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County completes jack pine seeding

Crow Wing County Land Services has completed a jack pine planting project on 63 acres in Mission Township.

In partnership with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, this planting project was conducted via aerial seeding done by helicopter - a first of its kind project in Crow Wing County. Funding for the project was provided by a Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council grant and county-managed forestland revenue.

"Jack pine has been decreasing on the landscape for decades and heavy deer browse is a serious challenge to the regeneration," stated Mark Liedl, Land Services director, in a news release. "We are always looking at new technology and forest management methods to re-introduce jack pine on sites where it grows best."

The aerial seeding method is expected to be more effective than traditional tree planting methods at regenerating jack pine. The process results in the establishment of new seedlings at a much higher rate per acre as compared to planting seedlings. Aerial seeding has proved to be a very efficient and cost-saving practice to regenerate forests.

Prior to seeding, the site was mechanically treated with a disk trencher and anchor chain to scarify the ground to prepare the seedbed for successful germination.

Crow Wing County land services manages 105,000 acres of forest land for timber production and diverse recreational opportunities for multiple users. The sale of timber at public auctions during the year funds the county's management of these lands, while providing revenues to local communities. County forest lands are managed to strict environmental standards established by both the Sustainable Forestry Initiative and the Forest Stewardship Council certification standards.