Letters: Invasive species will thrive in forest canopy openings

To the editor:

It is rumored that the Indiana DNR Division of Forestry will soon reprise their wildlife packet tree sales program, due to the unexpected success of the first offerings from the 1970s and ‘80s. Species contained in these packets are currently available at all of our state forests, so visit your nearest state forest office soon and inquire about them!

Apparently, the focus of these truly modern silviculture efforts will be to simulate real, actual native vegetation in order to help guide and jump-start the process of natural secession from these man-made, even-aged, wildlife habitat opening opportunities.

Included in the new, improved Indiana “Wilderlife” packets are some of these old, time-tested Hoosier favorites:

1. Multiflora rose: great for fence rows and wildlife habitat. Little teeny-tiny birds eat the outer “onion skin” of the fertile rose hip, freeing gazillions of mature seeds in a complex, natural, symbiotic-type of mutually beneficial partnership relationship, I believe. This multiflora rose wildlife habitat is extremely beneficial to all armored, crawling wildlife and ruffed grouse hunters of small stature.

2. Autumn olive: great for diversity control and providing fast food. Very hardy! Grows everywhere in all planting zones. Perfect habitat in which to hang multiple ruffed grouse colony nesting boxes.

3. Amur honeysuckle. Hooray, no more expensive, labor-intensive native-forest understory eradication problems. No more dangerous chemical herbicide spraying necessary in your woods again, ever. This miracle bush exudes special all-natural ingredients that will keep those pesky native plants at bay. Just plant it, and let nature do your work for you!

If you choose the option to have your “Wilderlife” packet delivered by an official Division of Forestry vehicle, it will most likely also drop off, at no additional charge to you, a new seasonal mix of Japanese stiltgrass, Japanese knotweed and garlic mustard seeds, plus a couple of extra surprises thrown in. Inquire at state forest offices now while supplies last.


Charles Cole, Nashville

P.S. Kudos to the DNR for instituting the new river otter trapping season. These innocent-looking but completely amoral piscatine predators would have otherwise savaged or totally destroyed our burgeoning Asian carp fishery. Well played, men!

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