As spring is roaring into place, I am remembering all of those projects that were put on hold with winters arrival. Many of those projects are outdoors and involve bettering our immediate environment. Since purchasing our 10 acre homestead, we have removed the overgrown Christmas trees that were abandoned years ago and rejuvenated the fields. We have cleared roughly an acre of poplar, ash and beech that had taken over the front field. The tree lines have been thinned and the branches elevated. And the work continues.
A term that has entered our lexicon in recent times is Land Enhancement. I'm not sure if he coined the phrase, but a good friend, Will Russell used the term to describe his company Chippers. Chippers has grown to be regional company with it's focus on Land Enhancement. Land Enhancement might best be described as actions which improve the health and aesthetic of any given land component. This can include pruning, selective cutting of trees and shrubs, fertilizing, mowing and perhaps reshaping the contours. There are many companies such as Chippers that specialize in this work. Short of hiring a company to assess your properties needs, educating oneself of what is possible is prudent and great fun.
New owners of Vermont properties that have acreage have a unique opportunity to learn and engage in it's maintenance and it's proper stewardship. One of the best starting points would be to get familiar with Northern Woodlands magazine. Both the print version and their website is a huge resource for getting familiar with your land. I would also recommend a publication they produced titled, "The Place You Call Home: A Guide to Caring for Your Land in Vermont". This may be purchased in print or viewed as a pdf file on their website. The title pretty well sums up the excellent content.
However, you engage in Land Enhancement, the rewards are most beneficial for the land, your enjoyment of your property and in no small part the value. Stewardship at it's best.
Posted by Wade I. Treadway