WSCC Nature Club, AFFEW plant trees on campus

October 26, 2023

WSCC, Nature Club, AFFEW plant trees on campus

WSCC News is a presentation of West Shore Community College in partnership with Mason County Press. 

VICTORY TOWNSHIP — Seven black willow saplings were recently planted around the pond on the West Shore Community College campus. The planting was a cooperative effort by WSCC, Nature Club and A Few Friends for the Environment of the World (AFFEW). The black willow trees are an addition to campus that will enhance the environment but also provide unique educational opportunities for students.

According to Julia Chambers, president of AFFEW, black willows were chosen for their significant ecological contributions. They are well-known for their deep roots and lush foliage, making them an ideal choice for areas surrounding bodies of water. This specific variety of willow has a proven track record in wetland restoration projects across the United States. While it is native to the U.S., it’s relatively rare in our region. With recent warming trends, it is anticipated that the black willow will play a crucial role in the local ecosystem.

The black willow trees will also serve as an educational tool.

“Willow trees have a well-researched history of providing medicinal properties that students can examine,” said Paul Bilinksi, professor of biology. “Their leaves, bark, and reproductive structures will add a unique dimension to our biology and local flora classes, creating countless “aha” moments for our students. Even the diseases to which they are susceptible will create learning moments.”

To learn more about WSCC or to sign up for classes, visit

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