Past Events

Maple Syrup & Poison Oak: Making One and (Unrelatedly) Surviving the OtherThursday, October 15, 6 – 7:30 pm

Webinar recording (presentation on Making Maple Syrup from Bigleaf Maple is 5:30 to 50:45; presentation on Poison Oak is 51:00-1:31:00)

Ever wondered why maples put sugar in their sap in the first place? Our native bigleaf maples (Acer macrophyllum) are sugaring champions that require almost no equipment to make syrup. Barb will speak about how to tap trees and how she collects and processes the sap. Poison oak is a beautiful plant in our landscapes, right? Barb will talk about some of its virtues and interesting factoids, and what she learned about how to decrease your chances of getting a rash.

For more information on maple sugaring, check out the Oregon State University publication “Nontimber Forest Products for Small Woodland Owners: Bigleaf Maple Syrup.”

Barb Lachenbruch: A retired OSU professor of tree biology and wood science, Barb straddles life between Corvallis and an off-grid cabin and woodlands, where she retreats a few days a week with her husband (Everett Hansen) and their dogs. They’ve thinned, logged, done a riparian restoration project, and have been making just enough syrup for their own use from the bigleaf maples every year. Barb also has practical knowledge about working with poison oak from her PhD research on its biomechanics and water transport. She writes fiction and creative non-fiction (including forestry-related blogs, and posts the flowers as they bloom at their Coast Range cabin in Lobster Valley (Instagram, @botanybarb).

Community & Landowner Wildfire Preparedness: Challenges & Strategies
Thursday, September 17, 7 – 8:30 pm

Webinar recording (webinar begins at 0:25)

Join Chris Chambers, Wildfire Division Chief for Ashland Fire & Rescue for his story of fighting the Almeda fire and a discussion of the implications of the fire for home and community wildfire protection in the Rogue Valley.

Chris Chambers: An Ashland native and graduate of the OSU College of Forestry, Chris has worked at Ashland Fire & Rescue since 2002. He coordinated National Fire Plan grants with hundreds of private landowners, co-authored the 2004 Ashland Community Wildfire Protection Plan and 2005 Jackson County Integrated Fire Plan, and participated in the genesis and ongoing implementation of the Ashland Forest Resiliency Stewardship Project. Chris started Ashland’s Firewise Communites and Fire Adapted Communities programs and also coordinates management of Ashland’s municipal forestlands, including the city’s prescribed burning program. Chris has worked nationally with the International Association of Fire Chiefs, serves on the board of the Southern Oregon Forest Restoration Collaborative, and was a member of the Governor’s Council on Wildfire Response in 2019.

Maintaining a Healthy Forest in an Uncertain Climate

This 6-part webinar series was held in June and July 2020. Topics and speakers are listed below. To view webinar recordings and access readings and other class materials, see the Class Website. Click on Class Resources.

June 10: Climate change projections: overview and consequences.  Speaker: Dr. Dominique Bachelet, Oregon State University

June 17. Strategies for reducing impacts of drought, insects and disease. Speaker: Dr. Dave Shaw, Oregon State University

June 24. Reducing fire risk in times of change.  Speaker: Dr. Daniel Leavell, Oregon State University.

July 1.  Virtual field tour.  See and discuss examples of on-the-ground strategies to reduce fire risks, vulnerability to drought and pests, and increase resilience.  How to get started on your risk assessment. 

July 8.  Converting woody biomass into biochar.  Speaker: Kelpie Wilson, Wilson Biochar Associates. 

July 15.  Completing your risk assessment and mitigation plan.  Strategies and resources for getting the work done.   

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