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“If the land mechanism as a whole is good, then every part is good, whether we understand it or not. If the biota, in the course of eons, has built something we like but do not understand, then who but a fool would discard seemingly useless parts? To keep every cog and wheel is the first precaution of intelligent tinkering.”
There has been a long history of forest degradation in Prince Edward Island. Most of our woodlands have gone through a cycle of land clearing for agriculture, a century or more of farming, then after the land was abandoned it grew up in plants and eventually became what we think of as a forest. But though the stands of old field white spruce or other early successional species arose from natural means, they are not examples of healthy forests.
The soil structure and nutrients are different than what would be found in a healthy forest, and the plants reflect the nearby seed sources whose offspring could grow in a dry, often windy field in full sun. Yet these areas are still capable of developing into healthy forests.
The purpose of these publications is to help facilitate the reintroduction of some of our rarest native plants.