ShareThis Page
Timbering plan will benefit Export property as well as community-park project |

Timbering plan will benefit Export property as well as community-park project

As Export officials continue saving money to develop a signature community park, they are looking to add to the coffers through a large parcel the borough owns in neighboring Murrysville.

The 74 acres off Borland Farm Road includes about 20 acres of forested area. Borough council members this week consulted with a forester to begin developing a plan to manage and timber the property.

“It was a place where a lot of people hunted, and much of it was used for recreation,” Councilman John Nagoda said. “But we have a lot of growth in the understory, and I think we need to start managing it.”

Dave O’Barto of Consulting Foresters agreed.

“The harvesting I’d propose would be a ‘seed-tree harvest’ to allow sunlight to the forest floor and spur growth,” O’Barto said.

Before that happens, however, invasive species need to be addressed.

“The first thing you’ll need to do is apply herbicide to the understory to get rid of invasives,” O’Barto said.

“Get rid of” is a relative term, however.

“It’s an ongoing process — you’ll never eradicate all of it,” O’Barto said. “Bad stuff’s going to come back, especially Japanese stiltgrass. I see it everywhere I go, and it’s bad.”

Herbicide typically is applied between May and September.

“We’re kind of out of the window for this year,” O’Barto told council. “But if you want to do this, next spring would be the time.”

Between now and then, O’Barto said he plans to walk the property, mark timber to be removed, estimate its value and consider a cutting date.

Properly managed harvesting could generate up to $1,000 per acre, O’Barto said.

“If I owned it, or if this was state forest land, I’d propose exactly what I have here,” he said.

Murrysville officials “are encouraged any time a property owner wishes to improve their property within the municipality,” Chief Administrator Jim Morrison said.

O’Barto and Export officials will work next on securing the permits necessary for managing the property.

Borough council voted 6-0 to enter into a contract with O’Barto, pending a review of the contract by solicitor Wes Long. Councilman Ed Persin was not present.

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, or via Twitter @MurrysvilleStar.

Dan Speicher | Tribune-Review
A parcel of land, owned by Export, off Old William Penn, and Borland Farm Rd., in Murrysville, on Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018.
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.