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New to Tree Planting?
When you become a tree planter you must make a commitment to yourself to work hard in a challenging environment. It is common for the land, weather, access and stock type to change quickly from one day to the next. A planting season starts in late April or early May for most people. May usually consists of cold mornings, cool rain and lots of enthusiasm. By mid-June, the weather starts to heat-up and your planting skills are at their best. Most planting camps work four or five days with one day off spent in the closest town. At the end of June, it is well advised to take a short break to recover before the summer work begins
Learn More: The Daily Routine
You wake up at five or six in the morning, get dressed, and stumble into the mess tent. A huge breakfast awaits you, and when you've finished eating, you make your lunch from the array of goodies provided by the cook, such as: sandwiches, granola bars, cookies, fruit, vegetables, or trailmix. Then you pile into your crew vehicle (usually a supercab truck) and head off to the block. Onsite, you grab your planting bags, bag-up with trees, pick up your shovel and head out to your designated piece of land. After nine or ten hours, you return to camp, where you can wash up and eat another huge meal. An important part of the planting experience is eating. It is important to replace all of the calories you'll burn during the day. Planters who don't eat or drink enough have low energy and consequently low numbers. After dinner, it's all up to you. Guitars appear, letters get written and there's always conversation by the fire or in the mess tent. Most planters crash by nine or ten, getting reseted for the next day
The Truth of the Matter
Tree planting is damn hard work. Although we love it, it is not the job for everyone. New planters should come to a season expecting to work harder than they ever have before. All planters contribute to group tasks (unloading tree shipments, etc), working as a team to make the entire season a success. Tree planting is unpredictable! Anticipate days where stock (or the ground) is frozen, the land is rocky, or the crew plants faster than stock deliveries can be brought in. It is important to make each good planting day count, and remember, complacency is a terrible waste of a potentially great season. Aim for each day to be your biggest