PLATTSMOUTH—If people thought wood would have limited uses, they would be wrong about wood.
“There’s no limit,” said Don Nelson, owner of the Cutting Edge Mill in Elkhorn. “There are so many things you can do with wood.”
Another wood expert agreed on all the items that come from this product of nature.
“Everything from mushrooms to bookcases,” said Kim Slezak, owner of Trees2Products of Milligan.
Mushrooms? Yes because they need wood to grow, according to Slezak.
The wonder of wood was a focal point at last weekend’s Forest Festival at Horning State Farm near Plattsmouth, which featured numerous businesses that make products from wood. These include pallets, fences, siding, benches, picnic tables and more. It could also be developed into biochar, a soil additive to help build it up and can also be used in lagoons to absorb unpleasant odors, according to Slezak.
Another wood business at the event was Frana Woodturning of Nebraska City. Owner David Frana set up a long table featuring items he made by hand, such as bowls, goblets, even a candle holder.
“Pretty much any kind of wood,” he said of his work.
Nelson sees a positive turnaround on the disposal of trees in the last decade. Instead of being thrown into landfills and being wasteful from their usefulness, more and more being processed into mulch, for example, he said.
“We are reusing our stuff, instead of disposing of it,” Nelson said. “It’s a matter of education.”
Even in non-wood homes, wood items bring something special to the décor, he said.
“As we build homes with no wood, when you bring in a piece of wood, it brings in character and it’s organic and every piece is different,” Nelson said.
The crowd also saw how certified arborists climb trees to perform duties like pruning.
“They climb for pruning branches off the tree if you can’t bring in a bucket or a lift,” said Jim Keepers, a certified arborist. “It’s a dangerous occupation. We have to be trained.”