Earth Day 2014: The Start of a 65-Year Reforestation Journey
Rockler and the Hardwood Forestry Fund are proud to support a new reforestation initiative called The Wilds. The Wilds is a private, non-profit conservation center located on nearly 10,000 acres of reclaimed mining land in rural southeastern Ohio. The goal of the project is to populate the land with a sustainable hardwood forest. Executing carefully planned phases, the project team will be the caretakers of 7,000 hardwood seedlings of five different species: Red Oak, Chestnut Oak, Black Walnut, Sugar Maple, and Tulip Poplar.
A not-for-profit, educational organization, The Hardwood Forestry Fund targets planting and management of commercially valuable hardwoods, including black cherry, black walnut, red oak, hard maple, hickory, ash, and others. All trees planted by the Hardwood Forestry Fund require a management plan, harvest, and regeneration schedule.
Help us ensure a steady source of beautiful domestic hardwoods for generations to come. To learn more about the Hardwood Forestry Fund and make your own contribution, please visit their web site at www.hardwoodforestryfund.org.
Year 1: Preparation of the planting site, including subsoiling efforts to ensure proper nutrients are present.
Year 2: Planting of the 7,000 seedlings and installation of protective tubes as well as application of deer repellant and herbicide for weed control.
Year 3: Monitoring of tree survival and growth, as well as replanting if the mortality rate of the original planting is higher than 30%. Continued application of deer repellant and herbicide.
Years 4-24: Growth monitoring, removal of protective tubes as trees mature, maintenance, deer repellant, and herbicide as needed.
Years 25-45: Thinning of the forested area and selective timber harvest.
Years 46-65: Commercial harvest of mature hardwood trees, regeneration of the forested area, and evaluation of the project.
Environmental Education Opportunities
From its inception, The Wilds has been envisioned as a facility that combines cutting-edge conservation science and education programs with unique visitor opportunities. The Wilds is host to over 110,000 visitors each year who will have an opportunity to learn about the project and the importance of healthy forest habitats. K-12 and college classes, local, regional, and national conference field trips, and summer camp attendees are among the typical visitors of the site. The Wilds also offers internship and apprenticeship programs that allow students to get hands-on experience with restoration projects. Learn more at their website www.thewilds.org