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         The Forestry Forum:

This is an open forum for forestry issues of interest  or that  serve to bring dialog forward regarding forestry today.  

Send in e-mails or entire articles.  Please be civil.

 Each month we will have a new article,  this month see below:
 " Influencing the Outcome".

Click on the links below for past articles:

viewout.jpg

Influencing the Outcome
By  j. a. Kendrick 

For almost three decades, we have worked to prove that our theory of “Ecosystem Forestry, the Ecological Approach”, is feasible, and can create a known outcome- healthier, sustainable, forest ecosystems. Though our original intent was only to influence the outcome of our own forest, over time we developed a hope that our example could influence the outcome of forest management on a grander scale.  

Growing up on ranches in the southwest as a kid, I had an inbred understanding of the interconnectedness of all living things within an environment. We had to work hard to derive what we needed from the resources present, make use of the abundance that nature provided, be frugal in what we took, and nurture the remainder so that it could continue to produce even more. To me, it was simply our way of life, and it made perfect sense that we should take care of the Earth that we love so much. 

My innate understanding of how biology, geology and botany operated, along with good grades in these subjects, enabled me to study “Desert Ecology” in a U of A scholarship program. My eyes were opened to the science of what I understood about nature. Learning Latin names for all the plants & animals, earth functions, and lifeform interactions, was beyond enlightening to me.  Combining education and life experience gave me a viewpoint that others could not seem to identify with at all. While I saw myself as a true Earthling, most people just saw me as a strange, reclusive, nature weirdo. 

That is, until later, when I met my husband. We were true environmentalists long before it became fashionable. Together, we dreamed and planned of our life and our land, which became reality when we found our beautiful piece of Southern Oregon forestland. While others of our generation protested, complained & talked endlessly about influencing forest management, we decided to walk the path of our beliefs. We were convinced that our ideas regarding ecologically sound management of forests would bring about better results than what was currently practiced, and understood that we could only have real control or influence over land that we owned. So, we backed up our convictions with actions. We abandoned our comfortable life, for one of struggle, self-sufficiency, and endless physical labor. It was also one of fulfillment, discovery, and wonder each precious day. 

If you have read our website, book, or articles, you already know what our ideas are regarding ecosystem management. For those who haven’t: We view our forest as a grouping of individual ecosystems, and management for the health of these ecosystems is of paramount importance. These ecosystems are comprised of all the myriad living organisms, physical components, landform, solar aspect, weather, water, soil and many other inputs within an area that create an interwoven web of life. Our forest has many individual ecosystems; from wetland & shady riparian areas, to mossy, damp, north aspect slopes & dry, south aspect slopes.  Our aim is for these systems to be healthy & capable of sustaining the plethora of native trees, plants & forest creatures in each. For us, sustainablility means what the earth is able to sustain- not what man wants it to sustain. Man will always demand more.  

In this area, after generations of logging, forested ecosystems have become out of ecological balance and cannot sustain themselves. They have devolved from conifer forests, to oak /madrone slopes and savannahs. By carefully manipulating natural processes (mimicking those that take place in nature over time) we attempt to accelerate bringing the ecosystems back into balance. We remove unhealthy, insect infested, and damaged trees; Replant tree & shrub species that were native to the area, but which were lost due to human impacts; Thin overstocked areas to allow healthier, larger trees to have more available nutrients, water & sunlight; Remove human debris, such as old cars, junk & trash; Replant & naturalize riparian areas & waterways; Enhance habitat & food sources for wildlife; Prune lower limbs on trees, so that they will  not become fire fuel ladders…and many other activities specific and necessary to improve the health of each area, and the forest as a whole.  

It has meant hard, solitary work, without incentives; large investments of both time & money; and withstanding the slings & arrows of those who do not understand- nor want to understand, what we are doing. My writings have brought curses, threats, taunts & mocking from both sides of the issue over the years. We have wondered, at times, if the sacrifices were worth it…if we made any lasting difference at all. Of course, just walking through our forest makes it all worthwhile on a personal level. In the past few years, we have been encouraged as we speak to people; see that my writings have been utilized & copied; our website widely visited, linked & referenced as being an authoritative example of sustainable forest management. This gives us hope that others may learn from our experience in our own forest experiment here in our private “nature lab” on the forest farm. If we have influenced the outcome of even one forest ecosystem, we have served our purpose as responsible Earthlings.

   

  Please comment on this article:

Comments:


Comment from : 
Reply from jak:
 


        
Click below to read
the Credo
that we live by!



 
E-mail Forum:


This section includes discussion that does not represent our own views. Comments are posted so that you can see the wide array of viewpoints on this one simple issue and the sometimes uncivil attitude expressed by both sides. 

Please note that many of the recent comments posted came from people on websites where jak's articles were published online, titled:
"Forest Farming- The Ecological Approach to Forest Management" 
"
An Ecosystem Approach to Forestry" 
"Ecosystem Services- Making the Link" 
"Ecosystem Services- A Concept Whose Time Has Come"

Follow these links:
 ( given in order noted above)


Comments & Questions:

We have cleared our comments board. We welcome new comments, though they will be reviewed prior to posting.

Many people have asked why- this is due to a mass mail attack from a "group" who does not agree with our forest management activities. It forced us to remove everything and start over to remove the threat of a repeat.



Comment from af:
This does not make any sense. I do not believe a word of it. Corporate fascists do not believe in conservation or anything else except money. This is propaganda pure and simple.

Reply from jak:
Some people will never believe. They have closed minds. The proof of our truth is visible in our website and in our forest.  We have been here a long time and will be here long after protesters have given up the "cause" and gone back home.  There are many ways to an end. Ours has taken a lifetime.

Comment from don r:
Great website. You have so much information. I am working my way through your pages.

Reply from jak:
Glad you like it, hope you are getting something usable. It is a lot of work to maintain and we appreciate hearing from people who visit our site.

Comment from janet v.:
It is encouraging to hear from women in forestry too. We seem to be pushed aside.

 Reply from jak:
Our forest management is a combined effort. We each have a perspective and though we butt heads sometimes, the outcome is more balanced for the input and discussion. Learn enough to know what you are talking about and persevere.  There are plenty of classes available and you will be welcomed, not pushed aside.    



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Wilderville, Oregon