REGIONAL—If you’re looking to make some extra cash this winter, consider gathering black spruce cones for the Department of Natural Resources. The DNR’s state forest nursery is …
REGIONAL—If you’re looking to make some extra cash this winter, consider gathering black spruce cones for the Department of Natural Resources.
The DNR’s state forest nursery is critically short of black spruce cones and are paying $100 per bushel for people to go out and gather them, mostly from recent black spruce timber sales. The cones contain seeds that can allow the DNR to create the next generation of seedlings for reforestation efforts. The DNR reforests about 3,000 acres of black spruce forest annually.
“Over the last few years, the number of collectors has decreased and we are in critical need of black spruce cones,” said Sarah Ebert, state forest nursery manager. “Collecting black spruce now is a great way to earn some cash before the holidays.”
People interested in collecting black spruce cones should first contact one of the DNR’s seed drop-off stations to get information and instructions on collecting, handling and labeling the cones. The DNR Forestry seed drop-off stations that are buying black spruce cones include Hibbing, Littlefork, Orr, and Tower.
Only high-quality, ripe, closed black spruce cones free of stems and debris are eligible for purchase. The window to collect and sell viable black spruce cones is open now through February 2024.