Top photo: A late January sun tries to break through morning clouds.
American Tree Farm System
Wisconsin Woodland Owners Association
Although there are arguments for not doing so, we have decided to stay in the Managed Forest Law Program. Our new plan for the next 25 years was completed in 2011 and can be viewed here.
At the Farm gallery
Check out a few of our favorite photos from the farm.
Our brother, Bob DeBaun, was one of the original tree farmers at our 47 acres. His passing at age 60 was much too early for a man with so much to offer. But we have lots of memories to share.
A video tribute to Bob's life is available at this link.
Savoring each season as it comes
With each new year comes the promise of new happenings. Sometimes they are expected, sometimes they are not. In 2013, we know that we are headed toward another harvest in the red pines and maybe in some of the hardwoods, too. We'll plant some trees this spring and be watching for the appearance of the first yellow ladyslippers, be busy with visitors over the summer (we hope), and be cutting firewood and planning for the deer hunt in the fall. But for now it's winter and we're hoping for a little more snowfall so we can try some of our trails for cross-country skiing. We've only attempted it once before, and just in the meadow across from the house. But with a little luck and cooperation from mother nature, we'll try harder this winter. Otherwise, we'll enjoy the views and enjoy making plans.
For the latest At the Farm report, click here.
For a complete list of all our reports, check the At the Farm Index.
A new era is launched
In 2011, for the first time in a long time, the tree farm had very few visitors, because there was no place to stay. We had a new house under construction. That changed in 2012 with the completion of the new house, and we're hoping add to the list in 2013. Below is a chronicle of progress of the house project.
Building the new house:
May 23: Getting ready for the last day
May 24: This old house comes down.
May 25: Footings for the new house
June 7-8: The floor goes down, walls go up
June 11: Framing progress continues
June 23-24: Raising the roof
July 4-6: Windows and a deck, and work for the owners
July 17-19: Getting wired, checking the trees
July 31-Aug. 2: A look into the future
Aug. 15-17 - Change in the air.
Aug. 25-26 - Progress on siding.
Aug. 29-30 - Siding is finished.
Sept. 7 - Winds of change
Sept. 13 -- Drywall progress.
Sept. 20 -- A family 'inspection'
Sept. 29-30 -- Flooring and woodwork, oh my!
Oct. 4 -- Cabinets are in
Oct. 24-25 -- At last, a fireplace
Oct. 27 -- Final decisions
Nov. 1 -- Hardwood floor gets finish coat
Nov. 8-9 -- An abrupt change in the weather
Nov. 16 -- Heating and cooling (stove and refrigerator)
Nov. 22 -- Change in plans
Nov. 25-28 -- Lots to be thankful for
Dec. 6-7 -- Moving back in picks up
Dec. 20-21 -- A winter cookout
Jan. 5-7 -- Final pieces fitting together
Recalling the early years
Less than a year after we we bought the tree farm in 1961, our dad, Burt DeBaun, was transferred to Kansas City, and a year later to Amarillo, Texas. But despite the distance, we held on to the property through the years, sometimes making just one visit per year. It was a two-day drive from Amarillo, and we would come up for a week or two and mow the place up, check on the woods and reconnect with neighbors, and then have to say good-bye for another 12 months. But it was worth it.
When the family had to get rid of the original kitchen stove that came with the house, Dad wrote a story about the first 25 years of the farm. His story is called The Cookstove.