Adopt-A-Tree Event on Earth Day
On Earth Day, April 22, 2017, Cedar Lakes Conservation Foundation (CLCF) invited volunteers to plant trees at the Timmer Nature Preserve in the town of West Bend. In the year 2000, what had long been an established practice of the Foundation — planting several hundred to thousands of trees each spring — became the Adopt-A-Tree program. It was an annual event until 2010 and is designed to provide for the long-term restoration and care of woodlands that improve the watershed protected by CLCF.
Members of Boy Scout Troop 762, led by Tom Schilling and Chuck Herdeman, arrived first to begin the work day under sunny skies. CLCF Board member Tod Maclay provided a combination of 2000 one-year-old red oak, 2000 one-year-old white oak, 1000 three-year-old shagbark hickory, 500 one-year-old pin oak, and 200 choke cherry seedlings to cover the nine-acre parcel. Seven of those acres were to be planted by machine in the northernmost area. The central two acres were to be hand planted in a more scattered and varied pattern to mimic nature. A cover crop of oats had been seeded four days prior to allow for retention of soil moisture and seed suppression through the first growing season. CLCF plans to place tree shelters and stakes around each seedling before fall to protect them from winter deer browse and the girdling of bark by rodents. Later in spring, CLCF will plant the two southernmost acres with two separate mixes of grasses, legumes and native forbs.
As the morning progressed, more and more volunteers climbed up the slope from Timmer Bay Road toward the work site and spread out over the next two ridges toward the back acreage, shovels in hand.
“Many hands make light work”, and over 50 pairs of hands eventually (and well ahead of schedule) filled in the two acres of rolling terrain.
The youngest volunteer was just two years old, younger than some of the seedlings!
Geoff Maclay, who founded the non-profit CLCF in 1974, arrived at high noon to join his son Tod by the tractor.
He was greeted by CLCF Board members Jerry Gensch, Lee Krueger and Linda Mutschler, and Joe Mantoan, who had been planting seedlings from the back of the machine, and many long-time friends.
At the end of the day, 4500 trees were planted. The remainder will find homes on other properties in the area.