2,000 black-walnut seedlings planted for Florence’s certified, city-owned tree farm

ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DON RATZLAFF
A team of eight to 12 amateur and professional foresters planted some 2,000 black walnut seedlings in Florence’s city-owned, certified tree farm along the banks of the Cottonwood River on Friday and Saturday. In the top photo, workers are dwarfed by the size of the main planting area just off of U.S. Highway 50. From left are Leonard Ellis, project director, Dale Miller, a local volunteer, and Bob Atchison and Dave Bruton of the Kansas Forestry Service. Ellis himself is a 42-year veteran of the KFS, now retired. Once the crop of trees grows tall enough that the branches create canopy closure, the grove will be thinned so the trees can grow taller and fuller. A well-tended grove can produce harvestable trees within 30 to 35 years, Ellis said.

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