We were told to grab gloves, large cutters, and goggles. Then we headed out to the very back of the property.
The man that was leading our group told us that we were going to be cutting down buckthorn. Buckthorn is something that we learned in class already. It is an invasive species. The reason that it is especially a problem at the Grove is because the Grove's forest was predominately all oak hardwood. But because the buckthorn has grown all over the forest's floor, the seeds of the oak trees cannot fall and reproduce on the ground. The buckthorn is shading the light of the ground and the oak trees are unable to grow. Also the only importance that buckthorn provides to the animals and environment of the grove is, the deers use the tree to rub on and also get rid of their antlers when it is time.
The picture on the left is a picture of the distinctive color of the inside of buckthorn bark. It is an orangish pigment and when I cut into the tree it looked as though there was an orange circle going around the outer part of the tree.
To begin with, almost all of the forest floor was covered with the invasive tree, but at the end it looked more like the picture to your right. We made many piles of buckthorn.
These piles will be burned and the stubs remaining will be poisoned by workers at the Grove. It was a great experience and I'm glad that I was able to help out my community, i can't wait to see if the oak forest is able to grow back!