Author: Outreach

Camp Robbinswold: Growing the Next Generation of Trees and Leaders

Nestled on the edge of the Olympic Peninsula about halfway down Hood Canal, Camp Robbinswold includes 570 acres of young, older, and mixed-age forest that is Forest Stewardship Council® certified through NNRG’s FSC® group certificate. The camp property includes 1.5 miles of shoreline and tidelands, a 10-acre freshwater lake, 350 acres of forest managed for sustainable timber production, and 220 acres of forest set aside for conservation.  For nearly 100 years, Camp Robbinswold has drawn campers from western Washington (and far beyond), who explore the camp’s shores and forests whilst learning leadership skills, practicing outdoor recreation basics, expanding their ecological

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Forest Tour: Stand Release Techniques for Small Woodlands

This twilight tour will showcase a range of techniques for releasing young trees from competition. When attempting to establish a new generation of trees, forest owners face two fundamental tasks that can become increasingly tricky: seedling release and pre-commercial thinning. Seedlings planted after harvest face steep competition for light, nutrients, water, and native and nonnative plants. As a young stand ages, the trees can begin to compete with one another for the same limited resources. Landowners have two basic options for reducing competition and optimizing the growth of their preferred trees: seedling release, when the plantation is young, and pre-commercial

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ARE WE OLD GROWTH YET? NNRG TURNS 30!

Since its founding in 1992, NNRG has been led and staffed by a small, rotating band of idealists and innovators. 30 years later, though the team remains small, the impact of our work has spread as swiftly as a field of salmonberry that’s found a gap in the canopy. When NNRG sprouted 30 years ago in Port Townsend, it went by another name: the Olympic Peninsula Foundation, or OPF. In the early part of the 1990s, OPF was focused on improving salmon habitat and stream restoration in the Olympic Peninsula, and providing jobs to forest workers who had been left

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Habitat Burns, Burning Love, and Loving Butterflies at Beazell Memorial Forest

It’s that classic love story: boy meets girl, boy buys forest, girl marries boy, boy plants 100,000 trees. Okay, not classic, exactly, but sweet, definitely.  When Fred Beazell bought over 500 acres of former farmland near Corvallis in the early sixties, he had dreams of living on the land with his long-time sweetweart, Dolores Anthony. The couple married a few years later, but for decades continued to live in Silicon Valley, where they both worked in tech. Still, Fred made frequent weekend trips to the land and found immense joy in digging holes and planting seedlings – over 100,000 of

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Forest Tour: Intro to Ecologically-Based Timber Harvesting

Stewarding a beautiful, healthy forest doesn’t have to mean locking the gate and throwing out the key. In fact, careful stewardship can help you to perpetually manage your forest in a way that improves wildlife habitat, sustains forest health, and provides long-term income opportunities through high-quality timber products. Forest owners in Western Washington are increasingly interested in maintaining forests that provide a broad range of ecological functions and economic goals. This free workshop will introduce you to the principles and economics of ecological forestry, the tools to implement it successfully on smaller parcels, and the structural and biotic features of

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Ode to Pa Hanson

I’ve participated in multiple surveys of small woodland owners over the years, and each time we ask the question “why do you own forestland,” the value of “legacy” is almost invariably in the top four reasons expressed. Woodland owners want to know their efforts as good stewards will endure and be passed on to future generations – whether within their own family, or other like-minded stewards.  The importance of legacy has grown significantly for me since my father passed away a few weeks ago. I gained my awe and appreciation for nature, and my stewardship ethic, working side-by-side with him

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Hands-On Forest Health Strategies for Western Washington Forest Owners

Learn hands-on strategies for managing healthy forests in Western Washington. Many forest owners across Western Washington are interested in taking a hands-on approach to improving the health, resilience and productivity of their forests, but may lack the information, skills and resources to do so. At this workshop, local and regional experts will introduce forest owners to simple, do-it-yourself strategies for thinning their forests, mitigating slash and creating value-added products. Participants will develop a deeper understanding of the ecological risks facing their forests due to wildfire, drought, disease, and insect infestation. Participants will learn how to evaluate forest conditions, select trees

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How The Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Built a Nursery that Supports Land and Community

This article originally appeared in the December 2021 newsletter of Treeline, the regional forest adaptation network. It is reprinted here with permission. You can find the complete newsletter here. A conversation with Jeremy Ojua, Lindsay McClary and Kayla Seaforth The Natural Resources Department at the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde (CTGR) has been operating the Tribal Native Plant Materials Program since 2014. It started with a vision of producing locally sourced native plants for habitat restoration and cultural education, and was originally funded by an Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board “Plants for the People” grant, which they were awarded in partnership

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2020 Reforestation Project: Year 2 Report

This article is part of the Hanson Family Forest series. In January 2020 we planted 18 acres on our family’s land near Bucoda, WA in an effort to restore several degraded sites that had been logged by a previous landowner, but not replanted. These were challenging sites to recover as they were comprised of either dense brush, Himalayan blackberry, mixed grasses, a smattering of naturally regenerated hardwoods, thin or compacted soils, or any combination of these conditions. The site preparation and planting strategy we used is summarized in an earlier blog, Raising 5,200 Children by Shovel and Machete, so I

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2022 Winter/Spring Native Plant Sales

The winter wet season in the Pacific Northwest is an ideal time to plant young trees and native shrubs! Planting native trees and shrubs enhances forest biodiversity by providing habitat for wildlife and forage for pollinators. It’s also a great way connect to the land and increase your aesthetic and recreational appreciation for the forest.

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2021 in Pictures

Throughout the year, NNRG’s staff have had the privilege to visit some very cool places, talk to interesting small, people, and experience the beauty and bounty of the Pacific Northwest. Our work has taken us from the Willamette Valley oak savannas to the coastal forests of the San Juan Islands, and beyond. Take a look at some of the shots we collected from our work and projects along the way.  NNRG Director of Forestry Kirk Hanson conferring with a land manager at Taylor Mountain Forest. NNRG Executive Director Seth Zuckerman and Director of Programs Rowan Braybrook accept the King County

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2021: The Year’s Accomplishments In Review

2022 is just days away, and the NNRG team is itching to get to work on some of the new projects planned for the year. But before we continue on our mission to strengthen the ecological and economic vitality of Northwest forests and communities, we’d like to take a moment to reflect on some of NNRG’s most notable achievements and activities of 2021. 1. Launched a project to test climate adaptation techniques for Northwest forests At the start of 2021, NNRG and partners launched a new demonstration project to test techniques that can help forests endure the kinds of climatic

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BUY LOCAL FROM WELL-MANAGED FORESTS

There are so many brilliant reasons to buy local. When you trade 2-day delivery for fresh-from-the-forest, you’re supporting local landowners, sustainable forestry practices, and guaranteed high-quality products. Many local forest owners make and sell non-timber forest products that would make wonderful stocking stuffers or can feed your home hearth. This holiday season, consider supporting ecological forestry by purchasing from one of the forests below.  NNRG MEMBERS OAK BASIN TREE FARMCanopy Essential Oils Canopy Essential Oils are a handcrafted collection of natural oil extracts carefully steam distilled from the tender bough tips of Oregon native conifers on FSC®-certified Oak Basin Tree

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2021 NNRG Staff & Board Book Picks

We asked the NNRG staff and board — notorious for thinking about forests as much off-the-clock as on — for the best forestry, nature, PNW, and environment-related books they read this year. The result is a list as varied as it is long! Click on a title below to read about the book, or scroll down to read about the whole list.  Backyard Bounty: The Complete Guide to Year-Round Organic Gardening in the Pacific Northwest Linda Gilkeson “Packed with a wealth of information specific to the Pacific Northwest, this complete guide emphasizes low-maintenance methods, covers problems related to common pests

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An Easier Way to Inventory Your Forest

Conducting a timber and woody biomass inventory of a forest may sound complicated. But as a forest owner, it’s one of the first steps you’ll need to take before diving into the substantial decisions of how to steward your forest.

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Hands-On Forest Health Strategies for Camano Island Forest Owners

Learn hands-on strategies for managing healthy forests on Camano Island Many forest owners across Western Washington are interested in taking a hands-on approach to improving the health, resilience and productivity of their forests, but may lack the information, skills and resources to do so. At this workshop, local and regional experts will introduce forest owners to simple, do-it-yourself strategies for thinning their forests, mitigating slash and creating value-added products. Participants will develop a deeper understanding of the ecological risks facing Camano Island forests due to wildfire, drought, disease, and insect infestation. Participants will learn how to evaluate forest conditions, select

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Forestry & Environmental Science Education in the Pacific Northwest

Professor Jerry Franklin, far right, lectures a University of Washington class in a ponderosa pine forest in Oregon. Photo by Debbie Johnson. If you’re interested in a career involving forest management, natural resources, or environmental science the Pacific Northwest has a wonderful range of higher education programs covering those topics. In fact, several NNRG staff have attended or are currently attending these programs. Below is a living list of higher education forestry and natural resource programs in the Pacific Northwest. See something missing? Let us know at outreach@nnrg.org. Central Washington University (Ellensburg, WA) Bachelor of Science (BS) in Environmental Science

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These Boots are Made for Walking (Around in the Forest)

Unless you own a forest and have had an NNRG forester out for a site visit, the details of a forester’s job might be a little murky to you. You suspect it involves wearing a cool vest, tree puns, and something called DBH tape…right?  In the interest of pulling back the curtain on the critical work our foresters do―and perhaps informing those who wish to pursue this rewarding career path―we asked our foresters Kirk Hanson, Jaal Mann, and Sam Castro to describe what they do behind the scenes at Northwest Natural Resource Group. Because it’s not all just romping through

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Bringing Biochar Back

Biochar is a form of charcoal sometimes used as a soil amendment in agriculture. But that’s really only half the story. It’s produced when organic waste material, such as forest slash, is combusted in the presence of limited oxygen. Though often described as a soil amendment, in Pacific Northwest forests it might be better thought of as a standard component of soil ― that is now missing or depleted from many forests in the Pacific Northwest. Although we may associate fires and fire-adapted landscapes with the eastern Cascades, we know from oral and written history, dendrochronology, and sediment cores that forests west

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