Tom's Blog

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Update of oak woodlands web pages

The oak woodlands at Pleasant Valley Conservancy are getting more attention in our restoration work, so it seemed a good idea to update the web pages. I have added some new air photos prepared by GIS, and restructured the rest of the pages. Also added is a fairly extensive treatment of the roadside flora of County F. This roadcut has been an important source of seeds for our restoration work. Thanks to a 2011 Landowner Incentive Program (LIP) grant, we are able to do a lot more work on this fine oak woodlands.
I am not too happy about the resolution of the above photo. It looks great in GIS, but the demands of the web don't permit use of the original (almost 4 MB in size). However, I think it shows well the contrast between the north-facing slope, where tree density is very high and the canopy is over 90% closed, and the south-facing savanna, where the canopy is only 20-50% closed. Double clicking on this photo will make it larger.

Note the blue dotted line through the middle of the woods. This is a woods trail that we maintain and is open to anyone. As part of the LIP grant, our crew went through with brush cutters and herbicide and cleaned out the blow-downs and other annoying brush. It is strictly a walking trail, so don't expect a wide patch. We have actually had this trail for almost 30 years, but only recently have we had time to maintain it. Keep it in mind for next spring, especially in May, when the trilliums and large yellow lady slippers are in bloom.

I have also restructured the material in the web pages on the woods burns. It's still not detailed, but does give an overview of what we are doing. We have now had several successful fall burns and are initiating a two-year cycle for these burns. Whether we'll be able to keep to that schedule will depend a lot on the fall weather.
Although most of the County F road cut has been in good shape for years, we never were able to finish the last 500 feet until recently (photo above). This was a major November effort (thanks in part to the LIP grant). Amanda has now been clearing all the invasive shrubs in the woods above the road cut, and if we are blessed with reasonable weather, we may have this whole northeast corner cleared before spring.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home