Rick Sermon: Forest Restoration Starts in Heart, Nursery

Rick Sermon is helping to restore Mill Creek forest. Photo by Mark Bult
Rick Sermon is helping to restore Mill Creek forest. Photo by Mark Bult

It had always been Rick Sermon’s dream to bring the joy of a greenhouse and nursery to his workplace. Sermon saved that task for just before his retirement.

Before that, he had one last thing to take care of as Superintendent of the Redwood Coast Sector of California State Parks: steering the acquisition of the largest land transfer by Save the Redwoods League. In 2002, his sector accepted the Mill Creek forest from the League. We and California State Parks are restoring this logged forest so it will resemble a majestic old-growth forest with giant redwoods and diverse, abundant wildlife. About the size of two Manhattan islands and near the Oregon border, Mill Creek is now part of Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park.

After a career of more than 30 years with California State Parks, and after he built his dream greenhouse and nursery at Mill Creek, Sermon retired as Superintendent. But he didn’t leave. Now he supervises the nursery.

“The nursery is one of the things I do to keep involved,” Sermon said. “It’s a big part of my life that I’m not ready to walk away from yet.”

Thanks to our members’ support, the Mill Creek Nursery planted about 9,000 seedlings during the 2009–10 planting season.

Seedlings aren’t all that get a great start at the nursery: Local youths and volunteers gain valuable work experience and an introduction to job and career opportunities by growing and caring for the young trees there.

Want to get involved? With a gift to the League you can have a redwood seedling planted in a California forest where it is needed most. Donate today!

About the author

Since 1918, Save the Redwoods League has protected and restored redwood forests and connected people with their peace and beauty so these wonders of the natural world flourish.

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