End of Winter 2017-2018

The Namesake White Tree at White Tree Farm

Can it really be the 2018 Easter weekend already?

Robin and I have been out at White Tree Farm quite a bit over the past month or so. What have we found? Winter 2017-2018 was a tough one and has impacted White Tree Farm in a couple of significant ways.


Firstly, we’ve experienced a good deal of erosion of the bluff at the south end of the property. We noticed in the summer of 2017 that a piece of land about 10 feet by 60 feet had sloughed down about 6 inches in the middle of the bluff. Returning in March, we found this entire patch of land had fallen away. This was probably a result of the heavy snowfall we experienced in December and January, along with a long hard cold snap and the subsequent warm-up. This by far was the most erosion loss we have seen since we bought the property.


Secondly, we lost a number of old trees at the corners of the properties. Many have been uprooted; others split by heavy winds. We definitely have some clean-up to do.

Finally, we walked a great deal of the area that we had 5000 trees planted in spring 2016. While the softwoods (pines, cedars, spruces, etc) appear to be doing well, we initially feared that the hardwoods we planted did not make out as well. But a couple of weekends later, Robin and I made a second, more careful, walk of the area and discovered many more hardwoods taking hold. We marked these young trees with surveyor’s flags so we can monitor their progress better.

We are also preparing for our first year of gardening. Robin has been growing seeds that will later be transplanted into the new beds at the farm. I installed two rainwater harvesters in the downspouts of the workshop. Collecting water for the gardening will be important for later on the year.

I’ve also got a new way of documenting the farm: a DJI Mavic Pro Platinum drone. I want to use for a number of things, the most important is tracking the changes in the bluff at the south end of the property. But the drone also gives the opportunity to take photographs like the one above, showing the namesake birch tree facing north across the fields of out neighborhood’s farm.