Saturday, August 18, 2007

The Ridge News

Several years ago, like back around 1995 or so Billy got some American Chestnut seedlings from someone who told him about the blight that took out whole forests of Chestnut trees back in the 1940s. So he planted the seedings along the little valley that our creek runs along and sort of forgot about them. Well earlier this year he and his brother Rob noticed that there were some Chestnut hulls laying around under a tree and yesterday we looked for it again. What we found is a really tall American Chestnut tree that is in fruit - has lots of these spiney balls on it that hold the nuts.
Unfortunately, when I went back to take pictures I found out that the tree seems to be in distress by the blight too. I really don't know what the Chestnut blight looks like, I looked on line, but all I found so far was pictures of healthy trees. This is the base of the tree and those cracks go up the trunk pretty much as far as I could see. Doesn't look good for the tree.

I sent an email to the WVU contact of the American Chestnut Foundation telling him what we found and we will see if he has anything to say about it. We wouldn't mind being part of the test for a blight free seedling to try. Since the trees like our soil we could try some more, long as they don't fall down and hurt the cows anyway.

In other Ridge news, Billy's nephew and neice built a house a few years ago and now they have just finished building the garage. The next project is cleaning up in front of the garage so they can use it. Eric rented an excavator to dig out some stumps that didn't come out when they cleared the space earlier. In this picture Billy is running the excavator and Eric is moving dirt with the tractor. That hole to the left was a big stump.

Emily spent some time rearranging dirt too. Jake spent time laying in the cool dirt hoping he didn't get buried or jumped on.
Lauren and her mom Jessica sat on the swing and watched. You can see brother Rob's house on the left side of Lauren's head and our roofline on the right side behind Jessica's head. That is just the right distance, far enough for privacy, but close enough for these group projects.

That is all for now. Later!

1 comment:

  1. I'd like to know what you find out about the chestnut tree!