Monday, February 29, 2016

NOW HIRING: Position Available Immediately

District Program Administrator

Provides oversight of staff and plan of work on behalf of the district board of supervisors.
Min. of 4 year degree and/or possession of the following traits: accounting, budgeting and record keeping, time and personnel management, effective leadership, and proficient communication skills, both oral and written.
Knowledge of MS Work, Excel, Quickbooks needed.
Resume & cover letter must be received by 4PM, 3/11/16
Guernsey SWCD
335C Old National Rd
P.O. Box 310
Old Washington, OH  43768

Sassafras (Sassafras albidum) - 7th in a series from our Tree Sale

A deciduous tree from the Laurel Family (Lauraceae)
Sassafras is native to the entire eastern half of the United States, including all of Ohio. However, it is most frequent in the acidic soils of southeastern Ohio, and predominates in more southern states with warmer winters; in both habitats, it invades fence rows, abandoned fields, and sprouts up around old barns.
Sassafras is a rapidly growing colonizer, and forms thickets primarily by root sprouts several feet away from the parent plant. Straight-trunked saplings may be repeatedly cut every few years to use as primitive stakes (as is done with some forms of bamboo).
Oil of Sassafras can be distilled from the trunk bark or roots for use in perfuming soaps, while Sassafras tea is made by boiling the bark of roots.
This tree can reach a height of 50 feet tall by 30 feet wide when found in the open. Its brittle green twigs have a spicy aroma when rubbed or crushed, as one would expect from a member of the Laurel Family, which includes the closely related Spicebushes.

Planting Requirements - Sassafras prefers moist, well-drained, acidic, deep soils of average quality, but adapts to soils that are neutral in pH and dry. In alkaline soils, it tends to become slightly chlorotic. It thrives in full sun to partial sun, and is found in zones 4 to 9.
Potential Problems - Sassafras can have several diseases and pests, but these are usually minor or cosmetic in nature. More common problems are moderate chlorosis in high pH soils, and brittle twigs and branchlets that break off under high winds or ice loads, usually on old trees that become more gnarled with age.

The Sassafras  is among several varieties of trees, along with peach, plum and raspberry plants.  Call 740-489-5276 for an order blank

Ohio Wildlife Diversity Conference April 12th

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources annual Ohio Wildlife Diversity Conference will be held April 12 at the Ohio Union at the Ohio State University. The conference will focus on the challenges facing aerial wildlife, and Chip Taylor, founder of Monarch Watch, which focuses on butterfly conservation, will be the keynote speaker.  Registration for the event is now open.   Go to their website to register.

U.S. EPA Releases Lake Erie Phosphorus Reduction Targets

Environmental groups applauded newly released phosphorus reduction targets for Lake Erie released this week by the U.S. EPA.  The targets call for a 40% reduction in phosphorus levels - a move proponents say will minimize low oxygen "dead zones" in the lake's central basin and maintain safe levels of algae growth.
"To protect public health, we must restore the Great Lakes for all those who depend on them," U.S. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said. "The first step in our urgent work together to protect Lake Erie from toxic algae, harmful algal blooms, and other effects of nutrient runoff, is to establish these important phosphorus limits."

Friday, February 26, 2016

River Birch - 6th in a series from our Tree Sale

The southernmost birch of the United States, makes its best growth alongside bodies of water or in occasionally flooded bottomlands. It is native to the Atlantic coastal states, southern states, the lower Midwest, eastern Great Plains, and lower Mississippi River valley. In Ohio, it is native mostly in the south-central counties, and sparsely along Lake Erie. However, it is widely planted throughout Ohio and the eastern United States as an ornamental shade tree, prized for its flaky, orange, ornamental bark and rippling foliage in the breeze.
Its rapid growth rate (even in drier soils) allows for quick shade, and it is often propagated and sold in multitrunked form. When found in the open, River Birch may reach 70 feet tall and 40 feet wide as a single trunked tree, and about 50 feet tall and 40 feet wide as a multitrunked tree. As a member of the Birch Family, it is related to the Alders, Hornbeams, Filberts, and Hophornbeams, in addition to other Birches.

Planting Requirements - River Birch prefers moist to wet, rich, deep, acidic soils. It tolerates drier soils but with subsequent leaf drop from the interior of the canopy in summer, and somewhat tolerates soils of alkaline or neutral pH, but often with resulting chlorosis of the foliage. It grows in full sun to partial sun, and is found in zones 3 to 9.
Potential Problems - Aside from drought-induced leaf drop and yellowing foliage due to high pH soil-induced chlorosis, River Birch may have aphids on its new stem and foliage growth, and leaf spot in wet springs (which also leads to leaf drop). However, it should be noted that River Birch is resistant to the bronze birch borer, which plagues the birches of colder climates when they are planted too far south of their natural range (the warmer winters do not kill off the larvae), and is very heat tolerant in summer.

Call for an order blank - 740-489-5276

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Special meeting of the board of supervisors

A special meeting of the GSWCD board of supervisors has been called for Monday, February 29th at 2PM.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

ECOFA meeting next Wednesday

DOVER, OHIO - At the March 2, 2016, 7:00 PM meeting of the East Central Ohio Forestry Association (ECOFA)we will have Dick Drake, ISA Certified Arborist for Canton City since May, 2013. He will teach us what he has learned about tree pruning.
After working at the Timken Steel Company for 30 years Dick bought tree equipment and cut down trees.  He 'whacked and hacked' at pruning trees until educating himself with reading and forestry seminars.  He discovered the correct way to treat the trees he loves and will be sharing that with our group.

ECOFA is an organization of persons interested in improving their woodlands and in forestry-related topics.  The public is cordially invited to attend the free meetings which are held monthly at the Dover Library, 525  North Walnut St. Dover, Ohio

Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum) - 5th in a series from our Tree Sale

Sugar Maple is a favorite shade tree with reliable fall color, found in the forests and meadows throughout all of Ohio, but flourishing in the cooler climates and more acidic soils of northeastern Ohio and Appalachia. It is valued for its hard, dense, fine-grained and difficult-to-split wood, which is utilized for floors, furniture, veneer, musical instruments, and railroad ties.
The hardness of the wood gives it the alternative common name of Rock Maple. Native Americans invented the process of maple sap collection and its distillation into maple sugar and maple syrup. A native of southern Canada, the greater Midwest, and the Northeastern United States, trees found in the open may easily grow to 80 feet tall by 40 feet wide. As a member of the Maple Family, it is related to all other species of Maple.
Planting Requirements - Sugar Maple thrives when it is planted or transplanted into rich, moderately deep soils having even moisture coupled with good drainage. While it prefers acidic soils, it adapts readily to those of neutral or alkaline pH. Clay soils cause it to struggle more in terms of root penetration to tap into deep soil moisture in times of drought.
The key to the preservation of established Sugar Maples is to not disturb the roots by extensive digging, or compact the soil above them with heavy equipment or vehicles, or a serious decline in tree health will likely occur. Sugar Maple adapts to shady conditions in its youth, but must eventually grow in full sun to partial sun, and is found in zones 4 to 8.
Potential Problems - Sugar Maple does not perform nearly as well in the southern limits of its range (zones 7 and 8), where the heat, humidity, and drought of summer take their toll. More commonly, encroachment of construction traffic and the associated soil compaction, soil grade change, root disturbance, and various pollutions associated with housing construction and subsequent urban conditions do not favor established Sugar Maples, and they often respond with a rapid decline or death when their forest is converted into a subdivision. Sugar Maple also does not like being transplanted into heavy clay soils or to long periods of drought in summer. Verticillium wilt is an occasional disease primarily occurring in wet springs, and leaf scorch is a perennial problem when drought occurs.
The Sugar Maple is one of 10 tree seedlings which will be offered, along with peach, plum and raspberry plants.  Call 740-489-5276 for an order blank.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Shagbark Hickory (Carya ovata) - 4th in a series from our Tree Sale

A deciduous tree from the Walnut Family (Juglandaceae)
Shagbark Hickory, a slow-growing but potentially massive tree located in all of Ohio, is frequently found in dry uplands or moist valleys in association with other hickories and oaks. Its cut timber is prized for making tool handles, athletic equipment, furniture, construction timbers, and firewood. Its "green" wood (or sometimes seasoned but freshly-wetted wood chips) is also sought after for the smoking of meats, especially pork meats. Its sweet and large nuts are relished by squirrels. The most distinctive feature of this tree is its shaggy bark, which peels in long, wide, thick strips from the trunk and branches, giving it the alternative common name of Scalybark Hickory. Its bold-textured, jagged branch structure and thick twigs give it a striking appearance in winter.
A native to most of the Eastern United States, Shagbark Hickory is a climax forest tree in well-drained, moist to dry woodland soils. It grows to 100 feet tall by 40 feet wide when found in the open. As a member of the Walnut Family, it is related to the Walnuts, as well as other Hickories (there are three types, namely the Pecans, the Shagbarks, and the Pignuts).
Planting Requirements - Shagbark Hickory prefers deep, moist, rich, well-drained soils under sunny conditions, but is often found in the dry upland soils of woods or fields because of its superior drought tolerance. It tolerates the shade of nearby trees when young, when its branching is upright and spindly and it first develops its deep taproot system. It is found in zones 4 to 8.
Potential Problems - Shagbark Hickory is virtually disease and pest free, although many insects nibble at its foliage throughout the summer. However, it sends down a constant rain of leaflets, rachises, dead twigs, immature fruits, outer husks, and debris from squirrel feeding from mid-summer until late autumn, presenting a constant clean-up chore and mowing hazard when it is found in urban areas.

The Shagbark Hickory is one of 10 varieties which will be offered in the 2016 Tree Sale held by the Guernsey Soil & Water Conservation District.  For more information and to receive a 2016 Tree Sale order blank, please call 740-489-5276.

Monday, February 22, 2016

This week is Invasive Species Awareness Week!

Why is moving firewood such a bad idea?
Tree-killing insects and diseases can lurk in firewood. These insects and diseases can't move far on their own, but when people move firewood they can jump hundreds of miles. New infestations destroy our forests, property values, and cost huge sums of money to control.

How far is too far to move firewood? And what do you mean by "local" firewood?
When we say local firewood, we are referring to the closest convenient source of wood that you can find. That might be from down the street, or a state forest in your county. As a very general rule of thumb, 50 miles is too far, and 10 miles or less is best. Visit our State-by-state map to help you figure out how far is too far in your area. In many states there are rules, regulations, and quarantines that clearly state how far is too far. Always acquaint yourself with local rules and regulations when transporting wood from one jurisdiction to another.

My firewood has no bugs, holes, burrows, sawdust, or other weird looking stuff on it. Is it OK to transport it?
Even the experts can't always see a couple of pin-head sized insect eggs, or a few microscopic fungus spores, in a pile of wood. These tiny threats are enough to destroy an entire ecosystem. Never assume wood that "looks safe" is OK to move- it is next to impossible for anyone to inspect firewood that closely.

What kind of firewood is safe to move?
The short answer to this is that most packaged heat treated firewood with a USDA APHIS treatment seal is considered safe to move. Please note that just being labeled "kiln-dried" is quite different, and should not be considered safe to move

What can I do with the fallen wood and brush from my property? 
Firewood, brush, and debris from the trees and woods on your property poses no threat to your trees, or to anyone else's trees, as long as you don't move it very far. Letting it rot is totally fine. Chipping it on site to use as mulch under your shrubs is a good idea. Burning it in your stove or fire pit is fun and practical. Even bringing it to a nearby landfill or composting facility is OK, as long as that facility is right in your town. The problem would be if you take it to your cabin a few counties away, or if you stack it on the roadside for strangers to pick up and take it to who-knows-where. That's what you want to avoid- moving it far poses a risk to the trees in that new location.

What about burning old pallets or scrap lumber?
The short answer is that this is OK in some limited circumstances.

What about "fake firewood" as in: compressed wood chip log products, wood pellets, or manufactured logs?
These products are a good alternative to regular firewood, and generally speaking they are safe to move.

If I burn all of my wood completely, is it OK to bring it from far away?
While this might seem reasonable. the answer is still no. You should not be moving firewood far distances. There are simply too many unknowns. What if a little chip of bark falls unnoticed onto the forest floor- and that chip contains invasive insect larvae? Or what if there is a sudden rainstorm, washing fungus spores off the wood, out of the back of your pickup, and into the grass? Even if you intend to burn all the wood completely, you still need to make sure it is local wood. The risks are simply too big.

Oh no- too late! I already moved firewood! How can I dispose of it properly? 
The best option is to burn it quickly, completely, and safely. A bonfire is best, while slower methods (like making sure it all ends up in the wood stove ASAP) are also OK. Make sure to also rake up any dropped leaves, bark, twigs or other debris and burn them as well. Do not leave it there, and do not bring it back to where it was from.

Can I cut wood from my backyard and take it camping if there are no quarantines or pest alerts in my area?
This is not a good idea. Pest infestations can take years to be recognized by the authorities- sometimes trees appear perfectly healthy despite harboring harmful organisms. By the time the tree looks sick, or the quarantine is announced, you could have spread the infestation to all your favorite campsites! Don't take this unnecessary chance. Buy the wood as close to where you burn it as possible.

Where can I find out about firewood information in my state?
Try this link:

Can you recommend a firewood seller in my area?
We can't recommend any particular seller, but here are some helpful hints.
Ask the seller where they got the wood. If it isn't nearby, or if they don't know where the wood is from, you should consider another firewood dealer.
Find out if your state has a safe firewood certification process. If it does, ask to see the seller's certificate.

Why are non-native insects and diseases so much worse than the native ones? 
Native trees have defenses against the insects and diseases that they've been living with for millions of years. Likewise, native predators eat native insects and that keeps their numbers in check. Non-native insects and diseases have no predators in their new homes, and the trees have no natural defenses against them.
Because these foreign bugs don't have anything stopping them, they reproduce really fast and become out of control, killing trees in their wake.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Leaving your comfort zone

Submitted by Jason Tyrell, Ag Resource Specialist  

        One of the hardest things for someone to do is to leave their comfort zone. For some, that may be speaking in front of a crowd, meeting new people or going new places. For others it is simply trying something that is new, or that is foreign to their normal lifestyle.
When it comes to comfort zones and agriculture, many farmers and landowners have been in the same routine for most of their lives. Whether it is a livestock grazing operation or if the landowner is growing corn or soybeans, there are areas of new inventions and ideals that people are unwilling to try.
        One reason some farmers are reluctant to try something new is because of the old saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. I remember hearing this phrase growing up and have even used it in conversations myself. I was out on a farm with a landowner recently who said this to me as we were talking about solutions for resource concerns on his farm. After thinking about it for a little bit, I started to wonder, where we would be if everyone took that philosophy to heart. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, doesn’t just stop us from breaking things that weren’t broken, but it also prevents us from taking something that is good or average and making it great.  We wouldn’t have computers that we could access at our fingertips, airplanes that can carry hundreds of passengers, and horses and donkeys would still pulling plows at every farm in the country. “Nothing GREAT has ever come from staying in your comfort zone”.

        There are many farmers out there that are unwilling to try implementing the no-till system, rotational grazing, or attempting their hand in cover crops, just to name a few. I do get it on some levels. What if you try something and it fails? How long do you try something before you deem it a failure or a success?  If my forage quality and quantity are ok, why change my system? What am I really fixing?

         There is a difference between fixing and improving.  You may have GOOD crop yields in a straight corn, conventional tillage system.  However, is there no room for improvement? When did we as people stop striving for greatness and just settle for ordinary or the average.  To get above the average, sometimes you have to get out of that comfort zone. Sometimes this means trying something new. It doesn’t mean that you have to completely revamp your entire operation all at once.
The first step is always the hardest. Just trying something that is new can be scary. Failure is always a possibility, but remember…. so is success. If you have been using conventional tillage on 200 acres, try no-till on 25 acres just to start off. Try it for a few years and compare the results.  Same thing goes for cover crops. If cover crops are new to you, talk with people who are currently using them. Talk with local SWCD’s and Extension Offices. There are many different combinations of cover crops that you can implement on your farm. You don’t need to do it all at once. Change should be gradual;  that way you can see what works for you and what doesn’t.

           If you are considering rotational grazing, try and realize what you as a person can handle. If you can’t rotate every 2 days, then don’t start off trying to do that. Depending on number of paddocks, paddock size, size of herd and types of forage, you may be able to start at a 7 or 5 day rotation and go from there.  Maybe there is a different type of feed or vaccination type or style. You never know what works best for your operation until you try it for yourself.
Next step is maintaining what you have introduced. Trying something just once is not enough. I have heard stories of farmers who switched from conventional till to the no-till system and saw a drop in yield the first year or two; however, it paid off in the long run and exceeded what they had been producing before. Cover crops will pay off in the long run as well. Soil health and reduced compaction benefits will turn into higher yields and less nitrogen application if legumes are utilized.
           Not everything you do will be an instant success. Just remember to be patient and positive.
The last step is continuing what you have implemented while still searching for new things. Once you realize that there are new and better things out there, keep searching for more options to improve your systems and methods. Not everything is right for everyone, but you will never know if you don’t give it a shot. The biggest regrets people have are the things that they didn’t do. By trying new inventions and seeking new ideas, you are not just getting out of your comfort zone; you are expanding that comfort zone. What is new and scary, will soon become the norm.  So I encourage you to go out there and “get out of your comfort zone”. There could be big rewards for you in the future.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Butternut (Juglans cinerea) - 3rd in a series from the Tree Sale

Butternut Also known as White Walnut, this relative of Black Walnut is slower growing and much less frequently encountered than its well-known cousin. Butternut prefers moist bottomlands and ravines like Black Walnut, but its lightweight wood is beige-pink in color and is not nearly as sought-out for making veneer and furniture. Its kernel within the fruit gives it the common name of Butternut, as it is sweet and very oily. The Native Americans reportedly boiled the kernels to extract the oil, which was then used like butter. The kernels were also pickled in vinegar by the early settlers.
A native of the midwestern and northeastern United States, Butternut is found throughout Ohio, but is less common in the western part of the state. It may mature at 60 feet tall by 50 feet wide when it is found in the open. Although similar to Black Walnut in superficial appearance, its elongated nuts, hairy stems, and flattened, shiny ridges on mature trees make it recognizable as a different species. As a member of the Walnut Family, it is related other Walnuts and to the Hickories (including Pecan, another tree with sweet-tasting nuts).
Planting Requirements - Butternut prefers deep, moist, rich, well-drained soils under sunny conditions, especially the bottomlands of rivers and creeks. It also performs reasonably well in relatively dry, rocky soils, especially those with limestone outcrops in higher pH soils. Butternut grows in full sun to partial sun, and is found in zones 3 to 7.
Potential Problems - Butternut, like its cousin Black Walnut, produces the root chemical known as juglone, and drops its leaves prematurely due to late summer drought. However, this species of Walnut is very subject to a bark canker that causes twigs, branchlets, large limbs, and ultimately the entire tree to die. As a timber tree, it is no longer of significant value, but its elongated nuts are still prized for their sweet, buttery taste.
The Butternut is one of 10 tree seedlings which will be offered, along with peach, plum, and reaspberry plants.  Call 740-489-5276 for an order blank

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

ECOFA newsletter

ECOFA was founded to provide information to the members and the general public about multiple use management of forestland

Attendance:  Kathy Meyers, Koral Clum, Alan Water, Patsy Schmuki, Mike Schmuki, Chuck Frink, Rob, John Quimby, Jeremy Scherf, Dave Myers
Alan reported that the projector is ordered and will be installed by the March meeting.
The Annual Banquet will be held April 6th at the same church as last year; Mike made the motion to charge $15 for the banquet meal, seconded by John. Motion passed.  Registration deadline is March 25th. Set up time will be 5 PM,  members should be there by 5:30, and the meal will be served at 6:30PM.  Discussion of the length of the live auction led to the decision to limit the live auction to 35 items, with the other donations being in the silent auction.  Jeremy graciously agreed to be our “auctioneer” again this year. We have yet to secure a speaker  for the banquet.  Koral suggested the topic of the ‘’ONX” app available, that shows boundary lines, your position on the property and the landowners names.  Their employee is very proficient with it. She will check with him to see if he is willing to brief us on it at the Annual Meeting. 
The Ohio Tree Farm System Phone Survey was discussed. 600 of the 700 surveys sent out have responded.  Alan has 170 follow-ups for ECOFA.  Last month’s signup sheet had 12 persons that volunteered to do phone calls.  Alan gave the volunteers a cover letter explaining the telephone process and a script to follow.  Copies of the surveys were handed out also.  The survey information can be written on the survey sheet or input into the computer survey.  The main purpose of the survey is to contact people to see if they want to stay in the OTFS database or even participate.  If they do, then request the landowner fill the survey out with you, the volunteer.  Alan “tested” the phone survey with 10 landowners on the list. He made contact with all but 2, who never got back to him.  The 8 he did contact wanted to remain in the database.  Other regional forestry groups are helping out as well.
The Tree Farm System is reaching out to the regional forestry groups for volunteers for their Mentor Program.  Mentors would be available to answer questions of other tree owners. Each regional forestry group will send the individuals to be trained as mentors.  We will ask for 6 to 8 individuals who would be willing to mentor.  Alan will discuss this with the general session after the treasurer’s report.
Treasurer’s Report:  Alan – dues are coming in well.   We received a donation from Linda Sims for the Wooding donation to the Forestry Camp. We also received $6 for refreshments at the last meeting.
Forestry Camp Donation:  OFA Camp was in the red in 2015. Rob moved to donate $1000.00 to the Camp, Chuck seconded, motion passed to send $1000 to OFA for forestry camp.
JEREMY:   has been selected as regional forester for this area of the US.  He will be attending the National Convention to see if he is selected as National Tree Farm Inspector of the Year.
The General Meeting commenced at 7:00PM with the Pledge of Allegiance. President Kathy Myers introduced the new officers and trustees for 2016.  New guests this evening were Phil from Guernsey County and Dave from Tuscarawas County.   Alan gave the treasurer’s report. 76 members are signed up for 2016. 
The Ohio Tree Farm System applied for a grant from the National Tree Farm System for a mentoring program in which current tree farmers could answer questions of new tree farmers.  They received enough funds to have regional training sessions. Anyone interested in becoming a mentor should contact Kathy .
   Sarah Kapper from Stark SWCD informed the group that they have their annual tree sales program underway.  Persimmon and pawpaw are included on their order form. 
Levi Arnold of Guernsey SWCD informed the group that this month’s  Wild Wednesday” is about Asian Carp.  The meeting starts at 6PM at the Deerassic Park, across from Salt Fork State Park. He brought order forms for their current tree sales for anyone interested in ordering them.

Jeremy Scherf was excited to see lots of familiar faces from Guernsey County at tonight’s meeting.  OFA has new OFA Camp posters out.  Kathy Myers of our forestry group had recommended to the OFA that posters are better to send to schools than just brochures, so the kids could see it.  They changed up this year’s poster so it looks different, and better catches the kid’s attention.   The forestry camp needs more campers than last year to break even. This year’s goal is to have a timber harvest during camp, so the campers can see an active harvest, see how the trees are marked, and the management during harvest.  Randy Clum will be overseeing the cut.  .  The Division of Forestry has a new Bare Root Planting Chart out.

   Jeremy introduced our speaker.   Lynn M.  Abrams-Spilker is of Cambridge, Ohio and specializes working with farm and timber bookkeeping and taxes, as well as financial advising, and starting of small businesses.  She is located in Cambridge across from Wal-Mart on SR 209.
Her goal with her clients is to help you establish and use an effective farm and record keeping system for your farm or timber operation so you can see where you are, and where you are going, so to eliminate “surprises” in your business planning. 
   Bookkeeping can be as simple as a wire bound notebook, or on computer spreadsheets or QuickBooks.  If you can write in a check register, you can handle doing QuickBooks.  These are tools to use to keep track of your expenses and income.  Your expenses can be deducted annually or at the time of your timber sale.  The main thing is that they have to be organized in some way, for your tax consultant to help you.  She recommended NOT using the “Wal-Mart bag” of organizing.  Write your time down.  Chainsaw purchase and repair. Mileage. Tractor, mower, and other equipment purchase or repair. If you go to a meeting or a tree farm tour,  to better your knowledge of your tree farm, write it down and anything else that you do to update or maintain your tree farm.  These are all expenses.  “Schedule F” is the Profit or Loss From Farming sheet on your tax form.  It lists various labels eligible for deduction. 
She also explained the Capital Gains or Losses sheet on your tax form.  If you didn’t have an appraisal done at the time of your tree farm purchase, you can have a forestry consultant “back-grow” your tree farm to determine the value of the trees at time of the purchase of the land.  If you sell 60% of the trees, you would use 60% of the purchase-date value of the timber .as a basis
Decision making is made a lot easier when you know what your profit and losses are. You should be doing your decision making in October. QuickBooks puts this at your fingertips. You can do a previous year comparison to help you see where you are heading, or where you need to go, or do.  A balance sheet shows you what you own and what you owe, and makes you see if you have a positive or negative equity. This all helps you to create a strategy and monitor your progress.  At this point you can set your goals.  Are you reaching your goals?
Thank you, Lynn, for a very informative presentation!

Another inspector award for Jeremy Scherf

Jeremy Received a National Honor .
  On Feb 11th  2016  in Seattle WA.    Jeremy was awarded the National  Outstanding Tree Farm Inspector of the Year.   We are so lucky that he keeps our organization as a priority.  Congratulations to Jeremy and family..  

Belmont, Guernsey, Harrison, and Jefferson, Counties
    Jeremy Scherf
   2050 East Wheeling Ave.
   Cambridge, OH 43725-2159
   Phone 740-439-9079
   Toll free 1-866-274-0102
   Fax 740-432-7711
   Office day is Wednesday
Erie, Lorain, Huron, Medina, Ashland, Richland, Wayne, and Holmes counties  John Jolliff
    950 ODNR Mohican Rd. 60
    Perrysville, OH  44864
        Phone   419-938-6222
Carroll, Columbiana, Mahoning, Stark and Tuscarawas Counties
    Dan Bartlett
    3601 New Garden Road
    Salem, OH  44460-9571
    Office day is Wednesday
Coshocton, Muskingum, Noble and Monroe Counties
    Adam Komar
    6665 Cutler Lake Rd.
    Blue Rock, OH 43720-9740
    office day Wednesday
Knox, Morrow, Licking, & Perry Counties
    Andy Sabula
     8995 E. Main St
   - Plant Industry Building
     Reynoldsburg, OH 43068

Greetings from your new ECOFA Vice President
 If you have topic ideas for the monthly meeting, please email them to me at, or give me a call on our business line – 330-364-2386.  I would be interested in hearing what you are interested in hearing/learning about!  I would welcome a list of topics, or if you have personally heard an excellent speaker somewhere in your travels, I would love to have their contact information, or a lead that might help me track them down.  Thanks!-  Koral Clum”

Note: Lola Lewis was to be our speaker for March and her topic was tree pruning.   She has notified us that she cannot make it that night and has contacted Canton city arborist Dick Drake to fill in…

Upcoming Events or Seminars

Wild Wednesday programs will occur on the last Wednesday of month with this month’s meeting at Deerassic Park near Cambridge with a class on Asian Carp.
February 27th , in Reynoldsburg, is a Winter Tree and Shrub ID session
Ohio Woodland, Water & Wildlife Conference
Wednesday, March 2, 2016Mid-Ohio Conference Center,890 West Fourth St Mansfield OH  44906  
Please join us for the day.  Continuing education credits for ISA and SAF will be offered where appropriate.  Registration  is $60 before 2/15/2016 and $80 after that. Call 614-688-3421 for questions
March 9th and 10th in Columbus the Ohio Forestry Association will conduct their annual meeting with awards.  The deadline for reservations is 3/4/2016 after that date the dinner price is increased.
Banquet Reservation Form
Our annual banquet is on April 6th at St John’s Church basement .  The silent auction starts at 5:30 PM and the dinner will be served at 6:30 pm.  Please fill out this form and send it in by March 25th so that we can plan for the dinner.
No of people attending ______X $15 =_______
Make your check out the ECOFA and send inwith this form completed to PO Box 486,  Carrollton,  OH.,  44615ZH
Hope to see you there and don’t forget to bring an auction item

PO Box 486
Carrollton, OH  44615

Our new meeting location is the Dover Public Library in the meeting room.   The address for the Dover Library is 525 North Walnut St.  Dover, Ohio

Mar 2nd Richard Drake – Proper pruning techniques
Apr 6th ECOFA annual banquet and auction….at St. Johns church in Dover
May 4th John Quimby –Biological controls on the tree farm
June 1st Bob Hart---making sure you are being treated right by Oil and Gas companies.
 The Dover Public Library can be easily found by getting off I-77 at the Dover exit No. 83 (Rts 39 and 211).  Take rt. 211 east (at the cemetery Rt. 211 turns to the right) to West 5th ST. and Turn left on West 5th. To Walnut St and turn left again to the Library on your right.  There should be street parking there and a gravel lot around the corner on west 6th .st.

Have a safe and Happy Holiday season with blessings of joy to all our family foresters

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Cover Crops for Cattle?

Cover crops make sense for cattle producers

Sarah Carlson has been working with cover crops since 2008, conducting research trials across the Midwest for Practical Farmers of Iowa.She says there is still much to learn about the.....(Click the link below to read more and listen):

Transition to No-Till

Transition to no-till

A soil health expert says transitioning to a no-till system will require changes to how farmers fertilize and scout their crops.Barry Fisher works for the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Indiana where he helped launch a conservation cropping systems initiative.He tells Brownfield as producers reduce tillage and organic matter builds, the carbon cycle will be effected.“That also effects your nitrogen cycle, so rather.....(To read more and listen, Click the link below):

White Oak (Quercus alba) - 2nd in a series from the Tree Sale

A deciduous tree from the Beech Family (Fagaceae)
White Oak, native to the entire eastern half of the United States, is found throughout all of Ohio, in habitats ranging from dry forests and fields to mesic woodlands and downslopes. Like many members of the White Oak group, the undersides of its leaves are white-green, and its wood is a light-colored beige that is almost white when freshly cut; hence its common name. It is the most important timber tree of the White Oak group and in fact one of the most important hardwoods, with its hard, heavy, tough wood used as lumber for beams, railroad ties, flooring, barrels, furniture, and many other uses. Its canopy is more spreading that most other trees in closely-packed mature forests or in open fields, and its fall color is often reddish-brown to reddish-purple, one of the best Oaks in this regard. White Oak acorns are relatively large and often borne in great abundance. It may reach 80 feet tall by 100 feet wide at maturity, when found in the open. As the flagship member of the White Oak group and as a member of the Beech Family, it is related to the Beeches, Chestnuts, and other Oaks.
Planting Requirements - White Oak prefers rich, deep, moist, well-drained, acidic soils, but adapts well to dry and average soils that are neutral to slightly alkaline in pH. It thrives in full sun to partial sun (but is shade tolerant in youth) and is found in zones 4 to 9.
Potential Problems - White Oak is generally a healthy and long-lived oak, with regular but minor cosmetic damage to its leaves and twigs due to chewing insects and pathogens.
There are 10 other tree species, besides peach, plum, and raspberry plants in the tree sale going on right now.  Call for an order blank - 740-489-5276

Friday, February 12, 2016

Red Oak (Quercus rubra) - 1st in a series from our Tree Sale orderblank

A deciduous tree from the Beech Family (Fagaceae)
Red Oak is a major timber tree of the eastern and midwestern United States. The tough, heavy wood of Red Oak has a reddish-orange coloration, and is an important hardwood for the Ohio timber industry, involved in the production of beams, railroad ties, furniture, flooring, and other usages. Along with Pin Oak, it is also one of the few oaks that is an important shade tree in the landscape industry, noted for its brick-red autumn color and its rapid and vigorous growth rate. It is also known as Northern Red Oak (since there is also a Southern Red Oak of the southern United States), and may be found cited in older literature by its previous scientific name of Quercus borealis. Its large acorns mature earlier in the season than those of most other Oaks, thus providing a source of food by late summer and throughout autumn and winter for many forms of wildlife. Reaching 60 feet tall by 70 feet wide when found in the open under urban landscape conditions, it may grow taller and more massive in the wild. As the flagship member of the Red Oak group and as a member of the Beech Family, it is related to the Beeches, Chestnuts, and other Oaks.
Planting Requirements - Red Oak prefers moist, deep, rich, well-drained soils of slightly acidic pH. It adapts readily to dry soils of acidic, neutral, or slightly alkaline pH (some specimens develop chlorosis in high pH soils). It thrives in full sun to partial sun (but is shade tolerant in youth), and is found in zones 3 to 7.
Potential Problems - Other than cosmetic blemishes on its dark green foliage due to minor insect feeding, Red Oak is basically problem-free, although it may on occasion be subject to the standard army of pests and pathogens that afflict the Oaks.
The Red Oak is one of 10 varieties which will be offered in the 2016 Tree Sale held by the Guernsey Soil & Water Conservation District. There are also peaches, plums, and red raspberry plants.  For more information and to receive a 2016 Tree Sale order blank, please call 740-432-5624.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

The Tree Seedling Sale is ON!

Tis’ the season! Tree season that is, the Guernsey Soil and Water Conservation district is holding its annual tree sale. Trees are an awesome natural resource and a great way to give back to the environment. Trees provide people with a numerous amount of both measurable and immeasurable  resources like food for consumption, shade on a hot sunny day, a wind break from a brisk winter wind, a place to view some of your favorite wildlife, and trees help replenish oxygen something we all can’t live without. Trees also provide aesthetic value as many people love the area we live in because of the pretty fall colors produced by Southeastern Ohio’s deciduous forests.  We have a variety of species to choose from this year, all of which are very unique. Tree sale order deadline is March 18th so you have about a month left. For information on what species are available or an order form you can do one of three options

1.) Call the Guernsey SWCD at 740-489-5276.
 2.) Stop at the Guernsey SWCD office located at the Guernsey County Fairgrounds.
 3.) Print off an order form to mail it in.

 If you have any questions about trees to order, soils, wildlife, or anything else related to that please give us a call or stop in.

Ohio Officials Applaud Supreme Court Ruling That Puts U.S. EPA's Clean Power Plan On Hold The U.S

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday voted 5-4 to suspend implementation of the federal Clean Power Plan in the face of an ongoing court battle.  Ohio is among more than two dozen states pushing for the CPP to be thrown out over their protests that the federal government overstepped its authority in releasing the rule.  The plan is aimed at reducing carbon emissions by 2030 by 32% of 2005 levels. But opponents contend the plan will drive up electricity rates, hamper service reliability, and provide little environmental benefits.  The stay was granted along ideological lines, with the order noting that the court's liberal justices - Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan - would have denied the application for a stay.  The order was unique in that it precedes a lower court ruling on the issue that isn't expected until sometime after oral arguments begin in June.

Attorney General Mike DeWine, who in October filed to join the unfolding lawsuit, said in a statement Wednesday he was pleased by the development.   "This unlawful power plan is a power grab to force states into policies Congress has rejected and that would fundamentally alter the economies of states like Ohio," Mr. DeWine said. "This stay is a significant victory, and the 'Power Plan' is yet another example of the Obama Administration overstepping its authority."

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency Director Craig Butler similarly praised the ruling. "By staying U.S. EPA's Clean Power Plan, the Supreme Court got it right," he said. "The State of Ohio has pointed out the serious legal shortcomings of the federal Clean Power Plan on numerous occasions. We will evaluate the decision and determine how it will impact our plans moving forward."

But Mike Hartley, executive director of the Ohio Conservative Energy Forum, said the stay should have no bearing on Ohio's clean energy efforts, adding that "Ohio must move forward."  "While Ohio's conservative leaders have been suspect of the Obama Administration's plan, we must not allow the Clean Power Plan delay to serve as an excuse to keep Ohio's energy future on hold," Mr. Hartley said. "Such a move would be misguided and result in the state falling even further behind the rest of the nation."  Uncertainty surrounding the CPP was among the reasons the Energy Mandates Committee cited in September for its recommendation to continue indefinitely a freeze on Ohio's renewable energy mandates.

Last year, the General Assembly pass a resolution (HCR 29) formally opposing the CPP. The measure passed the House 96-1 and the Senate 32-1.

Ohio Coal Association President Christian Palich called the ruling called it a victory for "Ohio coal families and energy consumers."  "Congress and now our highest court have ruled against the illegal actions of radical EPA bureaucrats, bringing us one step closer to defeating this agenda and ensuring our energy grid has access to reliable and affordable power," Mr. Palich said.

The Ohio Chamber of Commerce, which filed an amicus brief supporting the stay, also applauded the ruling.  "In Ohio's continued pursuit of building a healthy and diverse economy, few things are more important than preserving access to affordable, reliable and predictable sources of energy," Chamber Director of Energy & Environmental Policy Charles Willoughby said in a statement. "Manufacturers and other businesses must have access to energy solutions that best meet their needs, free from government interference and overly burdensome regulatory controls that stifle healthy economic growth."

Ellen Eilers, field organizer for Moms Clean Air Force in Ohio, called the "disappointing and surprising"  "However, this pause does not dismantle the work that has been completed so far to reduce carbon emissions under the plan. We remain confident that the plan will be upheld-on its merits," she said. "We urge leaders in our state to keep working out the details of Ohio's compliance with the plan."

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

USDAs budget proposal includes more money for conservation.

The Obama administration’s final budget proposal for USDA calls for an increased presence in Cuba to increase exports, a reduction in the crop insurance premium subsidy and an increase in conservation funding.

On Cuban trade, the goal is to alert Congress to the expanded trade opportunity available in the island nation, said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack in a Feb. 9 conference call. Cuba imports 80% of their food.

“We believe that having people in Cuba would help facilitate opportunities now and in the future,” he said. “I don’t think that we currently have the authority, absent some direction from Congress to be able to use existing resources within the USDA budget to fund personnel.”

 The proposal includes two proposals to reform crop insurance. The first reduces subsidies for revenue insurance policies that insure the price at the time of harvest. The second reforms prevented planting coverage and removes the optional buy-up coverage.

The changes are being proposed because USDA has been criticized by the Inspector General and the General Accounting Office for management of the crop insurance program, specifically as it relates to prevented planting, Vilsack said.

“We also believe, given the circumstances, that this is a partnership, a balanced partnership, between taxpayers, farmers and insurance companies and the reality is that in some of our . . . in the price harvest loss program, we are funding, or subsidizing 62% or so of the premium, that is taxpayers are. We think it makes more sense in a partnership to be closer to 50/50 so that’s the reason.

“And, you know, the fact is, if you surveyed the United States, if you surveyed the population of the United States, and you posed the question to them about this, I would be surprised if there wasn’t support for the administration’s position,” Vilsack said.

The federal crop insurance program costs the government about $9 billion a year, on average, including $3 billion for private insurance companies to administer and underwrite the program and $6 billion in premium subsidies to farmers.

The reforms are expected to save $18 billion over 10 years.

The administration’s budget proposal increases conservation spending by about $11 million and funds the Environmental Quality Incentives Program at the authorized funding level.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Seeding and termination advice for cover crops

Seeding and termination keys to cover crop success
Posted  by Mark Dorenkamp

A researcher says advancements in seeding and termination have led to better results for farmers using cover crops.
Sarah Carlson with Practical Farmers of Iowa tells Brownfield most producers she works with start experimenting with cover crops by having it flown on.
“After they’ve had a few falls of no moisture, then they move to drilling cover crops to get better establishment.  So planes are still going to be used, but drills are gaining more popularity.”
She says drilling has proven to be more effective........(Click the link below to read more)

Ohio Hunters Harvest more than 188,000 Deer during 2015-2016 Season

COLUMBUS, OH – Hunters checked 188,335 white-tailed deer throughout Ohio’s 2015-2106 deer season, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). Last year, 175,745 deer were checked during the 2014-2015 season.
To help stabilize deer populations, bag limits were reduced this year, and antlerless permit use was eliminated in most counties. This year’s increase can be attributed to the poor mast crop throughout much of the state, particularly the eastern half where many species of wildlife, including deer, rely heavily on acorns as an important source of food. Other reasons for the increase include the more favorable weather for hunters compared to last year and the earlier harvest of agricultural crops.
Deer Management Goals
The ODNR Division of Wildlife remains committed to properly managing Ohio’s deer populations. The goal of Ohio’s Deer Management Program is to provide a deer population that maximizes recreational opportunities, while minimizing conflicts with landowners and motorists.
Until recently, deer populations in nearly all of Ohio’s counties were well above goal. In the last few years, through increased antlerless harvests, most counties are now at or near goal.
The ODNR Division of Wildlife is in the process of revising Ohio’s population goals and is asking hunters who received the survey to help by completing and returning their surveys as soon as possible. Hunters for this year’s survey were randomly selected from list of those who purchased a license and deer permit by Nov. 16. Landowner surveys have already been completed, and hunter surveys were mailed early in December. Public input is an important part of Ohio’s deer management program, and survey participants are asked to complete and return their surveys to ensure that hunters have a clear voice in helping to decide the direction of deer management in Ohio.
Hunting Popularity
Hunting is the best and most effective management tool for maintaining Ohio’s healthy deer population. Ohio ranks fifth nationally in resident hunters and 11th in the number of jobs associated with hunting-related industries. Hunting has a more than $853 million economic impact in Ohio through the sale of equipment, fuel, food, lodging and more, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s Hunting in America: An Economic Force for Conservation publication.
Find more information about deer hunting at
ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at
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Editor’s Note: A list of all white-tailed deer checked by hunters during the 2015-2016 deer season is shown below. The first number following the county’s name shows the harvest number for the 2015-2106 season, and the 2014-2015 season number is in parentheses.
Adams: 4,157 (3,278); Allen: 1,102 (1,027); Ashland: 3,026 (2,903); Ashtabula: 4,844 (4,418); Athens: 3,979 (3,317); Auglaize: 828 (786); Belmont: 3,205 (3,128); Brown: 2,754 (2,596); Butler: 1,382 (1,391); Carroll: 3,557 (3,406); Champaign: 1,242 (1,317); Clark: 759 (755); Clermont: 2,821 (2,689); Clinton: 789 (915); Columbiana: 3,299 (2,996); Coshocton: 5,700 (5,727); Crawford: 1,165 (1,081); Cuyahoga: 814 (725); Darke: 738 (730); Defiance: 1,767 (1,724); Delaware: 1,684 (1,586); Erie: 750 (951); Fairfield: 1,955 (1,931); Fayette: 310 (380); Franklin: 817 (790); Fulton: 802 (736); Gallia: 2,914 (2,564); Geauga: 1,886 (1,859); Greene: 835 (849); Guernsey: 4,435 (4,181); Hamilton: 2,007 (1,743); Hancock: 1,185 (1,116); Hardin: 1,270 (1,149); Harrison: 3,788 (3,448); Henry: 684 (697); Highland: 2,919 (2,662); Hocking: 3,727 (2,856); Holmes: 3,718 (3,625); Huron: 2,204 (2,064); Jackson: 3,194 (2,560); Jefferson: 2,663 (2,565); Knox: 4,465 (4,191); Lake: 908 (897); Lawrence: 2,113 (1,791); Licking: 5,365 (5,281); Logan: 2,071 (1,885); Lorain: 2,459 (2,401); Lucas: 759 (655); Madison: 497 (493); Mahoning: 1,835 (1,991); Marion: 892 (819); Medina: 1,873 (2,013); Meigs: 3,592 (3,125); Mercer: 603 (583); Miami: 833 (835); Monroe: 2,598 (2,162); Montgomery: 684 (780); Morgan: 3,096 (2,822); Morrow: 1,437 (1,537); Muskingum: 4,966 (4,748); Noble: 2,970 (2,419); Ottawa: 424 (488); Paulding: 1,064 (1,072); Perry: 2,867 (2,495); Pickaway: 803 (806); Pike: 2,382 (1,880); Portage: 2,178 (1,968); Preble: 965 (1,020); Putnam: 704 (759); Richland: 3,189 (3,141); Ross: 3,425 (2,921); Sandusky: 874 (935); Scioto: 3,034 (2,148); Seneca: 1,785 (1,677); Shelby: 1,050 (1,118); Stark: 2,760 (2,625); Summit: 1,487 (1,436); Trumbull: 3,293 (3,185); Tuscarawas: 4,922 (4,883); Union: 932 (904); Van Wert: 492 (576); Vinton: 3,059 (2,503); Warren: 1,266 (1,244); Washington: 3,526 (2,954); Wayne: 1,971 (1,923); Williams: 1,836 (1,790); Wood: 841 (1,077) and Wyandot: 1,515 (1,568). Total: 188,335 (175,745).
For more information, contact:
John Windau, ODNR Division of Wildlife
Matt Eiselstein, ODNR Office of Communications