In the world of forest stewardship, we continuously encounter events in the forest that run the gamut from encouraging and hopeful to discouraging and depressing; that just goes with the territory. Because one ongoing battle (so much for zen!) is trying to keep our precious baby cedar seedlings from getting munched by the plentiful elk, it was more than heartening to usher in the new year with the discovery of this pair of thriving cedars – doing just what they are supposed to do, but almost never do.
Eight years ago, we logged a 1.5 acre patch that was badly infected with laminated root rot. The following winter, two things happened: a strong wind storm blew down a number of trees along the edge of the area, and we planted the entire area is rot resistant species – cedar, maple, and alder. In the photo you see a pair of cedars, planted in the crater of a large root wad, that have been missed by the elk and soared to a wonderful six feet. What does hope in this new year look like? It looks like this!