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In 2014 The Maryland State Forest Tree Nursery Celebrates 100 years of Service.

In 1914 the State Board of Forestry established a state tree nursery whose primary purpose was to grow trees for roadside planting. Over the years the nursery has evolved to growing seedlings for conservation purposes including wildlife, habitat, watershed and soil protection, and forest products.

Through the years, the nursery has built a reputation for serving the needs of our customers, and we are proud to continue that commitment today. We strive to provide you with high quality seedlings and excellent service at competitive prices.

We appreciate our long term relationships and the business we do with our loyal customers. All of us at The John S. Ayton State Forest Tree Nursery look forward to serving your planting needs for many years to come.

Thank you for a century of shared success!

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb

P.S. If you are not sure which species are right for your needs, please call your local forestry office. They can answer questions about site conditions, species selection and financial incentives you may qualify for. Click here for a list of offices.

PLEASE NOTE: There are regulations in who may purchase trees and for what purpose. Seedlings purchased from the State Nursery cannot be used for landscaping or ornamental purposes. The Forest Service, however, fully recognizes the benefits that trees provide in terms of beautification, privacy screening and enhancing architectural design. We encourage homeowners and businesses to patronize their local private nursery, garden center or landscape contractor. These professionals can assist you in choosing proper trees, shrubs, flowers and maintenance supplies to meet your landscaping needs.

Trees obtained from the John S. Ayton State Forest Tree Nursery are available for conservation purposes defined as: Watershed Protection, Wildlife Habitat, Christmas Trees, Forest Products, Soil Protection, Buffer Planting and Windbreak Protection.

In accordance with natural resources Code 5-408 and Regulation 08.07.03 which authorizes the sale of tree seedlings, the landowner who purchases seedlings from the John S. Ayton Nursery agrees to the following:

  • That all seedlings and shrubs so purchased shall be planted in the State of Maryland or Delaware for conservation purposes.
  • That a planting report be furnished when requested by the Department of Natural Resources.
  • That the planting be protected as far as possible from fire, grazing and trespass.
  • That trees may not be offered for sale with roots attached for removal from the land as live or ornamental trees.

Disclaimer: While we would like to be able to guarantee our seedling stock against the ravages of nature and human intervention, we simply can not. We will however, prepare, package and ship healthy seedlings with the utmost care. When the seedlings leave our nursery they become the responsibility of the carrier and then the customer. If they arrive damaged due to obvious misuse, please report it to the carrier immediately. We can assume no responsibility after the seedlings leave our nursery.

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