Google+

Woodland Makeovers

Big Enhancements – Minimal Destruction
By Brenda Valentine

Begging Mr. Longfellow’s pardon, but we are borrowing half of a line from one of his famous poems, “I think that I shall never see a thing more lovely than a forest of trees.” Nor do I believe I shall ever see a thing less lovely than a forest of trees following someone who is sloppy with a chainsaw and bulldozer. This is not to say that I don’t recognize the need or advantages of managing timberlands, but I longed to find a kinder-gentler, less-destructive way to thin, enhance and gain access to my own forests.

The thoughts of dealing with stumps, dozer piles, rotting tree laps, muddy ruts and the destruction of young desirable trees kept me from doing anything with a particular 70 acre tract of timber covered bottomland. My experience with heavy equipment, mainly a track hoe & bulldozer clearing mostly brushy fencerows and overgrown thickets, has been positive, but to turn those big machines lose to rip through a pristine woodland was more than I could stand.

Part of this tract of land lies in a flood plain, all of it was virtually inaccessible and totally unproductive. The timber had never been cut and not even a footpath existed. Towering poplar and several varieties of oak had matured there while a literal jungle of briars, iron-wood, and cane made it impossible to walk through most places. To add to the inhospitableness, much of the land was covered with wetweather seepages and drainage ditches that would suck the shoes off a horse and leave them floundering in the stinking muck. We were getting no use whatsoever from this acreage and it rankled me to pay taxes on ground and not even be able to access it.

The summer of 2012 will go down in history as one of the driest for this area. In midsummer I began to ponder again the possibilities of how to gain entry to this woodland without creating “scars” that may never heal.

Simply by chance, I thumbed through the Yellow Pages of the phone book and randomly picked a number (270-753- 6398). It was Swift Environmental Maintenance Contractors in Murray, KY. I explained to the owner, Dale Swift, my dilemma and how presently the only way onto to the property was by parachute, but I couldn’t stand the thought of creating huge dozer piles or damaging my good trees. I wanted 32 FarmingForWildlife.com to open up a few small honey-hole food plots, maybe plant a  few soft mast trees and have a road just wide enough to access them with a small tractor but I didn’t want stumps or log piles left to rot. And while I was making out this wish list I added that it would be nice to somehow have a simple means for crossing the numerous 3 to 4 foot deep drainage ditches. I realized even while I was saying it that he probably thought I was some crazy tree-hugging woman with a jacked-up imagination asking for the impossible. Seemingly unfazed by my call, Dale promised that he and his son, Mason, would come out soon and take a look at the job while the ground was dry.

Click Here to read the rest of this article in Gamekeepers Magazine!

Entertainment

For movies opening December 9, 2016

  OPENING THIS WEEK Kam's Kapsules Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun by Kam Williams For movies opening December 9, 2016 BIG BUDGET FILMS The Bounce Back (PG-13 for profanity, sexuality and brief drug use) Romantic comedy about a charismatic relationship guru (Shemar Moore) who falls in love with a skeptical fellow therapist (Nadine Velazquez) he meets while on a book tour promoting his new best seller. Supporting cast … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

Volume 2 of Yes Sir, Yes Sir, 3 Bags Full! – You Do NOT Want to Miss This

  Volume 2 of Yes Sir, Yes Sir, 3 Bags Full! – You Do NOT Want to Miss This Book Review by Amy Lignor What began in an unforgettable Volume 1—living Jerry Hall’s story and dealing with the heart-wrenching issues of the Viet Nam* War—continues here. The action of battle, fraught with the unending horrors that the “unwanted veterans” dealt with, grows even more painful. And as war comes closer to an end, what should have been peaceful … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the days of pain, the days of sorrow. We are in mourning. The sky looks down and sheds its tears for … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

New Home Sales Jump in April

  New Home Sales Jump in April By Burt Carey Sales of new homes hit their highest rate since 2008 in April, according to the Commerce Department’s U.S. Census Bureau. April sales increased 16.6 percent over March figures, which correlates to a seasonally adjusted rate of 619,000 home sales projected for the year. The median price of those new homes was $321,000, the highest median price ever recorded. That’s up 9.7 percent … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

Paging Norman Rockwell

  Paging Norman Rockwell by Amy Lignor   For those who may not have had the pleasure before – and all you true Christmas “classic” lovers who have always wanted to see it – Stockbridge, Massachusetts, is the most brilliant and beautiful place during the holiday season. Made famous by the original Norman Rockwell, whose museum is part of the line of historic buildings making up that classic Main Street, Stockbridge is dressed up … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Winterization Tips from Yamaha Outboards

  Winterization Tips from Yamaha Outboards By Craig Lamb Every hardcore angler wants to go fishing at the first sign of warm weather in spring. The last thing any fisherman wants is cutting a trip short because of mechanical problems with an outboard engine.   The best way to avoid problems, and enjoy trouble-free time on the water, is by preparing ahead of time. That begins now. Preparing for extended storage efficiently and effectively … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

The Best & Worst (So Far) of the 2016 NFL Season

  The Best & Worst (So Far) of the 2016 NFL Season by Amy Lignor     Okay…we’re almost dead center, folks, so it’s time to sum up the best and silliest actions and reactions that the 2016 NFL season has provided fans thus far.   Analysts are always yapping, and most likely nothing they say will actually come true. However, right now almost everyone is agreeing to the fact that Tom Brady has a score to settle. Yes, … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

We Are Still…All in This Together!

  We Are Still…All in This Together! by Amy Lignor   December 7, 1941. Sunday morning was lovely on the Hawaiian island of Oahu. A typical Sunday, in fact, where people were moving calmly and in a relaxed “weekend-mode” stance at the U.S. Navy’s Pacific Fleet Headquarters. Just before the clocks struck 8:00 a.m., however, the country of Japan launched planes from six aircraft carriers in what would be considered the “first wave” of … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Exploring the Holidays Around the Globe

  Exploring the Holidays Around the Globe by Amy Lignor   Thanksgiving has been had. Games have been watched and the golden turkey has caused a great many belts to be loosened. So…here it comes!   From hanging the stockings on the chimney with care to the red-nosed reindeer who had to be there; from Santa heading down that chimney just right to lovely sleigh bells ringing softly in the night, the holiday season is a truly … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

Forecasting Climate Change

  Forecasting Climate Change by Amy Lignor As with anything in this world, it depends on whose opinion or observations you trust as to just how bad climate change is becoming. As 2016 begins to wrap up, climate scientists, atmospheric physicists, chemists, oceanographers – you name it – no one can come up with any other explanation for climate change and the warming of our planet other than human activity. How fast is it happening? … [Read More its Good for You...]