Making A Difference in Our County
We're working hard for the citizens we serve. Here are some examples of successful projects from the past year:
AGRICULTURE AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Wilcox County’s farm gate value totals $93 million, excluding broiler-integrator production, and ranks 39th in total farm gate value out of all of Georgia’s counties. Of the county’s 243,400 acres, 69 percent, or 168,155 acres, are forested. Timber sales are $6.2 million, a farm gate value that ranks 39th in the state. The county also brought in $1.1 million in pine straw sales, ranking 15th in the state. Wilcox County has a significant forest footprint, and private landowners own a large portion of this forestland. Wilcox and Dooly counties' Extension offices held a Longleaf Management and Productivity Field Day focusing on hands-on training for our county’s forest landowners. The day included sessions on bareroot longleaf development and stem form, containerized longleaf stem form and interplants, vegetation management of invasive species, hardwood control and baccharis control, wildlife enhancement with logging decks and field borders, and a discussion on commercial thinning followed by a session on timing, tree quality and value. The group learned the importance of prescribed burning and the techniques and planning for the burns. Forest landowners from Wilcox and Dooly counties, along with local foresters, attended the field day. Sixty-one interested parties attended, representing several thousand acres of privately owned forestland. Foresters represented several more thousand acres of company-owned forestlands and Georgia Forestry Commission employees represented all the forestland in both counties. Forest landowners are better prepared to manage their longleaf stand of timber and to be more profitable, have better habitats for wildlife and be better stewards overall.
WILCOX CITIZENS, 4-H’ERS GIVE BACK
Several years ago, fifth-grader Kelly Childers began a recycling program called “Recycle to Read Because You CAN.” Childers started at home with her grandparents and parents, then she brought the idea to the 4-H office. “What if everyone brought in aluminum cans?” asked Childers, who happened to love to read. The project began to grow. The community was asked for help and the office received a donated cotton wagon to house the cans until they could be taken to a buyer. The landowner gave the office permission to park the trailer as a drop-off point. Now, when the trailer is close to full, we sell the cans and all proceeds go to the Wilcox County Middle School and Wilcox County Elementary School libraries to purchase books on their “wish list.” To date, we have donated $1,132 for a total of 133 books. Childers graduated a few years ago and is at Valdosta State University pursuing her degree in school psychology. The good news is that her younger sister in eighth grade, Kristi, has agreed to take over the project.