Juniper Thinning Begins at Priday Ranch

May 10, 2022
The Land Trust recently did some juniper thinning at Priday Ranch.


The Land Trust has begun work to thin some of the junipers at Priday Ranch. Like many parts of Central Oregon, juniper trees grow at Priday Ranch in a greater abundance than they would have historically. This past month, around 250 acres at Priday Ranch were thinned. All of the work was done by hand with chainsaws and crews accessed the juniper by driving on existing roads, then hiking in on foot. Older trees were strategically left to resemble a more historical landscape. Thinned trees were cut and piled, and then this fall or winter, after the cut trees have had a chance to dry out, they will be burned when weather conditions are favorable and permit us to do so safely. All of these steps help ensure that soils and plants in the project area are protected and overall disturbance is limited.

The juniper thinning project at Priday Ranch provides many benefits. It will increase the amount of available water for native grasses and wildflowers. It will also help reduce fire danger, and, if a fire does occur, improve the land's ability to bounce back afterwards. The older trees left at Priday Ranch also provide important cover for Rocky Mountain elk and mule deer.

More juniper thinning is planned in the coming years at Priday Ranch. Stay tuned!

A hillside at Priday Ranch before juniper thinning (top) and afterwards (bottom). Photos: Land Trust.
A hillside at Priday Ranch before juniper thinning (top) and afterwards (bottom). Photos: Land Trust.