This was the first programme of the newly created National Parks Trust in 1964, following the declaration of Sage Mountain as a National Park. Originally focusing on the reforestation of cleared agricultural or pasture land, it now encompasses the coastal environment, with emphasis on mangrove replanting.
Reforestation efforts aim to increase floral species diversity, restore degraded habitats, conserve watersheds and raise public awareness of the importance of trees within the BVI. The programme is celebrated every year at Arbour Day, when trees are distributed to schools and members of the general public. School children are encouraged to participate in the special events, such as essay and container garden competitions.
The rehabilitation of mangrove areas, using the Riley Encasement method began in 1999 as a joint effort with the Conservation and Fisheries Department, in response to the escalating rate of coastal development. Mangroves have four very important roles: they are nurseries for juvenile fish; habitats and feeding grounds for birds; sediment filters that protect coral reefs and sea grass beds from becoming smothered; and buffers between the land and sea to reduce the impact of high wave energy.