Using the plan, Behrends first hired Fond du Lac Forestry to do select clearing around full-grown seed trees of desirable species on 11 acres of his aspen forest. The ground in these cleared areas was then scratched up to expose soil for acorns and other seeds for good germination, explained Smith. "Over the next five years, we expect to see about 1,000 seedlings per acre of oak, birch, and pine in these gaps," Smith said, adding that these openings will also grow flowers and plants to attract pollinators and other wildlife. Behrends' "little bits" of hard work will pay off in several ways: by improving the health and value of his timber, by providing more wildlife habitat and by helping to create healthier forests to improve water quality.
Over the years, Schantz set up a small nursery, planted a Christmas tree plantation, created a wildlife pond, and established several gardens of vegetables, fruits and berries. After Schantz passed away in 2009, Schantz-Hansen continued to maintain and expand the gardens, projects, and trails. She also graciously allowed community members and groups to use the trails for winter skiing and encouraged people to come and learn how to grow blueberries and turn apples into wonderful cider, etc..
Time to settle down some? Nope! We Finns are still celebrating!
p>A few weeks ago, this newspaper ran a front page cover that said, "Imagine a day without local news." Along that same line, can you imagine what our lives would be like without clean water? How would you handle having dirty, polluted water to drink, to cook with, to wash bodies and clothes in? All over the world billions of people live without clean water. While most of these people are in third world countries, some are in the United States, too, especially in situations when hurricanes, floods or accidents contaminate rivers, lakes and groundwater which are the main sources of drinking water.
Are you interested in learning or practicing your Finnish speaking skills? Every Thursday, Finns and friends get together in Embarrass at the Nelimark Farm from 1-3 p.m. for a conversational Finn class activity. Consider joining them! The Hibbing Finnish Americans and Friends group meet at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 5, at the Tourist Center Senior Citizens building on East Howard Street.
So, what can we, as individuals, do to help our important pollinators? Almost all of us can work on creating "pollinator habitat of native flowers, grasses, shrubs, and trees," Smith said, adding that such habitats "can be a beautiful and fun project that really helps the environment." Creating pollinator habitat can also add value to your property and get your whole family outside, working together and enjoying and learning more about our fascinating world! <
BEE BASICS In North America, there are about 4,000 species of native bees with about 45 species of bumblebees in the United States alone. Most of us recognize bumblebees, but there are other native species such as the long-horned bees, carpenter bees, mining (or plasterer) bees, small dark bees, green sweat bees, leafcutter bees, mason bees, cuckoo bees, etc.
I hear all the time about "keeping our Finnish heritage alive" and "passing our Finnish heritage to our children and grandchildren," but when wonderful opportunities come along, where are the people to do the work, to attend, and to bring their families and friends? If we don't support and attend these events and opportunities, the different groups will quit bringing them.
There are going to be more exciting Finland 100 events coming throughout this year and I encourage you to attend and take advantage of each of them to strengthen and share your Finnish heritage and ties to Finland!
• Do not plant too close to underground services or in the road right of ways, said Mike Rust, a four-year volunteer. • Plant native trees. For instance, blue spruce aren't native to Minnesota, explained Barbara Isaacson, Master Gardener intern. They like the dryer climate and lighter soils of Colorado and other western states, and many blue spruce planted in Minnesota die out in 15-20 years from rust disease. <