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GRCC Natural Resources and DNR Work to Restore Campus Forest

GRCC Natural Resources and the Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) have been working together to restore the forest here on campus.

If you walk out on any of the 5 miles of trails and look up, you will see many dead and dying trees. These trees are dying from a root rot fungus that targets Douglas-fir trees. In these areas light is now able to get to the forest floor but with all of the organic debris, no seedlings are able to grow back, so brush along with invasive species has grown in. We brought an excavator in and cleared brush from 5 acres along the paved multi-purpose trail.

Under direction of the Forest Manager, students and faculty planted 2100 native Sitka spruce and western redcedar seedlings. The logs visible along the trail were NOT cut down, these are trees that have died from this fungus and had fallen over in wind storms over the past decades. These logs are being cut up by students in the Forestry Club and the GRCC Student Chapter of the Society of American Foresters (SAF) and sold to customers for firewood. The revenue will pay for student attendance at the SAF national convention in Spokane this fall.