The Wicopy Woods offers a rare 50-year record of forest productivity and stewardship.
In 1968, Ron and Stephanie Locke purchased a run-down farm and woodlot in Sebec, Maine. Ron, a career forester, spent the next forty years cutting and monitoring this piece of central Maine’s northern hardwood forest, yielding 1,500 cords of various products and selling another 500 cords of stumpage.
Wicopy Woods - named after the rare leatherwood shrub (Dirca palustris) - has been a certified Tree Farm for over 40 years, winning Maine Outstanding Tree Farm of the Year in 1984 and 2020! It became a Forest Stewards Guild Model Forest in 2003. The forest is quite diverse overall, with 16 species. Sugar maple ranks first in total cubic volume (17%), followed closely by red maple (14%), northern white-cedar (13%), paper birch (13%) and white pine (12%). Pine dominates sawtimber stocking (32%), with sugar maple and cedar tied for second at 14% each.
Following retirement in 2006, Ron moved to New York and began looking for new stewards to carry his stewardship into a new era. In 2015, the property was acquired by a pair of University of Maine professors, Bob Seymour and Jessica Leahy. The new owners are attempting to maintain Ron’s exemplary stewardship, while also documenting, summarizing and publicizing Ron’s voluminous records.
The long-tenure of documented stewardship and use as a learning center make this property an ideal Forest Stewards Guild Model Forest. Visiting this property showcases a commitment to stewardship and effective succession planning.
Wicopy Woods was recently awarded the Maine Outstanding Tree Farm of the Year designation for the second time - for 2020. A new management plan will be written in 2021, with no major changes expected.
Maine Outstanding Tree Farm of the Year - 1984
Piscataquis County Tree Farm of the Year - 2018 (photo the left)
Maine Outstanding Tree Farm of the Year - 2020
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