November 15th, 2019: OSU’s research forest staff burned the slash piles at ‘No Vacancy’. Approx. 50 piles were burned, consuming an estimated 800-1000 tons of wood, and releasing an enormous amount of carbon into our atmosphere. The Dean, OSU administration and Board of Trustees ignored requests to not burn the slash.
Forest Memorial Service (Oct. 20th, 2019): (see “Latest News” for a description of this memorable event)
Lessons from a Tree
Seed split. Root sprout. Leaf bud.
Delve deep. Hold fast. Reach far.
Sway. Lean. Bow. Loom.
Climb high. Stand tall. Last long.
Grow. Thicken. Billow. Shade. Sow seed.
Rise by pluck, child of luck,
Burn. Bleed. Heal. Remember. Testify.
Nest. Host. Guard. Honor.
Fall. Settle. Slump.
Surrender. Offer. Enrich.
Be duff. Enough.
When they consider the rings of the tree
you plant today, they will celebrate
the concentric center and say “This
is the year Greta crossed the sea.
This is the year they gathered to lament,
then turned lament to frenzy. As fire
pries open a fisted cone to scatter
seed, they made grief seed action.”
By the rings ever outward, our descendants
will trace the great change—summerwood
as the tree rises to journey through time
building bounty for all beings.
Will the great change be destruction?
Will we build a furnace out of Eden.
Will our comforts kill our children?
Shall oil burn the sky? Or can
human wisdom like a sapling
grow taller, greener, more generous?
How can we know what lies ahead?
Plant a tree, and see.
“But somehow, it becomes possible– through the terrible anesthesia of our time — to learn to look at a forest and see only commodities. It becomes possible to breathe sweet forest air and smell only diesel fuel and money. If a person develops the capacity not to see, not to hear, not to feel the ancient living forest, it becomes possible to mistake it for something far less, and think nothing – nothing – of cutting down its trees, hauling them away, bulldozing what small, stunned lives remain, and spraying poison on the wreckage.”
—Kathleen Dean Moore, (from her homily, “The Terrible Silence of the Sky”
You can read all of Kathleen Dean Moore’s powerful homily here:
Friends Hikes to “No Vacancy” and the Sulphur Springs Old Growth (Aug. 2019):
OSU’s “No Vacancy” Harvest, near Baker Creek / Road 800 (June 2019): This 15.6 acre stand was part of a larger (67-acre tract) of old-growth forest that should have been preserved decades ago, as part of OSU’s mature forest reserves. One of the logs from the recent harvest was verified to be at least 420-years old! Dozens of majestic trees that used to line the road just uphill from Baker Creek have now been lost forever. These trees were enjoyed by generations of neighbors, recreational users – and OSU forestry folks!
A smaller section of old trees (~11 acres) was harvested last year, leaving ~36 acres (54%) of the original 67 acres of contiguous Old Growth. Pictures of the remaining old-growth trees can be found further below.
Please help us protect these trees by signing our petition (click on the “Sign the Petition” heading above)!
Sulphur Springs Stand: This section of forest is located directly uphill (south) of the historic Sulphur Springs (in the Soap Creek valley, just north of Corvallis). The “origin date” for this stand is 1759, but many of the trees are believed to be considerably older. There are at least a dozen trees in the 5-7 foot diameter size, and dozens between 4 and 5 feet in diameter.
In response to an inquiry about the recent Baker Creek harvest, the OSU Forest Manager replied on May 30th, 2019: “the area to the north is also part of our future harvest program”. This description (and his accompanying map) made it clear he was describing the Sulphur Springs stand (shown below). The (Interim) Dean of the College of Forestry has subsequently put a halt on the cutting of old trees in pending harvests. He has also indicated they have no current plans to harvest these trees. We greatly appreciate the Dean’s involvement and this positive news. We will continue to push for permanent protection of this stand (and other old-growth trees and stands not currently protected in OSU’s forests).
Update: On October 21st, 2019, Dean Davis formally changed the status of the 36-acre Sulphur Springs stand to “mature forest reserve” (Old Growth), thus protecting it from future cuts. This momentous change only came about because of advocacy by our group. Thanks SO much for making this possible! To read the Dean’s letter, see our “Latest News” page.
Many other old remnant stands and old-growth trees in the OSU forests remain unprotected. Please help us protect these trees by signing our petition (see “Sign our petition!” above).