Once upon a time the land that we call home was part of the majestic coastal redwood forest. Acres of towering trees, from tall ridge tops down to the edges of the Pacific Ocean, marched across the landscape as far as the eye could see. Walk today in the whispery quiet of a redwood grove and one can almost imagine, almost, the scope of these ancient forests. Redwoods still grow in this west county corner, in pockets and in faerie rings, in the steep moist canyons, along creek banks, casting their mighty shade. We have planted thousands of sapling trees over the years and some have made it through the droughts, survived deer nibbling and wood rat pruning, they grow slowly but steadily and will hopefully someday rise into the sky, certainly not in our lifetime, but someday. The forest of our current landscape is a struggling one, primarily tan oaks, once mighty but now sickly and dying. Sudden Oak Death, (SOD) has lay claim to countless oaks and sadly, seems to take down the oldest and tallest first. We bare witness to a fire recovery forest, our property being part of a wild fire in 1978, 12,000 acres burned, the largest in Sonoma county history. Blackened redwood stumps over 15 feet in diameter dot the ridges and hillsides, monuments to their history. Nature is indomitable, or so we hope, and life finds a way. Perhaps the dying tan oaks will be fodder or nursery to the next dominant forest, redwoods? In the meantime, we will continue to do our part, speeding things along, planting more saplings with visions of a healthy future forest.
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