NRD is usually around April 1st depending on the weather in the spring.  Available Species here.

District Plantings

There is a minimum charge of $75 if less than 150 trees are planted by machine.  A 50% deposit is required on all machine plant tree orders to be planted by the NRD.  Tree species will not be guaranteed until the 50% deposit is received.  Tree orders for hand plants need to be paid in full when the trees are ordered to reserve the species.

District Planning Service

For assistance in planning your windbreak, you can contact your local NRCS Office or the Upper Elkhorn NRD Office.  A technician is available to suggest the type of trees best suited for your soil type and design a layout plan for your windbreak.  The plan will include the tree species, approximate number of trees needed and staking of the windbreak. All plans will be drawn up to meet the NRCS specifications.

Replanting Trees

Windbreak renovation is very important. A lot of windbreaks are growing old and dying out; therefore, not providing the protection they once did.  To maintain an effective windbreak, replanting is very important.  This should be done on a yearly basis to fill in the gaps created by the environment. Good management of a windbreak is needed to extend its longevity and effectiveness.

Cost Share Assistance Program

To promote tree planting for livestock, homesteads, wildlife and prevention of soil erosion, the NRD has cost share funds available locally and though the Nebraska Soil and Water Conservation Program.  Trees, planting, drip irrigation systems and weed mulch are eligible for this cost share program.  However, cost share applications will not be approved without a 50% deposit paid for machine plants and 100% of hand plants paid.  

There is a minimum requirement of 200 hand plant trees and 150 machine plant trees to be eligible for cost share.  Cost Share will be paid on the practice and should not include any sales tax.  Cost share forms must be filled out completely and returned to the NRD office along with full payment for your trees, drip irrigation and weed mulch before you will be awarded any cost share funds.  Cost share information can be obtained by contacting your local NRCS Office or the NRD Office.

Available Species

Eastern Red Cedar
Rocky Mountain Juniper
Ponderosa Pine
Jack Pine
Scotch Pine

Austrian Pine
Colorado Blue Spruce

Southwestern White Pine

Black Hills Spruce

Norway Spruce

Bur Oak
Native Cottonwood
Swamp White Oak

Amur Maple

Black Walnut
Kentucky Coffee


Green Ash



Sand Cherry
American Plum
Harbin Pear


Redosier Dogwood

Diamond Willow

Manchurian Apricot

Black Cherry
Nanking Cherry


Species Based on Availability

To view tree species and get additional information visit the 

Conservation Trees for Nebraska website at www.nrdtrees.org.  


2011 Cost of Trees and Materials



Machine Plant Trees-Storage-Tax:  


Drip Irrigation   

15 / foot plus tax

Weed Mulch (Installed):  

65 / foot plus tax

Weed Mulch (by the roll):  

$186.38/500 feet plus tax

Weed Mulch Squares

$2.00 each plus tax

Prices Subject to Change


Gopher Machines and Poison Barley

The Upper Elkhorn NRD has four gopher machines available across the district to aid landowners in the control of gophers.  There is one machine located at the NRCS office in Antelope county; two machines at the Upper Elkhorn NRD office in O'Neill; and one machine in Newport.  Gopher machines may be rented for $15.00 per day and poison barley may be purchased by certified applicators for $2.55 per pound.

For further information or to request an application form contact:

Upper Elkhorn NRD
301 North Harrison Street
O'Neill, NE 68763
caouette@uenrd.org  or


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Copyright 1999 Upper Elkhorn Natural Resource District
Last updated 12/08/2011
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