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From: Aref Khatib
Scales Mound, IL
We have 159 acre hardwood tree farm. We planted 120,000 trees in the 35 years. The first planting was rows of walnut, pine and cherry which has about 400 trees per acre and we killed 200 trees per acre to allow the good trees to grow better, however we have not removed the killed trees. The second planting which was about 30 years ago is growing much faster because we planted every other tree a different species. The third planting was lower by our creek and was about 25 years ago and still needs time for the trees to grow. Before planting any of the 120,000 trees we already had one quarter of the farm in natural trees which is now ready for harvesting. My question is what is the best way to earn a living on the farm if I made this a full time job from now on? There are many trees that are over a hundred years old that need to be harvested which is about 40 trees of Oak, Black Walnut and other species. Is it important for me to mow between these trees to make paths before going to the next step to harvest them? One tree in particular is an oak tree which was hit by a storm and literally broke in half around 30 feet from the ground and I do not want to lose anything in its value. What is your advice about making this into a real income making business?

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