Last year I was forced to remove eight cypress trees from my back yard because a spring snow storm had severely damaged the boughs, snapping a lot of them and causing a pretty serious hazard in my yard and my neighbor’s. It was sad, especially because, in taking out the evergreens, the sub canopy of vine maple had been reduced to stump. A little over a year later, however, the vine maple has returned to the point that it is nearly eight feet tall, with multiple trunks. When it loses its leaves this year I will have to prune it fairly extensively. It seems that trees just want to grow here in Oregon.
This is a picture of trees doing just that. It shows at least four stages of harvest and reforesting. Law requires that if forest land is harvested it has to be replanted in a timely fashion. My experience is that even if law did not require it, that would happen any way. Either naturally or by human intervention. That’s just the way it is.
Compare the facts to an advertisement recently placed in Eugene’s Airport baggage claim area showing a clear-cut hillside and stating “Welcome to Oregon, Home of the Clear Cut.” The owner of the advertisement proudly offers their website for travelers arriving in Lane County to visit. (Portland International Airport, by the way, refused to place the ad.) To see the ad and the related Register-Guard article, click here.
In place of the website offered in the misleading ad, I would offer the following link to see what is really happening in the great forests of our state: Northwest Oregon State Forests Management Plan.
It includes guiding principles, of which this is number one:
1. The plan will recognize that the goal for management of Board of Forestry Lands is to
secure the greatest permanent value to the citizens of Oregon by providing healthy,
productive, and sustainable forest ecosystems that over time and across the landscape
provide a full range of social, economic, and environmental benefits to the people of
Oregon. The goal for management of Common School Forest Land is the maximization
of income to the Common School Fund over the long term.
Now doesn’t that seem like a plan we can grow with?