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The drier and hotter years ahead don’t have to spell trouble for the forests you steward. From recognizing and responding to drought stress in trees to planting tree species from other regions, there are steps you can take to mitigate the impacts of climate change in your forest.
We are working with landowners in San Juan County to address the unique challenges of managing island forests for both ecological health and economic viability. Increasingly, forest owners in San Juan County are seeking guidance on how to manage their overstocked stands for improved forest health. They are also looking for creative ways to use the excess woody material that is a byproduct of restoration efforts. For the past six years, NNRG and our partners have worked in many island forests, conducting one-on-one site visits, developing management plans, and hosting tours and classes. In 2018, NNRG hosted a series of workshops
Eve Lonnquist can often be found working in the woods, just like her grandmother, who bought Cedar Row Farm in 1919 for $2000 and planted its namesake row of cedars. Nestled in the Nehalem River foothills, the 160-acre forest is stewarded by Eve, her two brothers and her partner Lynn Baker. The family enjoys taking care of the land and balances multiple goals, including recreation and income from timber harvest as well as providing wildlife habitat. They are FSC-certified through NNRG’s group certificate and are members of the Oregon Woodland Cooperative, selling bundled firewood to grocery stores around the Portland
Bees need our help. Just five years ago Oregon saw a major bee die off, and pollinator populations continue to decline around the world. “We have more species of bees in the Pacific Northwest than all the states in east of the Mississippi,” says Andony Melathopoulos, a pollinator ecotoxicologist with OSU. “We really want to protect that endowment.” The Oregon Bee Project, a partnership bolstered by OSU Extension, Oregon Department of Agriculture, and Oregon Department of Forestry, is hard at work to prevent another die-off. The program engages communities about their local bees, provide diagnostic services for beekeepers to recognize emergent diseases,
Remember the Super-Axe-Hacker from The Lorax? The machine that could whack off four truffula trees with one smacker? Advances in logging technology have made this fantasy contraption a reality, with equipment like feller-bunchers, forwarders, skidders, and processors changing how we harvest. These machines can make ecological forestry better, efficiently and safely removing some trees while leaving others to continue providing wildlife habitat, clean water, carbon storage, and even beauty. Our Executive Director Seth Zuckerman shares his take on logging advances to a sold-out crowd at Ignite Seattle’s March event.
by Kelly Smith, NNRG volunteer On a cool and misty morning last September, Kirk Hanson and I visited Jackrabbit Farm in Southwest Washington. Kirk, Northwest Natural Resource Group’s Director of Forestry, needed to make observations and gather data for a new forest management plan for the farm, which had recently been funded through the USDA’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). My presence on this visit was due to my interest in “job shadowing” him on a site with elements of agroforestry and permaculture. As we drove down the forested driveway, a wild rabbit hopped across our path, welcoming us to
Paul Butler has had a life-long love of forests. Now that he and his wife steward their own forest they’ve taken steps to care for and enjoy their land. Paul tells us how his relationship with his woods has deepened over time and what actions he’s taking to make the forest healthy.
I’ll admit that I traveled to the worldwide General Assembly of the Forest Stewardship Council meeting last month in Vancouver, BC with a smidgen of skepticism. As I’ve re-immersed myself in ecological forestry since taking the helm at NNRG in June, I’ve been chagrined to learn that 15- and 20-year-old challenges are still dogging the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) in the Pacific Northwest: sparse interest from lumber mills and the difficulty connecting consumer demand with landowner supply — the so-called chicken-and-egg problem of certified wood markets. Of course, FSC certification has other kinds of value for our certified members. It
Kevin Kaster (right), owner of a small-scale sawmill in Clackmas Co., presents a sample product to forest managers, designers, and woodland owners. A Tour of “GOOD WOOD” Management and Products REGISTER TODAY! Can a forest be managed for different purposes? Why might one tree be cut and another left standing? How does the way our forests are managed affect the products that come from them? And, do you know where your wood comes from? Join the Build Local Alliance, Forests Forever, Inc., and OSU Extension to explore these questions on a “Good Wood” Management and Products tour. At this event hosted
2016 was an incredible year for Northwest Certified Forestry members and the forests they steward. Because of the dedicated community of ecologically-minded woodland owners, Pacific Northwest forests are healthier, more resilient homes for wildlife and people alike. Here are some highlights of our year: Accomplishments: We hosted 11 workshops on ecologically-based forest management, precision tree-felling, forest monitoring, and programs for natural resource professionals and engaged 267 participants. We conducted more than 92 site visits to forest landowners – including NCF members and beginning woodland owners. We completed 6 ecologically-based thinning projects across 65 acres We oversaw 4 forest restoration projects involving inter-planting, pre-commercial
Christine Johnson (with her husband Terrigal) has loved forests all her life. As NNRG’s board chair, she helps us work to protect the health, resilience, and character of these incredible places, share her love of Northwest woodlands every step along the way. Her 10-acre, FSC®-certified forest on Waldron Island is a living testament to Christine’s stewardship. Learn more about Christine and her journey:
This event has passed. To see more upcoming events, including SAWW trainings, please visit the NNRG Upcoming Events page. Upcoming Events Join Northwest Certified Forestry for a unique, hands-on training program for small woodland owners who are interested in learning how to safely cut down trees in the woods. Harvest planning, tree selection, and safe and accurate tree felling are the most important aspects of conducting a small-scale harvest. These skills are also valuable for clearing trails, harvesting firewood, and taking down potential hazard trees. This Safety and Woods Worker (SAWW) training course is based on the concept of “open face felling” and
Summer is the perfect time for major forest management activities like thinning trees, controlling weeds, and maintaining roads. Performing these stewardship activities in the dry season when sap flow is low will reduce damage to residual trees while minimizing soil compaction and other effects on forest ecosystems. Steward your Forest Clear winter debris from roads and trails for recreation and forest maintenance access. Conduct pre-commercial and commercial thinning. Be sure to wait until mid-June when the sap flow slows down as the bark on your trees is more vulnerable to damage until that time. Birds tend to fledge through July, so
Woodland owners in the Pacific Northwest are interested in maintaining forests that provide a broad range of ecological functions and economic goals. Enjoying wildlife and providing wildlife habitat are often motivators for stewarding woodlands. It’s important to understand how the habitat in your forest meets the needs of particular wildlife species and what you can do to maintain and enhance your forest for biodiversity. Many Northwest forests are in need of active forest management to create the complex forest structure, light for flowering plants, and space for food-producing shrubs that help wildlife thrive. Careful stewardship can help you to perpetually manage your forest on a
Greet the return of the growing season! The nesting season begins around March 15, so try to avoid any major timber management until chicks have left their nests around June 15. The window for planting is closing: make sure you get your tree seedlings and native plants safely in the ground by early April. By tending your plants, nurturing your wildlife, and walking your woods, you can enhance biodiversity, bolster habitat, and prepare for active summer management. Tend your Plants Buy native plants – find a sale near you. Plant seedlings by early April – learn more. Prune before dormancy ends
2015 was a productive year! Northwest Certified Forestry members showed their dedication to stewarding Pacific Northwest forests with ecologically-minded practices that contribute to the regional economy. We are so inspired by the forest stewards in our community who worked to enhance habitat for threatened and endangered species, remove invasive species, plant native seedlings and shrubs, pursue new markets, and do what it takes to nurture and sustain complex forest structure. Here are some highlights: Our Community 160 members across more than 162,000 acres in Washington and Oregon, More than 100 family forests and small businesses 12 youth camps and education centers 11
Join us to learn about ways to improve your forest’s health and use low value wood! Register today: http://sanjuans-biofuels.eventbrite.com Often there are significant byproducts from forest management and restoration treatments that amount to slash and other woody biomass left on the ground. This low value material includes small diameter trees, limbs, needles, leaves, and other woody parts. Many forests in the San Juan Islands are severely overstocked with a considerable assortment of low value material that is a potential fire hazard and limits biodiversity. Learn what you can do with this non-commercial wood material. This workshop will present new ways to use
In our Member Spotlight series, we highlight Northwest Certified Forestry (NCF) members who have used forest products for unique and entrepreneurial purposes on their land and within their communities. Often these projects help members earn supplemental income. For the second installment in the series, we introduce you to Gopher Valley Botanicals, a Forest Stewardship Council® certified member of our group certificate, who has sourced non-timber forest products from her woods to local markets. Gopher Valley Botanicals Located amid the rolling foothills of Yamhill County in the western Willamette Valley, Gopher Valley Botanicals (GVB) stewards a 20-acre forest comprised of Douglas-fir, Oregon white oak, and a wooded wetland. The landowners take an active management
In our Member Spotlight series, we highlight Northwest Certified Forestry (NCF) members who are improving ecosystem functions and who have cultivated forest products for unique and entrepreneurial purposes on their land and within their communities. In this edition, we introduce you to Digger Mountain Forestry-a Forest Stewardship Council® certified member of our group certificate, and Yankee Creek Forestry-an NCF Preferred Provider. Recently, these members provided woody debris for restoration projects focused on salmon habitat and wetland recovery in the Willamette Valley and the Southern Oregon Coast. Digger Mountain Forestry Digger Mountain Forestry stewards 650 acres of forest in Oregon’s Coast Range. In recent years Northwest Certified Foresty has put out calls