NewsProtecting Paradise


Mass mangrove, grass plug planting project will help restore estuary in Lake Worth Lagoon

The plants will create shoreline protection, food for native species and nesting for birds, environmentalists say
Posted at 4:49 PM, Feb 16, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-16 18:51:16-05

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — A small area in Palm Beach County turned green from a landscaping project is expected grow for decades to help our local environment. The mass planting brought hundreds of volunteers, leaders in our community and students to Lake Worth Lagoon.

“All around the state of Florida we are declining in natural habitats so in these estuaries are important for us to rebuild that habitat,” Kylie Ariotti, of Palm Beach County’s Environmental Resource Management, said.

What started as an idea to restore the habitat of Palm Beach County's largest estuary in the Lake Worth Lagoon, got the green light and plenty of green to go with it—over 4,000 mangrove trees and grass plugs to be exact.

Five man made islands, known as Tarpon Cove, just east of West Palm Beach’s El Cid neighborhood are quite possibly the best example of how to preserve nature and keep it for the next generation.

“Our lives are connected to the water, connected to the ocean," Angari Foundation founder Angela Rosenberg said. "The more we can do to protect them and make sure they are sustainable for us, then we’ll have a healthy environment to live in for future generations to come.”

The added greenery will help restore the islands creating a natural shoreline protection, a habitat of food for native species and a nesting spot for threatened shore birds.

“Mangroves are that stability for our shorelines, in a lot of ways, but they're actually a stability for life," MANG CEO Kyle Rossin said. "So birds, fish, aquatic life are using these resources as a way to grow their species.”

Populations of oysters, crabs, manatees, and juvenile sea turtles will benefit from this environment. It’s an injection of life above and below the water and well beyond the shoreline.

“We want to be able to protect our structures, our shorelines, the recreational use of our waterbodies while maintaining that habitat for future generations,” Ariotti said.