Our mission: Restoring the American chestnut to our Eastern forests. To get there we have to get to the orchards; hauling seedling trees from our greenhouse, towing a tractor, a water tank and other heavy equipment.
For the past 10 years our restoration research has really counted on the Leffel Center’s 2003 4x4 Nissan truck; which was purchased with donations from members and supporters in 2007. The Nissan has helped us deliver over 10,000 seedlings and logged over 130,000 tough miles. Here at Leffel Center (The PA Chestnut Research and Operations Center on Penn State's Campus) there are over 30 acres of research plots being managed, with almost 10,000 trees in the ground, and at least 5,000 seedlings growing at any time.
The Nissan has served us well but it is nearing the end of its life expectancy. It is critical for our work that we plan to replace this vehicle. We are raising funds to purchase a late model used vehicle for the 2018 growing season. Note that the current truck has some resale value, and will be sold, with the proceeds added to the new truck fund.
· More storage capacity for transporting the number of seedlings and equipment that we move each growing season. We want to replace the current 4’ bed with at least a 6’ or 8’ bed.
· Better 4-wheel drive for handling the hills and off road driving. The current Nissan truck doesn’t always get us up the slopes in our planting locations.
· Greater towing capacity to enable us to tow our tractor and other equipment to other locations and assist volunteers at other research orchards throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Save the American chestnut, save the forest! No it isn't that simple but we at the PA/NJ Chapter of The American Chestnut Foundation believe that the work we are doing to restore the American chestnut to the Eastern forest could contribute to the restoration of other native forest species under threat.
About the American chestnut (Castanea dentata) Once abundant, the American chestnut was a forest giant that grew over 100 feet tall, provided rot resistant building materials, and sweet nuts for people and wildlife. It's been all but gone since the turn of the last century. But for the last 30 years, we've been working to create resistance in this native tree so that we can restore it to the Eastern forest landscape. We've made good progress with our research and are now combining that work with the other cutting edge research in biotechnology and biocontrol. It may take another 30 years to restore this species, but we won't give up.
For more information please visit our website: www.patacf.org
Prefer to donate by check?
Send your donation to:
PATACF - Truck Fund206 Forest Resource LabUniversity Park, PA 16802
Writetruck in the memo line of your check.
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