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Howard Nursery Offers Guidance to Landowners Seeking to Improve Wildlife Habitat
Feb 12, 2008 (10:02 AM EST)


HARRISBURG, Pa., Feb. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Landowners seeking to plant trees beneficial to wildlife are encouraged to begin making plans now. For guidance, as well as placing orders for seedlings, landowners are encouraged to visit the Pennsylvania Game Commission's website ( http://www.pgc.state.pa.us ), click on the "Forms and Programs" section and choose "Howard Nursery Seedling Program."

The Game Commission's Howard Nursery produces bare-root seedlings for wildlife food and cover on State Game Lands. The nursery has been producing and distributing 2.7 to 6 million seedlings annually for wildlife food and cover since 1954. Landowners who have land open to public hunting and are enrolled in one of the Commission's public access programs are eligible to receive up to 500 free seedlings annually, as available. Those enrolled cooperators with more than 500 acres are eligible for one free seedling per acre enrolled up to a maximum of 10,000 seedlings annually, as available. Cooperators are provided an order form each fall for following spring delivery. Free seedling orders are only taken in the fall through local Wildlife Conservation Officers (WCOs) and Land Management Group Supervisors (LMGS). Those re-signing in these programs this winter will have one more opportunity to order thru their local WCO/LMGS.

All Pennsylvania landowners may purchase seedlings for wildlife food and cover, watershed protection, soil erosion control, and for reclamation of disturbed areas, such as surface mine site and utility right-of-ways.

"The goal of the Howard Nursery is to provide the finest tree seedlings available of those species that best provide for the various needs of wildlife, including food and shelter," said Cliff Guindon, Howard Nursery superintendent. "All of our stock is inspected annually by the state Department of Agriculture and certified to be disease-free."

Guindon noted that the nursery provides landowners the ability to purchase seedlings for 15 to 50 cents each in bundles of 25 (plus sales tax). The following species remain available for this spring: Eastern white pine; mugo pine; red pine; Norway spruce; white spruce; Colorado blue spruce; arborvitae (northern white cedar); silky dogwood; black locust; Northern red oak; pin oak; Chinese chestnut; buttonbush; American sweet crabapple; assorted crabapple; Washington Hawthorne; American mountain ash; common elderberry; common alder; and trembling aspen.

A description of each, along with size information, is available on the website. Some of the new native shrubs are available in limited quantities and are expected to sell out quickly. The selection of native trees and shrubs is being expanded annually. With the exception of black locust, all of our hardwoods are grown from seed collected and processed by Game Commission personnel from Pennsylvania sources.

In addition to making arrangements for landowners to pick up their seedling orders, the nursery does ship via United Parcel Service (UPS). Shipping and handling charges do apply. This is very efficient and most orders are received next day. Orders are only shipped Monday thru Wednesday to assure delivery for weekend planting.

"Due to conditions beyond our control, such as ice and snow, wet weather, frozen ground, we may not be able to ship trees as early as we would like," Guindon said. "We will do everything we can do at the nursery to ensure timely shipping and arrival of trees." Generally seedlings ship in the month of April.

Note to Editors: If you would like to receive Game Commission news releases via e-mail, please send a note with your name, address, telephone number and the name of the organization you represent to: PGCNews@state.pa.us

CONTACT: Jerry Feaser, +1-717-705-6541

CONTACT: Jerry Feaser of the Pennsylvania Game Commission, PGCNEWS@state.pa.us+1-717-705-6541,

Web site: http://www.pgc.state.pa.us/