Saturday, December 17, 2011

Next year, harvest your tree at the Davis Mountains Preserve!

Superintendent of Fort Davis National Historic Site, John Morlock, stands in front of a Christmas tree harvested during Davis Mountains Preserve's Christmas Tree Hunt.  The tree stands in the Commanding Officers Quarters at the Fort and is decorated in the style as it would have been during the time the fort was active.  Photo:  Chris Pipes

227 Pounds of Food Donated and more than 100 Trees Cut at The Nature Conservancy’s 12th Annual Christmas Tree Hunt & Food Drive in the Davis Mountains

We received the following from the Nature Conservancy's Davis Mountains Preserve:

Members of the public were invited to bring handsaws, gloves and rope to join The Nature Conservancy on Saturday, December 3rd, and Saturday, December 10th, for the 12th Annual Christmas Tree Hunt at the Davis Mountains Preserve. There was no charge for this popular 'cut-your-own Christmas tree event, which ran from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on both days. Canned goods and donations were accepted for the Food Pantry of Jeff Davis County.

Participants were allowed to select trees from predetermined areas along the Madera Creek watershed where ponderosa pine, piñon pine and alligator juniper commonly occur.. Hikers were also welcomed to enjoy the preserve on these two open days. A total of 330 people visited the preserve and generously donated approximately 227 pounds of food and money for the Food Pantry.  Davis Mountains Project Director Chris Pipes estimated that 130 trees were harvested.

“Regular tree thinning is essential for severe wildfire prevention and for maintaining a healthy ecosystem in the Davis Mountains,” said Pipes. “By cutting their own trees, visitors are actually helping The Nature Conservancy manage this iconic West Texas landscape.”

Overseeing the event was Conservancy Preserve Technician Greg Crow, who was assisted by volunteers Heather Ainsworth-Dobbins, Gary Freeman, Pam Gaddis, Steve Kennedy, Van Robinson, and Liz Stanford, all of whom contributed its success.

To learn more about the Davis Mountains Preserve and other Texas lands the Conservancy works to protect, visit

To visit Fort Davis National Historic Site, click here.

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