The National Park Service’s Olmsted Center for Landscape Preservation provided Gettysburg National Military Park with 13 youth from their landscape management program, Branching Out, to assist the park with orchard management. Branching Out engages young people in learning the concepts and techniques of landscape management practices within the National Park Service.
Through structured hands-on field experiences, participants are exposed to a variety of opportunities that can lead to higher education and career exploration in park management. Youth participants work alongside National Park Service staff and trade professionals to protect park resources while acquiring the knowledge and skills of landscape stewardship and conservation.
While at Gettysburg Branching Out participants learned from park experts the how-to’s of pruning orchard trees; the importance of pest management practices to reduce trunk girdling by voles; and tips to identify basic tree anatomy and physiology.
The park thanks Branching Out for their exceptional work and we look forward to working with Branching Out in the future!
For more information on Branching Out visit: http://www.nps.gov/oclp/branching_out.htm
In a future blog post I will write more about caring for Gettysburg’s historic orchards.
Zach Bolitho, Chief, Resource Management, August 8, 2012