Gov. Markell celebrates Arbor Day at Blackbird State Forest

Forest Legacy Update_JPEGGovernor Markell Celebrates Arbor Day at Blackbird State Forest – Delaware completes $595,000 purchase of historic 85-acre Wilson Farm to be added to Redden State Forest.

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TOWNSEND, DE (May 7) –State Forestry Administrator Michael A. Valenti announced at today’s Arbor Day ceremony at Blackbird State Forest that the State of Delaware had completed the $595,000 purchase of the historic Wilson Farm, an 85-acre parcel of forestland that will become part of the 12,500-acre Redden State Forest near Georgetown, Sussex County. The deal was funded by Delaware’s Open Space Preservation Program and marks the latest acquisition in its multi-year “Green Horizons Project” to sustain working forests, improve water quality, and protect wildlife habitat in key environmental regions on the Delmarva Peninsula. In May of 2012, Delaware purchased 339 acres of forestland that are now part of Redden State Forest. In cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service’s Forest Legacy Program, plans are in the works to purchase an additional four parcels within the next year.

“Preserving Delaware’s open space is an important part of maintaining Delaware’s quality of life,” said Governor Jack Markell.

Located west of U.S. 113 between Ellendale and Georgetown, the new acreage will be added to the existing Jester Tract of Redden State Forest. The land will be sustainably managed by the Delaware Forest Service for multiple objectives will be available to the public for recreational uses such as hunting, hiking, and wildlife observation

“Thanks to the generous support of the Markell Administration and members of the General Assembly, future Delaware residents and visitors will enjoy this area for many years to come ” Valenti said.