Benjamin Bohall's blog

A photo of the Nebraska Firefighters Museum in Kearney, Nebraska
Nebraska Firefighters Museum celebrates the past, while looking to the future

In the front lobby of the Nebraska Firefighters Museum and Education Center in Kearney, Matt Fitzgerald smiles and greets a small family that just entered the building.

“Do you guys want some firefighter helmets?” he asks the family’s two children. Both light up with grins and nod enthusiastically.

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State Forester John Erixson points to hardwood stand in Cedar Canyon.
Meet your Nebraska State Forester

Before coming to the Nebraska Forest Service (NFS), John Erixson, a Nebraska native, spent more than 20 years managing natural resources in Idaho for a private consulting firm. He holds bachelor and master's degrees in resource management from the University of Idaho. He is an active member of several regional and national organizations, including the Nebraska Riparian Task Force, National Association of State Foresters, and Western Forestry Leadership Coalition

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A photo of Cryer Park in Omaha (Photo by Rachel Anderson)
'A garden for flutterers and flowers'

By Benjamin Bohall, Nebraska Forest Service Staff

When Angie Ratekin first moved to the Skylark Cryer neighborhood in Omaha, she had no idea she was putting down roots among kindred souls. That is, until she attended her first neighborhood association meeting.

“I went to the meeting and right away they told me, ‘Hey, we’re thinking about creating a garden in the park.’ I immediately thought, ‘I’m going to love this neighborhood.’”

But it wasn’t going to be just any old garden.

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The small, unique cabin was built with cross-laminated timber (CLT), but adorned with furniture constructed from locally-harvest redcedar wood. (Photo courtesy of Jason Griffiths)
A place for eastern redcedar

If you’re interested in studying nature, you can’t do much better than Cedar Point Biological Station (CPBS).

Owned and operated by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln since 1974, the site serves as a field research facility and experimental classroom for UNL students and staff. Cedar Point sits on the south edge of the Sandhills and the North Platte River Valley. It’s isolated, and more importantly – full of wildlife. The perfect environment for budding biologists.

“It’s really quite beautiful,” said Jason Griffiths, UNL Associate Professor of Architecture.

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Photo of emerald ash borer gallery in first-confirmed Lincoln case
Emerald ash borer confirmed in Lincoln

The emerald ash borer has been confirmed in Lincoln, Nebraska.

The Nebraska Department of Agriculture made the announcement on Tuesday, April 23rd after City of Lincoln workers detected EAB galleries while removing a tree inside of city limits. This marks the sixth official sighting in the state – including Omaha, Greenwood, and Fremont. EAB has been found in 35 states and five Canadian provinces.

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Jerred and Sam dropping off supplies in Hooper
Returning the favor
Jerred Berrner (left) and Sam Schumacher (right) of Dalton Fire & Rescue arrive in Hooper, Nebraska with supplies and donations for Winslow, Nebraska flood victims. 

As the old saying goes, “What goes around, comes around.”

That’s not always a bad thing. Just ask the community of Winslow, Nebraska.

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Mike Repas stops for a quick night's rest in the Kisatchie National Forest in Louisiana.
A path for planting

For most people, finishing a masters’ degree is a major feat in itself. Mike Repas had just finished his third. Pair that with working a full-time job for an industrial supply company, and it was safe to say he was ready for a change of pace.

“To put it politely, I was absolutely burnt out,” Repas laughed.

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Picture of volunteers and NFS staff planting at the 2017 Horning Farm Field Day
Less weeds, more WOW at Horning Farm

Here's a snapshot from a garden design demonstration put on as part of Horning Farm Field Day last September near Plattsmouth, Nebraska. This event, hosted by the Nebraska Forest Service at its easternmost research forest, was a chance for the public and green industry professionals to learn the latest in tree and landscape news.

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Photo of Balsam Fir
Finding the right Christmas tree for your home

It's that time of year! We asked asked former Rural Forestry Program Leader John DuPlissis for his advice on finding the perfect tree for your holiday celebrations!

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