Every spring, the nursery receives an order for Arbor Day seedlings from Greenwood Elementary.
Greenwood Elementary students plant a class tree.
Nothing unusual there since the reforestation program provides more than 35,000 free seedlings to 4th-grade classrooms throughout Wisconsin every spring. What caught our attention about this order is that each year it included an additional request: a single hardwood seedling. We caught up with the local DNR Forester, Chris Schmitz stationed in Neillsville, to ask about this unique outreach project in Clark County.
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The Division of Forestry created a Natural Regeneration Ad Hoc Team to review and recommend natural regeneration monitoring protocols in an effort to provide a more cohesive statewide strategy for achieving successful natural regeneration. Forest regeneration was identified as an implementation issue in the Division’s Strategic Direction. Forest regeneration monitoring was also identified as an opportunity for improvement in forest certification audits on state lands.
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During the seedling lifting season each spring, it has been a tradition at the Griffith Nursery to offer inspirational words and thoughts to the staff on a dry erase board in the employee break room. Drawing on witticisms from famous athletes, authors, political figures, and comedians seems to provide a bit of levity during an often stressful time.
This past spring, one of the quotations struck a chord with me, as it put a much-maligned tree species into a different perspective:
“The jack pine grows to any shape that suits the light, suits the winds, suits itself.”
~ Milton Acorn
Find the light. Lean into the wind. Survive. Thrive. Be the jack pine!
By Jeremiah Auer, email@example.com, (715) 424-3700