GVM Tree Thinning Project

Meet at Gate 8, Saturday for Tree Thinning Project, 9-11am. 
10/02/09 Update from Judd: Tree Trimming volunteers as of 9:00am Friday
1. Chain saw operators: Judd, Jeff, Odell and a GVM staff person
2. Transporters and sorters move trees to process area and then cut branches to shredder or slash pile truck
3. Branch cutters use long handled nippers to remove the branches: Judy
4. Shredders feed green branches into shredder: Harry and Susan
5. Anything: Ellen, Wynne, Jim Petrie
Steve and I will be marking trees at 1:00 today.

9/28/09 Email from Judd: “At our last Ecology Committee Meeting [9/16/2009] we decided to start a new initiative of tree thinning on GVM Greenbelts and common property. We further decided we should begin with the area around the Association Office, were we can demonstrate what a properly thinned forest should look like. We would have a demonstration forest to complement our demonstration garden. The idea arose from my report on Dave Leatherman’s presentation on Mountain Pine Beetle at the Livermore Community Center, which had a packed audience. Dave emphasized that tree thinning was actually more important as a defense against wildfires.

We also discussed Andre Roy’s project to use the green branches from slash to make his products. Rather than hunting though the slash to locate the requisite green branches, we thought it would be more efficient to obtain them from thinned trees.

I met with Andre Roy on Friday to determine if the trees near the office would be suitable, and he said yes. I met with Steve on Saturday to discuss the project and to scope the project area. While examining the trees it occurred to me that some of the trees could be used for our buck and rail fences, and Steve agreed. Further, any trunks not suitable for buck and rail could be cut into 4 foot lengths for fire wood and given to a group in Red Feather Lakes, Mountain Churches Community Assistance Program, who gives them to needy families and persons in that area.

Thus, we will be able to make beneficial use of almost all the cut trees, a small amount of dead branches would still need to be taken to the slash pile.

The details of the plan follow.

Process
1) Identify and mark trees to be cut – Judd and Steve sometime this week.
2) Tree selection criteria.
a) Remove trees so that branches are at least 10 feet from one another.
b) Remove weak trees.
c) Eliminate clumps of threes.
d) Begin at the outside of the forest then move to the interior, staggering the cutting so that there is visual continuity of trees when looking from the outside.
3) Remove cut trees from the forest to the process area, the open space along the fence line near 74E.
4) Cut limbs and carry green branches to the shredder area. Take dead branches to pick up truck for the slash pile.
5) Sort the trunks into two piles and cut according to specifications:
a) buck – 10 feet and rail – 6 feet (is this correct Steve?)
b) fire wood – 4 feet.

Jobs
1) Chain saw operators
a) Judd and a GVM staff person will cut the trees
b) One or more persons to cut the trunks into buck and rails and fire wood (if there is no one to do this, it can be done later)
2) Transporters and sorters move trees to process area and then cut branches to shredder or slash pile truck
3) Branch cutters use long-handled nippers to remove the branches
4) Shredders feed green branches into shredder.

Equipment
1) Gloves for everyone
2) Ear protection and safety glasses for chain saw operators and shredders
3) Long handled nippers – I have one and GVM has two.

We need about 10 volunteers for this project, from 9:00 – 11:00.
Let me know if you can help and what you would like to do, and if you have any suggestions.”

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