Saturday, April 24, 2010

Woodland Worries

Saturday, April 24, 2010

26 degrees and frosty white this morning on the greening grass and truck windshield. Highs going to +60 today before another front moves in so I have to get moving here. Just finished a walk with Karl the Wonder Dog and he is about snorted out after expressing dissatisfaction for the number of moose that intruded upon "his" domain. Didn't see any this morning but the track of one actually hid my palm inside its borders. Moose move around a lot this time of year and night travelers must use caution as hitting a moose with your car is a very unpopular sport. Moose don't bother flower or vegetable gardens but they have a habit of rearranging your fencing and leaving deep holes as they plod through fresh soil.

A couple days ago I was standing beside the wood splitter working up some more wood for winter 2011-12. I always try to stay a year and a half ahead of the wood chores to insure that the wood is appropriately dried. It makes for better fires in the Hearthstone and safer burning, less chance of a chimney fire. As I split away, I noticed the prevalence of long white larva in the wood. Some type of borer I guess but they were obvious in several pieces of birch and also in a sugar maple. Now I'm not an entomologist so the real identity remains a mystery but I am on track to figure some of this out.

Back in January we received a letter in the mail from The Vermont Department of Forest and Parks. The letter was being sent to anyone who had recently acquired any forest land in Vermont and it afforded an opportunity for a visit by a volunteer forester to walk the land and offer suggestions for forest management. I put the letter aside as snow in January is deep enough here that I wasn't that interested in traversing mountains on snow shoes. A couple days ago I filled out the invitation and slid it in the mail. I'll keep you posted on what I learn including the name of the borer in our birches. I'm sure that if you own some land in Vermont, the Forest and Parks website is the place to start. The Vermont Woodlands Association and Vermont Coverts: Woodlands for Wildlife, Inc. are two other valuable resources.

Writing from the mountain above Peacham Pond where the sun has the thermometer up to 42 but the real temperature hidden in frost.

George Africa
The Vermont Gardener
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1 comment:

Sylvana said...

I would have guessed that if deer were garden destroyers, moose would be garden Armageddon! Still, I'm glad that I don't have moose in my garden.

Hope the borer isn't anything too serious.