FORESTRY

Gorgeous Goat Creamery is located on 17 acres which is largely hardwood forest. The forest includes white oak, red oak, red maple, sugar maple, shag bark hickory, and ash.  Throughout our area, the emerald ash borer, an invasive and aggressive beetle, has been feasting on the ash trees. The emerald ash borer damages the trees so severely, it causes the trees to lose their leaves and die. Hardwood forests, like ours, are experiencing significant tree turnover which jeopardizes the health of the forest. We are committed to regenerating the forest for future generations and for the health of the New Jersey environment.

Damage under the bark from emerald ash borer

 

Since 2017, we planted over 200 tree seedlings in a protected nursery. This allows the seedlings to grow big enough so the deer won’t eat them in the forest. During the spring, summer and fall, we nurture the seedlings by weeding them every few weeks and watering them when the rain subsides.  We use catchment water collected from our building roofs and drip irrigation to maximize water conservation. After 2-3 seasons, the seedlings are ready to move to their permanent home in the forest.

Firewood, a valuable forest resource

As the ash trees die, the tree canopy opens up, allowing sunlight to reach the forest floor.  This allows small trees to access more sunlight, but it also supports the growth of invasive species such as multiflora rose and barberry.  Our goats are the primary forces against invasive species growth. Goats love to eat multiflora rose, barberry, and stilt grass. From April through October, the goats spend all day in the forest munching on the invasive species. It naturally fills their bellies with nutritious food and supports our sustainable forest management plan. Our environmentally conscious approach to forest management benefits the forest, our goats and us!

 

We utilize forest products on our property to heat our house, provide shelter for our animals, and for our market displays. Our custom milled wood and firewood are available locally in Hunterdon County, New Jersey as special order products.  Contact us directly if you are interested.

Matt's entire display is made from ash wood