“I think that I shall never see a poem lovely as a tree.” Most of us learned this poem as children, and as we’ve grown older, the truth of it has become more apparent. That’s why it’s important to think carefully before you begin clearing land and felling trees on and around your construction site. It takes decades, maybe centuries, for some trees to mature, but it takes only minutes for them to be destroyed.

If you are fortunate enough to have wooded property, take time to assess the types and health of the trees growing there. Which trees will provide shade from broiling summer heat or block a frosty winter wind? Which turn brilliant colors in fall, painting your surrounding landscape? Are there trees that provide habitats for songbirds or produce nuts or edible fruits or flowers? Do hardwoods grow that can be cut for craft or construction projects or even sold for revenue?

In most states, the division of forestry provides free information and even onsite assistance for determining which trees can be beneficial and which should be cut. Diseased trees as well as those not indigenous to the region should be removed. Even then, those could be cut and saved for firewood to burn in that magnificent stone fireplace in the new home. 

Marking trees for saving, cutting or dozing as part of a master plan that is well designed and initiated long before construction begins can make a huge difference in the beauty, value and livability of your home.

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Trees are an integral part of the Wilson’s 20-acre homesite, which includes ponds, trails and several outdoor living areas. For more about this property, visit www.honestabe.com/project/wilson/

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Exterior, horizontal, overall rear 3/4 view at twilight, Joyce residence, Bracey, Virginia; Honest Abe Log Homes

Exterior, horizontal, overall rear 3/4 view at twilight, Joyce residence, Bracey, Virginia; Honest Abe Log Homes

The Joyce family’s strategic selection of trees created a new home in the woods that appeared to have existed for decades. For floor plans and more photos, visit www.honestabe.com/photos/dovetail-d-log-homes/joyce-residence-custom