Cook Forest hosts three tree saving programs

The book Twilight of the Hemlocks and Beeches by Tim Palmer gives insight into the hemlock and beech trees that have for millennia towered over America’s eastern woodlands.

Cook Forest hosts three tree saving programs

COOKSBURG Cook Forest State Park will host three events this September with the goal of keeping its virgin, old-growth hemlock forests healthy in spite of the threat posed by the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid, a tiny invasive insect that has already destroyed much of the forests of the Shendoah and Great Smoky Mountains.

The following is a list of the upcoming events:

47 p.m., Sept. 15, at the Cook Forest Sawmill Center for the Arts. Admission is $15, ticket sales to benefit efforts to combat HWA in Cook Forest. For tickets, please call (814) 927-6655.

Watch a beautiful documentary by Wild Excellence Films, Cathedral: The Fight to Save the Ancient Hemlocks of Cook Forest, which tells the story of the effort to save the park's ancient hemlocks, and why they must be saved.

"These magnificent trees are hundreds of years old, and we have to do everything we can to help save them," said Melissa Rohm, filmmaker on the project.

Cathedral includes interviews with park staff, and Old-Growth Forest Network founder Joan Maloof narrates as viewers are taken through the forest in all seasons.

410 a.m., Sept. 16, at Pavilion No. 2 in Cook Forest State Park, off Forest Road. This event is free. Coffee and pastries will be served. Please R.S.V.P. to kelly@cookforestconservancy.org.

The following morning, join the Cook Forest Conservancy for breakfast alongside Tom's Run while enjoying a slideshow by acclaimed author Tim Palmer, based Twilight of the Hemlocks and Beeches, released this month by Penn State University Press.

Twilight of the Hemlocks and Beeches shows the irreplaceable beauty of the magnificent Eastern Hemlock and American Beech trees, and explains the invasion of exotic insects and pathogens that are tragically decimating one of the most beloved forest types in eastern America.

"Tim Palmer's breathtaking photography perfectly captures the magic of Pennsylvania's state tree," said state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn, and "will inspire us all to work on building resilience for adaptation to the impacts of climate change and to do what we can to save these majestic trees."

45:30 p.m., Sept. 26, at Pavilion No. 1 in Cook Forest State Park, off Forest Road. This event is free, but attendees must R.S.V.P. to kelly@cookforestconservancy.org for further details.

Finally, actually protect the trees surrounding Cook Forest's Shelter No.1, and learn how you can easily and inexpensively prevent HWA from harming your own trees.

The evening of Wednesday, Sept. 26, join specialists from the Bureau of Forestry for a practical field seminar. We'll cover some background information on HWA and then the different treatment methods, chemical and insect; which is best for a given situation; and the best seasons for treatments.

Then attendees can watch the mixing of imidacloprid, become familiar with the application machinery, and actually apply the treatment this single injection will protect these hemlocks for seven years, at much less cost and expense than removing trees killed by HWA.

About Cook Forest Conservancy

It is a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting and improving the lands, waters, and wildlife of the Cook Forest State Park area, and is working in concert with the Pennsylvania DCNR Bureau of Forestry, Cook Forest State Park, Wild Excellence Films, and the Friends of Cook Forest to this end.

For more information, visit their website at http://www.cookforestconservancy.org or contact Kelly Culbertson at kelly@cookforestconservancy.org