A young male volunteer, kneeling on the grass, plants a tree on a river shoreline.

Why Are Shorelines Important?

The shoreline is where land, water, and air meet. It is a vital link providing plants and wildlife the resources they need for life. We also rely on shorelines for sustenance. People have grown up along the water's edge and we continue to return to the shore to rest and restore our spirits. Those of us who live by water experience its magic every day. Our health and the long-term value of our waterfront property depend on how we care for the shore - the “ribbon of life”.

Natural Shorelines: The Best Approach

A natural shoreline is considered the best approach to protecting a lake or river's edge. Planting and maintaining a buffer zone along your shoreline will have many benefits. This zone, made of native plants, will slow erosion, provide food and shelter for fish and wildlife, and protect your property. Best of all, natural shorelines mean less work and more time to enjoy the water. Roots from shrubs and trees absorb wave and ice energy. This stabilizes soils and prevents erosion. Shrubs and trees also discourage Canada Geese. This means you won't have to deal with their waste or have nuisance interactions with these birds. Plants near the shore slow surface runoff and filter contaminants before they reach the lake. Naturalized shorelines provide vital food and shelter for fish and wildlife species.

Natural Edge Shoreline Planting Program – APPLY TODAY

Quinte Conservation and Watersheds Canada invite waterfront property owners in the Quinte Watershed to take part in the Natural Edge Program.

By offering a full-service restoration program, waterfront property owners can naturalize their shoreline. The program includes a free (confidential) site visit, the creation of a shoreline-planting plan, and the ordering, delivery, and planting of native trees, shrubs, and wildflowers.

Since the Ontario Trillium Foundation is funding the program, landowners only have to pay 25% of the total project cost. This cost will vary depending on the size of the property.


If you are interested in learning more about the project or connecting with project staff for a confidential free site visit, contact Watersheds Canada at naturaledge@watersheds.ca or contact Maya, Quinte Conservation's Outreach and Stewardship Coordinator. 

full service natural edge program, showing a page from a planting plan and the finished planted shoreline

Shoreline Re-naturalization Starter Kits - APPLY TODAY

Shoreline re-naturalization starter kits are now available at a 50% subsidized rate for 2021. The subsidized landowner cost for the kit is $250. 

Each kit includes:

  • A free site visit and customized planting plan
  • 50 native plants, including potted trees, shrubs, and wildflowers
  • Coconut fibre discs for trees and shrubs
  • Mulch for wildflowers
  • Tree guards (as needed)
  • A Plant Care Guide, Habitat Creation Guide, and Wildflower Garden Guide

To book a free site visit, contact Maya, Quinte Conservation's Outreach and Stewardship Coordinator. 


shoreline planting kit

Additional Resources

Restoring Your Shoreline

Solutions for Shoreline Erosion

Healthy Waterfronts

Lake Protection Workbook: A Self-Assessment Tool for Shoreline Property Owners

BQRAP Habitat Enhancement Grant Program for Waterfront Property Owners 

For more information, contact Maya Navrot, Outreach and Stewardship Coordinator at 613-968-3434 ext. 131 or mnavrot@quinteconservation.ca