Central Platte NRD has sold 3,780,468 trees since 1972 and 593.4 miles of weed barrier since 1991.
Congratulations to the 2020 Gateway Expo winners! These lucky participants will receive 25 seedlings to plant this spring:
Terry Mason, Callaway; Cord Hesseltine, Arnold; Terry Gibbs, Kearney; and John Hastings, Oxford!



Orders are taken November 1 – April 1 for spring planting.  All stock is sold in multiples of 25.
NOTE: We are SOLD OUT of Austrian Pine, Colorado Blue Spruce, Norway Spruce, Black Cherry, Catalpa, Hackberry, Black Chokeberry, Elderberry, False Indigo, Red Maple and Sandcherry.

Centennial Cotoneaster

100 trees for $90.00   or    25 trees for $22.50

Cost-Share is available for trees & weed barrier at 50%.  Minimum of 200 trees must be ordered to receive cost-share funds.

Receive 50 seedlings for $55.00 (10 of each tree)
Click on package below to see species included in each package.
NOTE: We are SOLD OUT of all packages except the Eastern Nebraska package.

Flowering Package  |  Wildlife Package  |  Eastern Nebraska  |  Western Nebraska

HELPFUL INFO  Tree Planting Guide  |  Ground Preparation

Orders are taken by Central Platte NRD or by your local USDA-NRCS by calling or visiting either office.
*Central Platte NRD  215 Kaufman Ave Grand Island   (308) 385-6282 
*NRCS Field Offices
Central City:
(308) 946-3035 Ext 3     Grand Island: (308) 382-0814 Ext 3    Kearney: (308) 237-3118 Ext 3        Lexington: (308) 324-6314  Ext 3    Osceola: (402)  747-2461 Ext 3



STORAGE After the NRD receives the seedlings from Halsey, we store them in a cooler until planting time. The seedlings will be packaged for pick up at CPNRD or your local NRCS office. If you’re planting your own trees, you’ll be notified on which day to pick them up.  Tree planter equipment is available at no charge. Reservations for the equipment can be made on a first-come, first-serve basis by contacting CPNRD or NRCS.

Trees should be planted immediately. If you’re unable to plant right away, be sure place them in cold storage. A refrigerator is the best way to hold trees (36-38 degrees F.)
Storing for a few days: If cold storage isn’t available, keep trees in a cool place such as a basement in the moist packing material. Keep packing material moist, however, roots should not be submerged in water.
Storing for a few weeks: If trees are to be held for a longer period, place them in a shaded, sloping trench. A 2′ trench will hold about 250 seedlings. Be sure the roots aren’t crowded and cut the strings on the bundles. Cover the roots with soil and pack firmly. Avoid air pockets and keep the soil moist. Do not submerge roots in water.


WEED BARRIERWeed barrier w seedlings

Order Form   | Brochure  

Weed Barrier Program is used as long-lasting protection against weeds for seedling trees without constant effort and damage to the seedlings or the environment.

Weed barrier is a black polypropylene fabric with the appearance of tightly-woven burlap. Moisture is able to penetrate the weed barrier fabric, but it prevents moisture loss from the soil beneath the fabric. Once the material is in place, post-planting maintenance is greatly reduced and the material has a minimum service life of five years guaranteed.


  • Fabric: 6’ wide  .50 cents/lineal foot + tax
  • Sheets of Fabric: 4’x4’ sheets $1.25 /sheet
  • Staples: 10”x 2”x 8” gauge .15 cents each Payment for fabric & staples is required when an order is placed
  • Fabric & Installation: A minimum of 1,000 linear feet will be installed at a job site. Customers are billed for actual feet after the job is completed.  .80 cents per linear feet + tax.  50% payment (of estimated cost)&is required when an order is placed

WB for WB brochureINSTALLATION Weed barrier will be installed by the NRD contractor if the ground has been properly prepared prior to the crew’s arrival. The charge for the fabric & installation is.80 cents/linear foot (+ tax).

NRD crews will install a minimum of 1,000 linear feet at a job site. A 50% deposit is due when the order is placed and you will be billed for the remaining actual linear feet installed after the job is completed.  Minimum charge is 1,000′.

Maintenance: After a few years, check the trunks of the trees to make sure the fabric isn’t too close to them. As the tree grows and the trunk expands, it may get larger than the hole that is initially cut in the fabric…this is called girdling. The fabric may need to be cut away as the trees grow to prevent strangulation of the trees. Using a box cutter, pocket knife or a large pair of scissors. The fabric is made of a strong material so take caution not to cut the trunk of the trees or yourself when making the hole larger. If you have any questions about girdling just give us a call.

CPNRD Contacts: Kelly ColeTom Backer

Tree Planter

A complete tree planting service is available for orders of 400 trees or more.
Cost:  .40 cents/tree planted

Service includes a tree crew with all necessary equipment. When arrangements are made for the NRD to plant the trees, the tree planting crew will deliver them to the landowner at planting time. When a crew completes a planting, any trees left will be heeled in at the end of a row unless the landowner specifies otherwise.

The area to be planted should be prepared as if a garden or field crop were being planted. Plowing and then disking or roto-tilling the ground will establish an excellent seedbed. Survival of your trees greatly depends on excellent ground preparation. Autumn is the best time to begin preparing the soil for tree planting because the winter weather allows the soil to mellow. When planting seedlings, tree roots must at all times be kept moist, but not submerged in water. Do not allow roots to be exposed to wind or direct sun for any length of time. Spacing  The spacing between rows is usually 12-18 feet depending on the species and the width of the equipment to be used when mowing.

  • Cedar trees: 10-14′ apart
  • Pine trees: 10-18′ apart
  • Deciduous: 12-16′ apart
  • Shrubs: 4′ apart

Eastern Red Cedars make a great windbreak.  They grow very quickly, however, they can become a nuisance very quickly as well. We’d like to remind you to keep an eye on your pastures for any volunteer and unwanted cedars. If you see cedars growing in places where they shouldn’t be, be sure to cut them down while they are small to prevent your pastures from becoming over-run by the cedars.  It’s much more cost effective to remove them while they are small.

Tree Planting Illustration


Dig a hole deep enough to hold the roots full length. Spread seedling roots outward and downward keeping root collar at grade. Backfill dirt and tamp around roots. Water and mulch.

DO NOT fertilize at the time of planting! Newly planted trees should be fertilized only if they exhibit signs of nutrient deficiency.

Mulching eliminates potential competition. If you choose not to purchase the NRD’s fabric weed barrier, CPNRD recommends 2″-4″ of loosely packed organic material such as wood chips, pine straw, peat moss, grass clippings or shredded leaves is an adequate mulch layer.
Mulching helps TO:

  • retain soil moisture
  • reduce weeds and controls grass
  • increases natural soil fertility as the mulch decomposes
  • improves soil structure, aeration, and temperature
  • protects the trunk from injuries caused by mowing equipment and trimmers

Seedling showing signs of being overwatered.

Watering during hot, dry summer months is the most important element to help minimize stress on seedlings. Newly planted trees should receive an inch of water per week (one gallon) from rain or irrigation.

Small frequent watering from lawn sprinklers are not beneficial. Give your trees a good soaking each time you water and allow the site to dry before watering again. You can’t water too much at one time, but you can water too often!

When trees are transplanted, they go through a period of shock. During this time the tree is expending a majority of its energy in developing its root system. Don’t Panic. The tops of trees may turn brown but the root system may still be alive and may regain a healthy appearance in the fall.

“Foresting The Sandhills”  is an amazing historical and silent movie on the Nebraska National Forest and Bessey Nursery.  While it does get the name of the adjacent river wrong (Middle, not North Loup), the video is outstanding.  The source is the Nebraska State Historical Society.   Here’s the link…  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hx6aulha5T4