The degradation of streams has been widespread in the United States. In Kentucky, for instance, almost all of its large streams have been impounded or channelized. A restoration project was initiated in a channelized section of Wilson Creek (Nelson Co., Kentucky) to return its predisturbance meandering configuration. A goal of the project was to restore the native riparian corridor with giant cane and bottomland forest species. The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of giant cane in riparian restoration and to compare water quality and soil attributes between restored cane and forested communities. Comparison of data to replicated sites of similar size in undisturbed upstream areas (control) was also examined to evaluate restoration success. Vegetation establishment was initially hindered by frequent flooding in 2004, but mean survival was good after two growing seasons with rates of 80 and 61% for forest and cane plots, respectively.