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December, 2006

Tree Seedlings Available For Sale

The Virginia Department of Forestry has more than 45 species of tree seedlings
  for sale to landowners in the Commonwealth. With 90 years of experience in
  the seedling production business, VDOF seedlings are well suited for Virginia
  soils and climate.

The Virginia Department of Forestry has more than 45 species of tree seedlings for sale to landowners in the Commonwealth. With 90 years of experience in the seedling production business, VDOF seedlings are well suited for Virginia soils and climate.

The Agency operates two tree nurseries – the Augusta Forestry Center, near Waynesboro, and the Garland Gray Forestry Center in Sussex County. Together, the two facilities produce more than 35 million seedlings annually.

“We have quite a selection of hardwoods, pines and spruce,” said Dwight Stallard, nurseries manager. “And we offer them for sale in various quantities – from 50 to 1,000 or more – with some selling for less than six cents per seedling.”

Deputy State Forester John Carroll said the Agency is offering one very special commemorative tree in limited quantities.

“We are very pleased to offer the Jamestown Cherrybark Oak this year,” he said. “As the nation prepares to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the Jamestowne Colony, these special trees were grown from acorns handpicked on Jamestown Island and would make a great addition to almost any property.”

Historical records indicate that the Cherrybark Oaks Colonists used the straight-grained tree for everything
  from bateau paddles to simple furniture. They also shipped back to England
  tons of boards they cut for use by craftsmen there to build fine furniture
  and buildings.were among the most prized discoveries of Captains Christopher Newport and John Smith when they arrived on the island in 1607. Colonists used the straight-grained tree for everything from bateau paddles to simple furniture. They also shipped back to England tons of boards they cut for use by craftsmen there to build fine furniture and buildings.

The Jamestown Cherrybark Oaks are 2-year-old seedlings that range in height from 18 inches to 40 inches. They are available in quantities as small as five seedlings.

For more information or to order any of the more than 45 species of tree seedlings, visit the Agency website at www.dof.virginia.gov and click on the seedling catalog. All orders from the catalog are delivered to buyers via UPS.

Fall Fire Season 2006 Ends

Virginia’s fall wildland fire season ended yesterday on a relatively quiet note – much like the entire 47-day period. Officials with the Virginia Department of Forestry responded to 42 fires that burned 563 acres – numbers that are in stark contrast to the 2006 spring fire season that saw 1,208 fires burn more than 12,847 acres across the Commonwealth.

“The wet weather this fall really made the difference,” said John Miller, VDOF’s director of resource protection. “Throughout the fall fire season, virtually all portions of Virginia received solid amounts of rainfall every few days. This helped reduce the threat of wildland fire.”

During the same period (October 15 – November 30) last year, the Commonwealth experienced 107 fires that burned 1,010 acres.

“While we are pleased that there were far fewer fires this fall than last fall, we are already looking ahead to make sure that we are ready for whatever comes our way next March and April,” Miller said. “All the leaves, twigs and branches that came down during the last few weeks will dry out over the winter and become fuel for wildland fires in the spring.”

Miller reminds everyone that just because the “official” fall fire season has ended, it doesn’t mean that wildland fires can’t still occur – they can. So continue to take great care anytime you use fire in or near Virginia’s woodlands. For more information, log on to www.dof.virginia.gov or www.firewisevirginia.org.

Smokey Helps Make ‘Operation Cops for Kids’ a Success

Smokey Bear was on hand to greet the children and their parents.

More than 250 children participated in “Operation Cops for Kids” – an annual program sponsored by the Gate City Police Department as a safe alternative to traditional trick-or-treating. This year, Smokey Bear was on hand to greet the children and their parents.

Gate City Police Chief Jason Cox said that Smokey’s presence was an excellent addition to the program, and he has already extended an invitation to Smokey to take part in next year’s event.

R-6 Regional Forester Ed Stoots said, “Russell Proctor and Roger Carter did a good job working with the children and their parents. They enabled Smokey to deliver his message to several hundred people in an environment well suited for such an interaction.”