Declan’s Experience Clearing Land for the Kent Land Trust

Last week, I volunteered with the Kent Land Trust in Kent, Connecticut.  The Kent Land Trust owns a couple hundred acres they have been working to clear of invasive species for the past six years.  This year they only have 60 more acres to clear and they hope that this project will end before the new year.  Over the winter they had hired a contractor to go in with a brush hog and clear the big open areas, but he was unable to get up around tree trees and the bigger rocks.  It was in these areas that we were working to clear by hand.  I was one of probably 15 volunteers there that day.  We all arrived, heard the back story I relayed above, ate a muffin, and then we headed out into the woods with our tools to work (I brought loppers and a “swedish axe”).  The next few hours of service were weird in that had only one, short conversation the whole time, the rest of the time it was silent (except for the buzzing of chainsaws) work.  I started out going around to a bunch of different trees and ridding them of vines and little weeds around the base.  Eventually I found one area and started to work solely there.  In that area, I was working on a tree when one cut led to a specific type of plant with thorns whipping around and hitting me in the face.  After that I spent my time attacking that specific type of plant.  Luckily it was one of the more invasive species there, so my targeting led to a lot of land getting cleared.

– Declan

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