A tree farmer's lament

Planting and growing trees isn’t a risk-free proposition. Besides the obvious threat from wildfire, there are a diseases, root rot, deer, elk and even bears that can put a ding in your plans. But mostly, in western Oregon we rarely worry about weather.

However, this year’s warm, dry summer took a toll on our seedlings. By the time rain fell in September, it was too late for most of the trees my husband and I planted last winter. At our home, 60 percent are brown and dead. We haven’t yet traveled to our timberland near Mist in the Coast Range to check their status but hopefully we’ll see a higher survival rate since most were planted two winters ago.

This winter only 120 Douglas-fir seedlings will be planted on both properties – one bagful – which makes this tired tree planter happy.

My dream for next year? No winter planting! Wish us luck.

Kathy Storm
Business Manager