Seedlings Still Available For Spring 2024 Planting

Winter hasn’t quite let loose its grip on the Wilson State Nursery fields in Boscobel, but the warm weather has turned any snow into puddles and with limited frost in the ground, it won’t be long. These conditions in Wisconsin’s fields and forests make it easy for landowners to hike their property and consider ways to enhance them. And as thoughts turn to spring, the staff in the Wisconsin DNR’s reforestation program are readying themselves to harvest tree and shrub seedlings from the cool, moist soil.

For those considering activities to improve their properties, the DNR reforestation program has plenty of seedlings still available to create and enhance wildlife habitat, stabilize the soil, block winter wind and snow and provide a future shady spot to sit and enjoy a morning.

Conifers available include white cedar, jack, red and white pine, black and white spruce and tamarack. All are great for providing thermal cover to wildlife in the winter and privacy along a property line. White cedar prefers wetter conditions and is actively sought by white tailed deer for browsing. Jack, red and white pine grow fast and can utilize drier sites. These trees are great trees to reforest open areas and will provide food and cover for wildlife. Spruce tends to grow slower but produces a dense hedge for all critters to hide amongst. Hardwoods available include river birch, black cherry, hackberry, bur, red, swamp white and white oaks, sycamore and black walnut. Most of the hardwoods provide forage or mast for wildlife (or even humans!) and grow well on fertile soils. Black cherry will begin producing fruit as soon as 5 years and birch will provide buds for grouse even faster. Shrubs available include highbush cranberry, hawthorn, and hazelnut. All are great mast producers and browse for birds and other wildlife from summer through late winter.

Consider talking to a local forester to get more information on tree planting and forest management. A good tree planting plan can focus a landowner’s efforts and create a strategy to achieve all their property goals.

Visit our webpage or contact our nursery hotline at (715) 424-3700 for the latest information on seedling availability and to place an order.

Seedlings sold by the Wisconsin state nurseries are to be used for reforestation, wildlife habitat and windbreak and erosion control purposes and must be planted in Wisconsin. Answers to the most common questions are available on the “Frequently Asked Questions” page.

Jeremiah Auer, Regeneration Specialist
(715) 459-1999

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