looking for recommendations for unique site
I have about an acre (or close to it) in one part of my property that I'd like to gradually start improving. It's a low area that stays pretty wet for some parts of the year. Presently there are tulip poplars, red maples, black walnuts, sycamores, ashes, and several trees of a species that I'd like to positively identify that I think might be something like a sugarberry or hackberry but doesn't have the warty bark. (I should probably post some photos of it.) There were a couple really nice, tall tulip poplars, but one started leaning and then fell over last year and the tallest (over 2' in diameter) was killed by lightning earlier this year. Most of the trees in this area are crooked and leaning, though, just especially poor timber form. There also seems to be a disproportionate number of dead trees, and there's a heavy percentage of ash trees -- are emerald ash borers going to clear them all out soon? I like the ash trees, especially because I hardly have any anywhere else, but I don't like their leaning and bending form. Although some of the trees are quite big, something about this area has prevented a good canopy from forming, so there's quite a bit of Chinese privet and poison ivy in the understory (and mayapples in areas, which I like.) What trees would you recommend for this area? I'm interested either in edibles or timber species with wood with special uses. I've also thought about bamboo. Or gradually transitioning the area back to grass for more pasture. Could it be a good area to graft black walnut cultivars for nut production? Could I grow white tupelo (ogeechee lime) anywhere in zone 7 North Carolina on the western side of the Piedmont (roughly between Charlotte and the Virginia line) and in this site in particular? Could a bald cypress or pond cypress grow well there? Those two aren't species I really know anything about (or the difference between them), but doesn't one of them have rot resistant wood? Are there any eucalyptus that would grow there? Do willows have other uses besides baskets? How do you think pawpaws would do there? What other thoughts do you have?