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Tree removal extends bog’s life

BUCKEYE LAKE- As summer reluctantly approaches, Greater Buckeye Lake Historical Society Director J-me Braig said Cranberry Bog is ready for the season.

A new 50-foot dock is being installed plus three-foot by fourfoot information signs are being erected at each end to identify it for Buckeye Lake “day trippers.” “The identification of it has been up to us,” said Braig The Society manages the bog for ODNR.

Braig said the bog is looking very healthy after “swampy maples” and sumac were removed around the perimeter because they were literally weighing down the floating bog and causing pieces to break off during high winds. “They are very harmful,” said Braig. “Some people think they hold the bog together, but they don’t.”

The bog, which was once 50 acres of sphagnum moss, has been whittled down to less than 11 acres due to weather and wave action. The felled trees have created a reef around the outside of the bog to help protect it from waves and boats, and to create a fish habitat. “The bass love it,” Braig said, as do fishermen.

Braig said Buckeye All Seasons

Landscaping’s Joe Potvin assisted Society members and ODNR personnel remove the trees. “He has donated so much of his time,” she said.

The weight of a tree depresses the spongy bog surface, allowing lake and rainwater to pool on the surface, destroying the acidic conditions the bog requires and cutting channels through the bog mat. Braig said she’s seen evidence felling the trees has helped the bog. “I believe the bog is up,” she said, adding that devices have been installed around the lake to measure any moss disintegration.

Buckeye Lake Historical Society Board member Rob Klinger said grant money was used to hire a botanist for a bog assess- ment. His report recommended that many of the bog’s trees be removed to preserve the bog’s integrity. Klinger said Ohio Senator Tim Schaffer helped secure a $12,000 grant; 80 percent was used for felling the trees.

This year’s Bog Day is Saturday, June 21. The Society will ferry visitors to the bog for a small donation. Braig said another Bog Day in October is being considered. Braig said other visits can be arranged by calling or emailing the Buckeye Lake Museum for a permit. Simply provide the date of the visit and describe the boat that will dock there. “They can get the permits through us,” Braig said.

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