In an effort to improve the health of our forests and create a model for environmental stewardship, Macphail Woods is launching the Restore an Acre initiative. All donations will be used in the restoration of a 220-acre Public Forest on the Selkirk Road (Route #23) in Valley, part of the 2,000 acres we are managing for the provincial government.
These side-by-side properties have similar histories and are being managed as one large block. The land runs westerly from the Selkirk Road in Queens County, an area that has many remnant stands of our native Acadian forest. Like most woodlands in Prince Edward Island, this forest is a patchwork of stand types with a mixture of origins. Some of the land was once farmed, with a large area of previously-cleared land along the Selkirk Road. Towards the western end, a block of unploughed woodland contains large yellow birch, sugar maple and hemlock.
The formerly-agricultural land for the most part has grown up in white spruce, or been planted in blocks of white spruce, black spruce, white pine, red pine, Scots pine, eastern larch and some non-native firs. The plantations were established from 1972 to 2005. Most of these areas have low biological diversity.
The unploughed land has a diversity of stand types, with a large block dominated by eastern hemlock, another with some extremely large yellow birch, and areas of almost pure beech.There are also younger mixed stands and areas where the fir is dying out due to being attacked by balsam woolly adelgids (Adelges piceae).
The land is slightly rolling and well-drained for the most part and is capable of growing very high quality trees. There is an extensive riparian area within the property, which include several abandoned beaver impoundments and one poorly-drained area that has some of the highest biological diversity on the site. Access is good throughout the property due to the extensive road system already in place, though these need to be maintained.
Fungi, mosses & lichens