by Crystal Cockman
The LandTrust for Central NC has a couple of interesting opportunities to get involved coming up this fall and winter. We have two sites where we will be restoring and enhancing native forest communities to the benefit of water quality and wildlife habitat. If you’re interested in learning more about restoring longleaf pine forests or establishing a hardwood forest, this is the opportunity for you.
The first project is located in Montgomery County. This project has long been a vision of the donor as well as a vision from the staff and board of The LandTrust. Jerald Saunders donated the property to us back in 2014, and he has a strong connection to this family land. Recently The LandTrust has been able to begin the process of converting the mixed hardwood/pine site back to its native state of Piedmont Longleaf pine. There are many historic longleaf stumps found on the property with the classic cat-facing, where they scraped the tree to encourage the sap to flow.
The former landowner remembers working in the longleaf pine stand harvesting the sap from the trees, which would then be turned into turpentine, before the older longleaf were cut. There are still some adult longleaf that will provide seed source for the next generation now that there is enough sunlight to the forest floor, but we are going to supplement this with a longleaf pine planting. On December 15, the LandTrust will host a volunteer workshop to provide participants an opportunity to get hands-on experience for the entire process of selecting and planting containerized longleaf pine seedlings. Join us for this fun event and be a part of the process of restoring this unique longleaf forest.
The LandTrust will be hosting a second volunteer opportunity on our Two Rivers property in Davie County this February. We own approximately 1400 acres where the Yadkin and South Yadkin Rivers come together, an area also referred to as the Point. We will be restoring a bottomland hardwood forest on the 25 acres located right above the confluence of the two rivers, thanks in part to a management grant from the Clean Water Management Trust Fund. This land was historically a cow pasture, and then converted to agriculture in the form of small grain production.
We are working to restore the agricultural land to a bottomland hardwood forest. This involves preparing the soil by disking it and planting it in a cover crop of winter wheat and clover to benefit wildlife and to break up the soil and make it easier to plant the trees. We have selected a variety of trees including overcup oak, piedmont white oak, piedmont willow oak, black walnut, and southern crabapple to plant in this area. Participants who come out for this event will learn methods for creating and implementing a bottomland hardwood restoration plan. This event is tentatively scheduled for February 7th and 8th 2018. All of these dates are subject to weather.
If you are interested in learning more about these projects or participating please contact Cody Fulk at 704-647-0302 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.