Hardwood Forestry Fund Members know that wood is a renewable resource, and that healthy, vibrant forests provide benefits to wildlife, the environment, and to people.

National Tree Hugger Day Oct. 16

National Tree Hugger Day Oct. 16

Celebration of the second annual Tree Hugger Day, organized by AMERICAN FORESTS and IKEA, is planned for Saturday, October 16. Get outside and officially hug your favorite tree, take pictures, or play in the woods.  After you’re finished, embrace sustainable forestry by considering a donation to the Hardwood Forestry Fund. Your $10 contribution plants 20 trees: oak, maple, cherry, walnut, butternut, hickory…all hardwood species that we hold dear. After that, cuddle up with a good book in front of a roaring fire in your coziest chair and enfold yourself in the goodness that comes from wood.

2010 Gifford Pinchot Award presentation at CCA Global Convention

2010 Gifford Pinchot Award presentation at CCA Global Convention

Houston, TX  – Mr. Howard Brodsky, Co-Founder and Chairman of CCA Global Partners presented a 2010 Hardwood Forestry Fund Gifford Pinchot Award on behalf of the HFF Board of Directors to Don Finkell, President/CEO of Anderson Hardwood Floors on July 22, 2010.  

 The Hardwood Forestry Fund’s Gifford Pinchot Award recognizes significant corporate achievements in promoting sustainable forestry. Gifford Pinchot is considered to be the United States’ first forester.  He was the first Chief of the US Forest Service, and founded the Society of American Foresters and served as its first president.

Anderson Hardwood Floors received this special award for their tremendous environmental and conservation focus.  Anderson has invested significant time and money:
• educating people about America’s vast and renewable forest resources
• raising the bar on the sourcing of legal products
• leading efforts to expand tree replacement on national forests
• converting wood waste to energy

and last but not least…

• taking an industry leadership role in providing customers with environmentally conscious “green” products from around the world

Anderson’s vision statement has always been, “Replace what you take, and leave the place better than you found it.”

Congratulations to Anderson Hardwood Floors, Inc.

Mt. Hope Recreation Area

Mt. Hope Recreation Area

In southwestern Wisconsin, the transition from oak dominated stands to a lower value central hardwoods type is common.   The direct seeding, seedling planting, and release activities of this project demonstrate to landowners opportunities for turning areas of low value trees into stands that potentially will yield high wildlife and timber values.

Project Description: The direct seeding area is on a north-facing slope.   Soils are classified as Dubuque and Fayette silt loams and deep, stony rock land.  Site indices for oak in adjacent stands range from 60 to 66; similar growth rates are expected on this site. The goal of the direct seeding is to increase the desirable seedling stocking level to capture the site quickly and allow some trees to develop without significant form damage due to deer browsing. 

The walnut planting site is a valley bottom with deep, colluvial soil whose productivity should rank only somewhat lower than the best sites in Grant County.  The site now grows primarily boxelder, elm, and cottonwood, with widely scattered black cherry, oak, butternut, and walnut trees from sapling to sawlog size.  Measured site indices for walnut ranged from 73 to 93. 

The 1.25 acre release of natural seedlings area now has an average of 2,600 mixed red oak, white oak, and black cherry seedlings per acre.  The seedlings are overtopped by a mix of native and exotic brush, widely scattered poor quality or cull sawlogs and an average of 5 cords of poletimber, mostly basswood.  The goal is to remove overtopping woody vegetation to encourage good survival and fast growth on the seedlings.  Rotation and thinnings will mirror those in the direct seeding site.  The measured site index for red oak is 79.

Natural regeneration of desirable, shade intolerant species on these sites is limited due to an overstory of low value central hardwood species and, in some cases, limited oak, walnut, and black cherry seed sources nearby.  Adequate numbers of elm, bitternut hickory and cottonwood trees would naturally develop on the site without active management but that does not meet the management goal of producing high quality hardwoods while providing excellent habitat for consumable wildlife.  Deer pose challenges to development of good tree form and growth rates on some portions of the Mt. Hope Recreational Area.

Environmental Education Opportunities: The Mt. Hope Recreational Area is one of several state owned woodlands managed with the idea of demonstrating good forest management practices to the public.  Specifically, this property is managed with the goal of showing what can be done with a former agricultural property.  The project areas vary in their accessibility to the public though all are open to public access at all times.  The proposed direct seeding site starts less than 100 yards from the parking area and the terrain is gentle enough that visitors should be able to visit without difficulty.   The walnut site starts approximately 300 yards from the parking lot along an old woods road that will be improved during an up-coming pine thinning.  The proposed oak/cherry release sites are accessed by a short walk along an existing woods road followed by a steep,but short, walk up a trail to the ridge.  The property is used by hunters, fishers, and recreational hikers many of whom would support the goal of developing a long term oak resource.  The direct seeding to reinforce existing regeneration and protection of desirable hardwood seedlings in a woodland (rather than traditional plantation) area are practices likely to interest local woodland owners. The project manager expects to attract 20 to 40 landowners for a field day tour sponsored either by Wisconsin Woodland  Owners Association or the Kickapoo Woods Cooperative.

Project partners:  Wisconsin DNR provides: red oak acorns and walnut seedlings from Wilson State Nursery; boxelder removal adjacent to walnut planting site; travel, labor for project set-up, supervision,  sign installation, and coordination of on-site educational activities.  Kickapoo Woods Cooperative and Wisconsin Woodland Owners Association newsletters will share information regarding the success of regeneration and release practices used in this project.

This project is funded by all Hardwood Forestry Fund members.

  • Project Type: Direct seeding, seedling planting, TSI
  • Project Initiation Date: Fall 2009
  • Location: Grant County , WI
  • Number of Trees: 10,183
  • Number of Acres: 5
  • Tree Species: Red oak, Black walnut, White oak, Black cherry
  • Project Partner: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

Devil’s Lake State Park, Wisconsin (2010)

Devil’s Lake State Park, Wisconsin (2010)

Devil’s Lake State Park is an approximately 10,000-acre property located within the 55,000-acre south range of the Baraboo Hills in Sauk County.  The Baraboo Hills are unique in that they support one of the largest upland hardwood forests in the Midwest and provide critical nesting habitat to forest-interior songbirds.  The forest also benefits the area economically by providing high-value sawtimber and recreational opportunities. Fragmentation of the forest by human development and agriculture threaten the hills economically and ecologically.  We are gradually converting agricultural fields into forest cover.  As these plantings advance they will close gaps in the forest landscape thus contributing additional habitat for plants and animals needing deep forest conditions as well as provide high quality sawtimber for economical benefits.  This project complements other work to improve the overall health of the Baraboo Hills, and could leverage other grant dollars to accomplish additional reforestation.

Successful plantation establishment will be based on planting high numbers of seedlings initially established, follow-up vegetation control, monitoring survival and interplanting if needed, and minimizing deer browsing impacts.  

Approximately 30 students and their parents will visit the site each year.  YEPS is a program for ALL youth, families, and youth organizations of Sauk County. The goal of YEPS is to provide an opportunity for youth and families to participate in environmental stewardship service-learning projects. YEPS is coordinated by members of UW Extension, Sauk County Land Conservation Dept, Sauk County Planning and Zoning, Riverland Conservancy, volunteers and student representatives. Http://sauk.uwex.edu/4h/YEPS.html.  

Because of its unique hardwood forest and its close proximity to Madison, the Baraboo Hills is a frequent field trip destination for groups ranging from the WI Woodland Owner’s Association to the national Natural Areas Association.  This site will be an attractive stop on field trips for forest product professionals and scientists alike. Annually, 1.5 million people visit Devil’s Lake State Park.  Informational signs will be constructed where plantings are done near high public use areas.

 This planting is designed to integrate an old crop field into the forest canopy of the Hills.  It does so by mimicking natural regeneration on the site and limiting suitable habitat for invasive grassland and undesirable woody species.  In the short-term, this benefits the natural communities on the Park stands by lessening edge effect; and lowering habitat fragmentation by connecting adjacent blocks of oak-dominated woodlands.  In the long-term, this planting will have the added benefit of producing high quality oak sawtimber and setting an example for how natural community management and sound, sustainable forestry can complement one-another and meet the long term objectives of each.

Partners and Roles:     
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) Division of Forestry will provide project oversight, technical expertise and fiscal management.
WDNR Bureau of Parks is the landowner, and will provide sign creation and installation, and long-term project maintenance. 
WDNR State Nurseries Program will provide trees for the initial planting and any replacement trees needed.
Sauk County Land Conservation Department will support the overall coordination of the project.
Youth Environmental Projects of Sauk County will work with WDNR staff on seedling survival monitoring, interplanting as necessary, and pruning for economic quality.
American Forests Global ReLeaf provided a grant to help fund this project.

Update from Project Manager July 21,2010:  
“We have been periodically monitoring the health of the trees that were planted.  Overall they look to be growing very well, with excellent survival rates.  This fall, we will have hold a tree monitoring project through the Youth Environmental Projects of Sauk County (YEPS), which will measure tree seedling survival rates.  Subsequent yearly tree monitoring will be done through YEPS and the DNR foresters   Heights of the tree seedlings range from 12 inches to 24 inches.  Follow up weed control treatments of the fields will be done the next few years.”

This project is proudly sponsored by American Forests Global ReLeaf.

  • Project Type: Seedling planting
  • Project Initiation Date: 2010
  • Location: Sauk County , WI
  • Number of Trees: 21,500
  • Number of Acres: 7.5
  • Tree Species: Red oak, Black walnut, Black cherry, White oak
  • Project Partner: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Division of Forestry and Bureau of Parks

Jackson-Washington State Forest, IN (4)

Jackson-Washington State Forest, IN (4)

Project proudly sponsored by Armstrong World Industries.

The spring 2009 tree planting project used member volunteers from the Indiana Forestry & Woodland Owners Association to plant seedlings and to provide weed control on a former agricultural field.  The seedlings were planted in rows using a mechanical tree planter, which was pulled by a tractor.  The trees were planted at a high density of 900 trees per acre to mimic close tree spacing of natural regeneration.  The project planted a mixture of one and two-yr old seedlings to help increase survival.  The Indiana Division of Forestry will provide the “on the ground” sustainable management of the project, including weed control. 

Project partners include Indiana Forestry & Woodland Owners Association, Indiana Department of Natural Resources Division of Forestry, Armstrong World industries,and the Hardwood Forestry Fund.

Note from Indiana Forestry and Woodland Owners Association: “We truly appreciate the support of the Hardwood Forestry Fund to allow us to do this worthwhile project. With your help we were able to convert state forest property from fields to new forest and look forward to watching it toward maturity.”

  • Project Initiation Date: Mar-09
  • Location: Jackson-Washington State Forest , IN
  • Number of Trees: 20000
  • Number of Acres: 21
  • Tree Species: Red oak, White oak, Black walnut, Black oak, Black cherry
  • Project Partner: Indiana Forestry & Woodland Owners Association

Wisconsin LaCrosse Comprehensive Fisheries Area

Wisconsin LaCrosse Comprehensive Fisheries Area

Project proudly sponsored by Armstrong World Industries

This reforestation project is located within the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources LaCrosse Comprehensive Fisheries Area on two sites known as Hornby Creek and the Olson Property in Vernon County, Wisconsin.  These properties are located within the Driftless Area of Wisconsin and provide critical nesting habitats for neo-tropical forest interior songbirds.   

Both planting sites are former agriculture fields that have been taken out of production.  Past management has allowed natural succession to take place, with very little response.  The planting sites are located on upland ridges.  These sites require pre-planting site preparation to control competing vegetation.  During the fall before planting the sites were mowed and treated to control brush and grasses.  Both sites were machine planted in spring 2010 using a high density design in order to capture the site quickly with trees and produce higher quality timber form.  A follow-up release treatment to control weeds is planned for two growing seasons after planting.  As the plantings develop, they will close gaps in the forest landscape, thus providing additional habitat for plants and animals needing interior forest conditions, as well as providing high quality sawtimber for economic benefits. 

The major regeneration problem for the area is high deer populations.  This situation will be mitigated by the high density planting techniques and species diversity within the plantations.  If seedling levels fall below desired stocking levels other techniques like deer repellents and temporary deer exclusion fence will be used. Effective follow-up weed control will also help to maintain good tree vigor and growth rates so that some degree of browse can be tolerated

Project Partners:
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR), Division of Forestry provides project oversight, technical expertise and fiscal management.
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Nurseries Program provides trees for the initial planting and any replacements trees needed.
Vernon County Land and Water Conservation Department will support the overall coordination of the project.
Southwest Badger RC&D will work with WDNR staff on seedling survival monitoring.

Update from project manager July 2010:
“Trees are growing well this summer, we have had quite a bit of rain here. Planning for a fall mowing and release from grasses and other weeds.”

  • Project Type: Tree Planting
  • Project Initiation Date: Spring 2010
  • Location: Hornby Creek and Olson Properties, Vernon County , WI
  • Number of Trees: 14,940
  • Number of Acres: 12
  • Tree Species: Red oak, White oak, Black Cherry, Black Walnut, Butternut
  • Project Partner: Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Armstrong World Industries

Walnut Planting at Purdue University’s HTIRC

Walnut Planting at Purdue University’s HTIRC

This research project is conducted in partnership with Purdue University’s Hardwood Tree Improvement and Regeneration Center (HTIRC). The work focuses on high quality planting stock and coppicing. Earlier research has discovered that coppicing produces stems that are superior to transplanted seedlings. The research will determine how different walnut families react to coppicing treatment and to determine if coppicing can improve the stem
quality of walnut families that have a poor genetic potential for stem quality as transplants. Superior trees may be selected as new seed trees for HTIRC’s walnut improvement program.

Comments from our project manager summer 2010: “The walnut family block plantings survival is over 90% with good growth to this point in time, as indicated by the photo. Our thanks go to the HFF for your assistance in establishing successful hardwood plantings.”

This project is sponsored by all Hardwood Forestry Fund members.

  • Project Type: Tree planting
  • Project Initiation Date: 2008
  • Location: West Lafayette , Indiana
  • Number of Trees: 4,480
  • Number of Acres: 6
  • Tree Species: Black walnut
  • Project Partner: Purdue University, USDA Forest Service, Indiana Department of Natural Resources

The Hardwood Forestry Fund is a 501 (c) (3) educational foundation that establishes sustainable forests for future generations' natural resource needs. Contributions are tax-deductible.

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