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Re-oak Wine Country

Articles: Re-oak Wine Country

An oracle oak (Quercus ×morehus) at St. Francis Winery frames hills above Glen Ellen that were blackened in the October 2017 firestorm. Photo: Kathy Morrison
The following account of a community’s remarkable response to tragedy is an excerpt of a story that appeared in the winter 2018 issue of Flora, a publication of the California Native Plant Society.
Even as October’s fires were raging across swaths of Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino counties, concern sprouted about the fate of the region’s trees, particularly the area’s native oaks.
Restoration expert Betty Young and fellow volunteers from the California Native Plant Society Milo Baker Chapter in Sonoma County began gathering acorns from around the area. It was prime harvest season, and the seeds could be banked against the day when those scorched acres could be replanted.
The firestorm that swept through Wine Country burned an estimated 200,000 acres, killed more than 40 people, and destroyed or damaged 8,600 structures, including homes of some CNPS members. Large portions of parks and preserves, including 100 percent of the 535-acre Bouverie Preserve in ...


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