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Biasiolli Forest

Biasiolli Forest

Comprehensive Plant List

Botanical Assessment

We are greatly pleased to announce our sixth 500-Year Forest of 107 acres, whose owners are Frank and Eleanor Biasiolli (pronounced be as e o ly). They purchased 118 acres in 1991 of which 107 acres is now the 500-Year Forest. This forest  is located in very southwestern Greene County on the Lynch River. It rests on the north facing slopes of County Line Mountain, an ideal forest location. Frank has been caring for this forest for a number of years in the manner of a 500-Year Forest. Photo courtesy of PEC.

September 2014 Forest Report

BiasiolliDownyRattlesnakePlantainSmA note from Frank and Eleanor Biasiolli summarized goings on that contributed “to knowledge about and the health of our forest this year – biotic inventory, stilt grass control effort, deer exclusion fencing, permanent study plots.”

The inventory yielded 231 species, 12 new to Greene County. Unfortunately, one of those is waveyleaf basketgrass. Virginia Forestry and Wildlife Group is working on invasive species removal and on the inventory and plots. That firm’s Brian Morse said “we wrapped up the stiltgrass project for the year. Our team made great progress and covered more of the property than we originally thought.” However, they discovered wavyleaf basketgrass, “a major new threat to Virginia and previously not know from this location (but found in the nearby national park).  This sighting has been reported to DCR Natural Heritage. We treated what we found and Frank has since located and treated another patch.”


The deer fencing is set for winter installation, with review requested by easement holder Piedmont Environmental Council. The proposed fencing falls within the forest management parameters already in the easement language and is also part of an invasives control measure recommended by Austin Jamison of Chesapeake Wildlife Heritage. Asked for the best long-range approach, he said the forest needs “a combination of deer exclusion (until an area is re-vegetated) and spraying.” Once leaves are down, Austin will work with Frank on siting the fence.






Earlier Forest Reports

February 2012

Frank BiasiolliIn 1991 Frank and Eleanor Biasiolli purchased 116 acres bounded by the Lynch River on the western border of Greene and Albemarle counties.

East of Shenandoah National Park’s Ivy Creek overlook, the property is bisected by a small tributary of the Lynch River with two-thirds of the property composed of north facing slopes broken up by small, intermittent streams or seeps which are floristically diverse, with numerous ferns and herbs. Scattered large Sassafras, Yellow Popular, and White Pine, perhaps 100 years old, can be found in the lower section of this area while the ridge tops and higher elevations of the property contain older Chestnut Oak and Black Gum some of which may be as old as 200 year. Since their purchase of the property the Biasiollis have worked to control nonnative invasive plants found on the property and to promote the growth of a diverse, native forest.


The underlying strata are very old and complicated. Consisting of granite and grandiorite formations, it is a pretty complex composition from the pre-Cambrian times. 

Area 1

Area 1 is a large area, 40 acres, at the top of the property. 
The trees are larger and much older and the logging
in the recent past was apparently a light highgrading,
removing mostly the larger and more valuable oaks.
High up, chestnut oak is now the predominant species, and in places mountain laurel is abundant in the understory. Black gums are also common in the canopy. Many of these trees are well over 100 years old, and some perhaps 200 years or more.

Area 2

Area 2 occupies only 10 acres on a ridge that is very steep on the side sloping to the north, down to the Lynch River. Some of the trees on these steep slopes appear to be very old, some of the chestnut oaks perhaps over 300 years old.

Area 3

Area 3 comprises half of the property and occupies the
central portion. Most of this area was used for livestock
grazing, and probably even some cultivation in places.
The forest now is 30 to 40 years old, with scattered
larger, older trees.

Persimmon TreeThere are some beautiful white pines up to 30 inches or so, and scattered, equally large yellow poplar. There is an unusual number of large sassafras, many of these open grown also, some larger than 24 inches. Some of these larger trees are probably 100 years old. The young trees are a mixture of yellow poplar, Virginia and white pines, black locust, basswood, red maple, black birch, hemlock (many of which have been killed by the adelgid), and other species, with a relatively small admixture of oaks.  Overall, it is a well stocked and attractive forest. The seeps are floristically diverse, with lots of ferns and herbs. Lush beds of silvery spleenwort (a fern) are especially attractive, and golden ragwort was blooming abundantly in some seeps.

Invasive PlantsForest Stream

Invasive plants are a problem, especially on the moister sites. Oriental bittersweet, barberry, Japanese stiltgrass, and garlic mustard presently appear to pose the biggest problem, and it will be difficult to keep them under control without help.


Fall 2013

Owners are preparing for their forest’s first biotic inventory with great anticipation of finding rare plants. Tom Wieboldt, curator of vascular plants at Virginia Tech’s Massey Herbarium, will make a winter visit to the forest in early 2014. This will be the first of our inventories done using a standardized protocol developed with the assistance of Foundation partner Natural Heritage Program, a division of the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. Frank and Eleanor Biasiolli said they appreciate the chance to meet with Tom, have him conduct the biotic survey and determine whether any rare or endangered flora remain on the property. Between 1850 and 1970, much of the property had been used for pasture, field crops, animal husbandry, and timber. However, Frank reports, there are several intermittent streams with pretty constant marshy headwaters and a long rocky ridge with outcrops that might not have been compromised.


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