Permaculture forum: Dead trees

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Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Sep 23, 2015 12:04 PM CST
I am torn on deciding what to do with a few small dead native trees. Trying to take into account all of the pros and cons. I live in an oak/hickory forest area with an understory of small natives trees - serviceberry, "wild cherry", etc. Army Corp of Engineers decided years ago to create a wetlands running alongside a large creek behind my property. Consequently, the oaks and hickories beyond my property are dying off because of too much standing water. Do I leave the few dead trees on my property standing to benefit the wild bird population (including 3 types of woodpeckers) or do I use them in hugel beds as a form of carbon sequestration?

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hazelnut
Sep 27, 2015 11:19 AM CST
A quandary or a conundrum. Do the woodpeckers really appreciate dead trees?
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Sep 27, 2015 2:33 PM CST
It was my understanding that woodpeckers are interested in the insects in dead or dying trees.
springfield MO area (Zone 6a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Plant Identifier
Frillylily
Sep 27, 2015 2:44 PM CST
The dead trees in my yard were infested w termites. We cut them up, burned them and the had the stumps ground out. We have termites in our house! We have had lots of damage to the stud walls and subfloors.
Name: Kristi
east Texas pineywoods (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
pod
Sep 27, 2015 4:51 PM CST
The woodpeckers will peel the bark back in search of bugs. If the habitat is correct, some woodpeckers will nest in dead trees as well, so yes, it can be habitat for them.

I'd say it would depend on your environment. I am in the deep woods and when we had our timber select cut, we left the tops, trash and dead trees to rot down. Over time we found it provided cover for much wildlife and improved the soil as it rotted. On the other hand, if I didn't have a lot of acreage, I'd probably clean it up so I wouldn't have to look at it.

Rereading your original post makes me think I'd remove the dead timber from my property as you mentioned
the oaks and hickories beyond my property are dying off
so there is ample habitat for the wildlife near by.

I would opt for hugelkultur beds.
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Sep 27, 2015 5:12 PM CST
I was kinda leaning that way but wanted to make sure all of the native creatures were taken care of.
I appreciate all of the input.

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