Nature Preserve in Canfield Added to Old-Growth Network

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Two woodlands made up of trees that date back hundreds of years – including one in Canfield Township – will now forever be protected by the Old-Growth Forest Network.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources on Monday helped dedicate Kyle Woods State Nature Preserve, off Tippecanoe Road, south of U.S. Route 224 in Canfield Township, and Pymatuning State Park (Ashtabula County) in separate ceremonies.

“I am excited to connect more people with these forests that are so rich in Ohio history,” ODNR Director Mary Mertz said. “Protecting mature woods and old growth forest remnants is an important part of ODNR’s mission to conserve the state’s natural resources, and I am proud that Ohio is a leader in protecting our woodlands.”

Kyle Woods State Nature Preserve became the 12th state nature preserve to be inducted into the Old-Growth Forest Network.

It is a heavily wooded 82-acre site featuring American basswood, cucumber magnolia, wild black cherry, black tupelo, beech, tuliptree and several species of hickory and oak. Fifty-three acres is joining the network. The site is managed by ODNR’s Division of Natural Areas and Preserves.

“With the addition of Kyle Woods and the mature woods of Pymatuning, Ohio now has 28 forests in the network,” said Brian Kane, mid-Atlantic regional manager of the Old-Growth Forest Network. “Ohio and Pennsylvania lead the U.S. in their number of recognized forests.”

Two sections of Pymatuning State Park were recognized, including the Big Woods area, which features a 30-acre tract of deeply wooded land including tulip poplars up to 130-foot high. Species at Pymatuning include American basswood and American beech, red oak, shagbark hickory, sugar maple and yellow birch. An additional 15-acre section is primarily an Eastern hemlock, northern hardwood forest and offers examples of mature American beech, black cherry, cucumber magnolia, Eastern hemlock, red maple, swamp white oak and yellow birch.

The Old-Growth Forest Network aims to preserve at least one forest in every county in the U.S. that can sustain a forest. OGFN works to identify forests for the network, ensure their protection from logging and inform people of the forest locations.

Pictured at top: Trees are seen in Pymatuning State Park.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.