VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Dozens of volunteers were working hard Saturday morning to beautify the Ocean Lakes neighborhood in Virginia Beach.

“Trees are about the most important thing you can do for climate change, sea-level rise, flooding issues,” said Karen Forget with Lynnhaven River Now.

Almost 400 trees will be planted in the neighborhood. We asked Forget just how important trees are to low lying neighborhoods.

“Trees store a lot of water they keep the soil less compacted so the water can soak into the ground and they actually take up a lot of water and store the water in the body of the tree,” said Forget.

The cost to plan and plant the trees cost around $25,000.

“Funding came from the Virginia Department of Forestry to purchase all the trees for the supplies and that was matched with funding from our own Kenneth Greif Tree Fund and a generous donation from the Malben Family Foundation,” she said.

And what kind of trees could residents see in their neighborhood?

“A lot are Cedars or Wax Myrtles. We use a lot of local species to prevent invasive species and we select trees based on their water resistance,” said volunteer Daniel Martin. 

Forget says they also will give out 100 additional trees for residents to plant in their own yards.

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