The land just behind our garden and barn belongs to a neighbor. He informed us recently that he was planning to harvest the large white pine trees from that lot. I had mixed feelings. A clear cut is always jarring especially for the animals and trees; but this cut would bring much needed sun to our barnyard in winter and would cast more sunlight on our gardens too.
As I anticipated the logging, I knew I needed to give the natural world a “heads up” if it didn’t already know that big changes were eminent. So I walked out onto the land one afternoon and spent some time letting the creatures and trees know what was coming. I felt that a hemlock tree wanted to be saved and that I should ask for it not to be cut. I walked around to try to identify a large hemlock for which I should advocate. I could not find one. There were several smaller ones but none with which I connected. As I continued to walk I came upon a mighty oak and decided to ask the land owner if I could mark that tree to save. He agreed, and I did.
The logging happened this past week and the oak was saved. To my surprise, right in the middle of the clear cut a lone hemlock tree was still standing. I suppose the hemlock communicated directly with the logger since I hadn’t followed through. I asked the owner and he said, “It was saved for the wildlife”. Hmm…I am grateful. I look forward to a long, happy relationship with this lovely hemlock tree.