Greetings! It is my pleasure to share the good news that Grateful Trees and Bees now offers North Carolina landowners a full array of Forestry Consulting Services. In April 2014, I realized a life long goal, becoming a North Carolina Registered Forester. I am excited at the opportunity to engage the Grateful Trees and Bees philosophy in the area of forest management.
While obtaining my professional forester’s license is a recent event, I have been involved in forest stewardship and timber sales since childhood. I can still see my father in his fur hat, steam rising with every breath, using a 4 foot sapling to measure the cords of wood from a winter swamp harvest. With a small scrap of paper and a pencil he calculated the yield, then paid the loggers.
Winter was the only time we could thin this tender site, as the harsh Maine freeze turned the swampland to ice. The ice cover offered sure footing to the team of local oxen working the harvest. Dad looked after the land’s best interest first and he taught me that every forest requires a unique prescription. It’s from him I learned that we can manage a land for its resources, but only if we are willing to be in relationship with the land.
I watched too as a child how my father used the timber he harvested. Some of the wood would go to mill where it would be transformed into a multitude of wood products. I liked to think about my farm’s trees becoming furniture, plywood, pulpwood for use in paper production and saw logs. The less desirable wood became our firewood, used to fuel the old farmhouse’s eight fireplaces and wood stoves.
As a grown-up my boots walked many miles in the service of my passion. I received formal forestry training at the University of Maine in Orono, earning my Bachelor of Science and gaining experience with timber cruising, data collection and timber harvesting. Post-graduation I accepted a position over 800 miles from the Maine acreage I’d called home, signing on as the Orange County Ranger with the North Carolina Forest Service. The work offered me a vector to practice forestry, while helping landowners make sound, sustainable decisions on the management of their lands. Over the next 10 years I cut my teeth in Southern forestry, learning the cycles, patterns and protocols of Southern pine management; how to maintain forest legacy through management of upland hardwoods; and best management practices for preserving site and water quality throughout any active prescription.
The intention of Grateful Trees and Bees is to promote a production based, utilitarian lifestyle that maintains a balance between human and environmental needs. Our work and impact to date has been within the urban sector where human populations often outnumber trees and management is prescribed on a tree by tree basis. With the launching of Grateful Trees and Bees Consulting Forestry Services we’re thrilled to be taking it to the woods!
Jacob Pressley, Owner
Grateful Trees & Bees