“No matter the deviation, all things come full circle. You begin and end your journey in the same place, but with a different set of eyes.” — From “Seers of Light” by Jennifer DeLucy
This past week I experienced one of those “come full circle” moments. This particular circle began in 1999, a time of major and unexpected changes in my life. As I assessed my situation and considered my future I realized that the wooded part of my farm had potential for financial reward as well as emotional comfort.
Then I saw an announcement for a day-long educational program sponsored by the Newberry County Forestry Association. On an impulse I registered and went, taking the very first step toward becoming a tree farmer. Unbelievably, 14 years later I have received a call inviting me to present a session at this year’s Forest Focus, giving my perspective as the S.C. Tree Farmer of the Year. The event is even being held in the same building as before, closing the circle.
This 15th biennial program will be held Saturday, Feb. 23, 2013, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Newberry National Guard Armory. My topic will be non-traditional tree farming. Others to be presented include forest certification, pine bark beetles, using new technology, hunting leases and liability, feral hog and coyote management, planting for wildlife, best management practices, herbicides and timber taxes.
There will be a catered lunch and breaks so that attendees can visit exhibitor booths and interact with forest industry professionals and each other. If you have ever thought about becoming a tree farmer this would be an excellent introduction, and is a bargain with a registration fee of only $5. Space will be limited, so contact Jeff Fellers at 864-427-6259, ext. 115 to pre-register and secure your spot. I hope to see many of you there.
— Joanna Angle is a Master Tree Farmer and 2012 South Carolina Tree Farmer of the Year. Her Cedarleaf Farm in Chester County is a Certified Stewardship Forest and part of the American Tree Farm System.