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PRESCRIBED FIRE

Safe, natural, effective.

Prescribed fire is a more effective invasive management tool and is more environmentally sound than chemical treatment. 


Our service reduces undesirable plant communities and allows native plant species to out-compete invasives naturally, providing a balanced habitat structure. ​

Prescribed fire is safer and more efficient with the right expertise and equipment.  Our services include fire line construction, assistance with implementation of prescribed fires, providing qualified burn bosses and fire fighters.  We are equipped with a 100-gallon capacity Type 7 engine 35-gallon capacity wet UTV. 

Allowing fire to work its natural processes can enhance grasslands tremendously providing many benefits such as:

  • Reducing invasive plant and woody stem encroachment
    • Soil warming to increase microbial activity and the release of nutrients from decaying plant material

    • Thatch reduction to maximize brood-rearing structure

    • Nutrient-rich forage for livestock and game species

    • Native and fire dependant species diversity

    • Enhanced habitat structure for wild game species such as deer and turkeys 

    • Vigorous wildflower growth and diversity-supporting pollinator species and songbirds.

    • Reduction in available fuels for unplanned wildfire


Fire is often sought after by agronomists and wildlife biologists to maintain grassland ecosystems in order to cost-efficiently maximize the productivity of a site.

Farmers throughout the mid-Atlantic region have often been pleasantly surprised with the return on investment from prescribed fire.

 
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MOWING OR BURNING?

Few things are prettier than a field of native grass or wildflowers (and few things are more inviting to native wildlife species and pollinators).   A seeded field will typically do well in its first year, but after that, the weeds will begin to creep in – the same phenomenon that happens in your yard.  What’s more, after time, woody species such as Autumn Olive can creep in and rapidly outcompete the native species and detract from your property’s appearance. 

The best way to deal with weeds and invasives in larger plots of land is not mowing.  Mowing cuts back the weeds, but it doesn’t kill them.  In fact, it often results in a thick buildup of matting called thatch that can mean less sunlight gets to the ground so that neither seeds nor rhizomes can sprout.


Instead of mowing, consider prescribed burning.  Burning means the native species will thrive, while annual weeds are suppressed.  When you burn, you’re replicating the kinds of burns that occurred naturally or were used by Native Americans for thousands of years.  Through burning, you can actually double the biomass of native grasses.  Additionally, even though you may have to cut back the woody stems of larger species after burning, fire typically will kill them.

Land burnt properly, with judicious planning and at the right time, works hand in hand with Mother Nature and encourages growth that is both beautiful to see and perfect habitat for wildlife.  The results of prescribed burning are longer-lasting, and they deal with the problem at the source instead of being reactive.  A few weeks after a prescribed burn, you’ll see your land greening up spectacularly with the plants you want to see!

 
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PRESCRIBED BURNING FOR POLLINATOR SUPPORT

We all want to see more Monarch butterflies and bee species in our communities.  Not only do they provide beauty and pleasure, but also, they’re absolutely essential for the pollination of our flowering plants and our crops. 


Despite their importance, wild pollinators and bee colonies are at risk.  Invasive plants, the widespread use of pesticides, and other factors have contributed to their decline.  

Good land management, including prescribed burning, can help turn this around.  Research has shown that prescribed burns stimulate germination and accelerate the growth of native plants that provide food sources for pollinators.  Studies have even found that there were 2.3 times more bees in recently burned forest sites than in unburned sites, along with more flowering plants. 

And as you might expect, when the flowers and bees are plenty, so are the songbirds and other wildlife.  

Prescribed burns are a powerful tool for land managers to increase the beauty of the land and to ensure a healthy ecosystem for all.