It's Amazing how fast nature returns
54 More Acres Protected in the Mitchell River Watershed
Out in the rolling hills of Surry County, more land has been protected along the south fork of the Mitchell River. When Suzie and Dick Everhart first bought these 54 acres in 1989, the land was mostly barren with poor soil and invasive plants. It’s hard to imagine that scene today.
“This whole area was tobacco. It’s amazing how fast nature returns. The soils are rebuilding. The diversity is increasing, and we just want that to continue.”
When you walk the land today, it’s come a long way. A long golden ribbon of native yellow ironweed (sometimes called wingstem) carpets their open spaces this August. Tall river birches, sycamores, and tulip trees line the creek. A wetland full of Cardinal flowers and swamp milkweed pulses with the sounds of insects and frogs.
The transformation of plant life has created a transformation for wildlife. The Everharts have seen gray squirrels, fox squirrels, and even flying squirrels come back to the area. The land is now home to many kinds of salamanders, turtles, and beavers.
The land only needed a little help. They had their goats eat back the dense thickets of invasive multiflora rose and they did some work themselves to control the spread of other invasive plants that were overtaking but otherwise, they let nature do its thing. Thirty years on, the land is totally transformed.
In August of 2023, the Everharts donated a 54 acre conservation easement to Piedmont Land Conservancy, meaning that this land will never be developed or subdivided. Their connection to the land and their profound respect for all the progress they’ve witnessed motivated them to donate the easement.
In Dick’s words, “We’ve taken from this land for centuries. Here’s an opportunity to return some of what we’ve taken. We can return the soil, return the water, and bring back the habitat.”
More Posts from Piedmont Land Conservancy
At 1,865 feet, Wells Knob is one of the highest features in Wilkes County before the rise of the Blue Ridge Mountains begins five miles to the west…
Plan your visit to Winston-Salem’s newest public trail, the Stuart & Emma Thomas Memorial Trail, nestled in the heart of downtown at Crossnore Communities for Children…
Water is necessary for the survival of all living beings on earth which is why it is so essential to protect. Each small stream matters…
Consider giving to
Piedmont Land Conservancy
to protect more special places like the Mitchell River Watershed.