Trees for Biodiversity
In addition to working on ratational grazing, we have started a demonstration that is directed toward restoring ecological biodiversity to our farm. Insecticides were not used on the cows for fly control, and certain areas of the farm are being used to encourage wildlife nesting and cover. With help from Carl Mize, ISU Forestry, 50 silver maples were planted in May in an 80′ × 500′ fenced-off “future forest” area. More plantings are planned in the next years as we decide what trees or shrubs might attract desirable wildlife. Twenty Camden poplars and twenty Austree willows were planted in another area to experiment with fast growing trees and to establish a cutting orchard for future use. Dr. Laura Jackson has convinced us to stick with native species, thus the use of poplars and willows is presently considered temporary.