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Kat and Kevin Yares

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Reclaiming the Forest,
Our own form of Silviculture.

Let me begin by stating that Kat and I have read a plethora of literature before we began to understand the term Silviculture, although we have been practicing this for years on our own. I guess you can call this a reclaiming of the forest, for us albeit, one acre at a time.

Our goal on our little piece of Ozark hill land is to return to an old growth style of forest where the trees can regenerate themselves of the hardwood types of trees. The pine forest which accounts for approximately 20% of the stand on the property is vast in its own regeneration. It takes a lot of work to cut out the young saplings of pine. They are fast growing and very opportunistic in their propagation.

The pines, we have learned are a very thirsty tree with little account for evaporation through the thin needle leaves. Unlike the hardwood species which "sweat" water through the porous membranes of the broad green leaves. Not to mention the compost factor of the fall leaves every year. So little by little we take on an acre at a time.

We are attempting to create an open canopy, which should allow sunlight to hit the forest floor in order to propagate a ground cover. This ground cover in turn, we are hoping and planning, will aid in sustaining a small-scale livestock herd of a few goats and a beef cow once a year. Not to mention the wild life in the hill area. The over all goal is to space the hardwoods in such a way as to allow the trees drip lines approximately 10 to 20 feet of open space.

This in turn we hope will allow a green space to be harvested along with the nuts of the trees. Of course in certain areas of proper air drainage we also hope to start the propagation of the mushrooms.

More on this endeavor as we move along.

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