Thursday, November 29, 2012

A Tribute to the Oak Tree

Lately it seems like walnut trees have been getting all the attention. And it's well deserved - their high timber value and beautiful wood make them a prized species for growers and consumers. We have a good amount of walnut that grows on the farm and one day, we'll do a post about them.

But today I want to give some praise to a different species. Oak.

Not "The Big Oak" (see below!) but a big white oak on Arington Tree Farm.

Oak is a valuable species in many ways. They're native to Wisconsin, meaning they began growing here naturally, without any human intervention. They are a durable, strong species and have withstood the test of time - surviving the prairie fires started by Native Americans and intense grazing by dairy herds.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Pond projects

Last week our friend Richard Wedepohl visited the farm.

Richard, Joe and Arik checking out one of the farm's ponds.

We had some catching up to do on Wisconsin government affairs, but also wanted him to check out a few of our many ponds. Richard spent his career as a waterways engineer with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and really knows his stuff!

Richard gave us some good ideas - methods to clear up algae, how to keep drainage tracts open, and ways we could even establish a "private pond" on the farm. We'll definitely be putting his recommendations to use in the near future. Thanks Richard!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Planting Prep

Today I worked on some fall planting prep.

What type of trees you may ask? Not trees but wild flowers. Are they still wild if you plant them? 

Conundrums aside, with the relatively wet October this is a great time to disc. The goal is to add a bit of color to this otherwise monochromatic field of grasses.

Secretly, this is my chance to hangout in a nice clean and heated tractor cab. Now I just have to figure out how to prune trees from in here.