NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — This week’s nor’easter caused moderate beach erosion on Long Island’s south shore, but favorable winds kept it from being worse.

Now, the town of Hempstead wants volunteers to help protect the coastal dunes by doing a little planting.

At Point Lookout, volunteers demonstrated the simple art of planting beach grass. The little strands of grass actually stand pretty tall when it comes to protecting the shoreline of the town’s barrier island.

“The blowing wind brings sand into the dunes and the beach grass traps it. That’s why the grass is so important to get into the dunes and that’s what makes the dunes grow,” Liz Murdy, Lido Beach Civic Association, said.

As CBS2’s Dick Brennan reported, the dunes stand 15-ft tall and higher in some locations along the beach front. The Town Supervisor said the precious dunes did their job two years ago.

“Homes in Lido Beach, Point Lookout, and East Atlantic Beach saw significantly less damage than the poor folks in the City of Long Beach from Superstorm Sandy, because Hempstead had been building protective dunes for decades,” Hempstead Town Supervisor, Kate Murray said.

Pounding surf can be the enemy, but the dunes roll right up to nearby homes in Point Lookout.

“We do have the dunes, so I do feel safe,” Marian Hug said.

The recent storm soured away some of the sand in front of the dunes. Now, the town is calling for volunteers to help plant 250,000 strands of beach grass over the weekend.

Point lookout Tom Hug decided it was time for him to help protect his seaside home. He was glad to see that experience is really needed.

“It’s pretty easy. You dig a hole and you put the plant in and you cover it back up. You just kinda push it down, so it doesn’t blow away,” Hug said.

The town said planting in the fall is ideal because winter’s snow cover will protect the beach grass and allow it to grow, but it needs to go in before the ground freezes over.

If you would like to plant some beach grass volunteers will be meeting at Point lookout and Lido Beach on Saturday and Sunday starting at 8:30 in the morning.

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