“The incommunicable trees begin to persuade us to live with them, and quit our life of solemn trifles” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
I have been waiting quite some time to be able to start with this quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson. I have finally been inspired by a landowner where it fit- on top of his bucket list was being able to escape the trifles of life and live surrounded by nature and being within the trees. Recently retired he was able to finally escape the hustle and bustles of work and live out his life long dream of trees and wildlife! There is pure comfort in being able to know what you do to positively impacts the land. This landowner was searching for all the right education to better sustain his property for the future all all wildlife that lives among it; even the families of squirrels! Not many landowners I meet care for the squirrels!! Go Squirrels!
This landowner had just purchased the property and called me up a couple weeks prior to our visit very concerned about what previous landowners had done with logging it. He is not against logging, but was very concerned with how it looked “butchered”. I pulled up curious of why he was concerned…I saw no immediate concerns. We began to talk about the property, a bit of history, and I simple said “I think it looks great”. He took a stutter step backwards and had a huge smile on his face! He told me I made his day, I said great my work is done and jokingly acted like I was going to leave! He began to explain how this is his life’s dream, his top of the bucket list adventure, his true passion. He was so incredibly worried about the forest and purely wanted to know everything he could do to make it better, was geared up to learn and do everything in his power to make it sustainable. We chatted about the basics- he has oaks so I filled him in on oak wilt and Asian- longhorn beetle for his maples.
We began our trek through the forest, well the sprouting of a new forest! I began to explain to him about how great it looked, you could see the baby red and white oaks covering the ground and the maples sprouting like crazy! He asked what he needed to do with everything and my answer for everything was “just let nature takes its course”. Forests have been doing their thing for many years before us so they know what best to do naturally. Now, if he did not have the ample regeneration he had, we would have been compiling a planting plan! Instead, we discussed adding fruit trees, hazelnut trees and some pines around the property lines for edge to enhance for wildlife and biodiversity. Forest land is so fragmented, split into parcels and one way to help wildlife feel safe in an area is to have forest edge and enclosure.
Just let Mother Nature do her thing!