By Amy Grotta, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension – Columbia, Washington & Yamhill Counties
Recent posts on this blog have examined the problem of forest seedling supplies for small woodland owners, and the compromises that sometimes come with limited seedling choices. While the situation has gotten worse in the last couple of years, it is not a new dilemma. Cooperative seedling buying programs, where a group of landowners collectively contract with a nursery for their seedling needs, are one way that small woodland owners have worked to ensure a reliable seedling supply for themselves and their neighbors.
Both the Columbia and Washington County chapters of the Oregon Small Woodlands Association (CCSWA and WCSWA, respectively) have organized annual seedling programs for their members for the last 15+ years. The two programs have much in common, with a few differences. They each sell about 50,000-70,000 seedlings/year, distributed among dozens of members. Paul Nys (CCSWA) and Bob Shumaker (WCSWA) have been organizing forces behind these programs since their outset. I talked with Paul and Bob to shed some light on the benefits and challenges of keeping these programs going for the benefit of groups in other areas that may want to consider this approach. Continue reading →
By Amy Grotta, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension, Columbia, Washington & Yamhill Counties, and Paul Wilson & Linda Farris, Columbia County Master Woodland Managers
When Paul Wilson and Linda Farris bought their small property about 10 years ago, it was a reforestation failure. But they have succeeded in beating back immense Scotch broom and other invasives and have planted a diverse mix of trees. Not stopping there, they continue adding diversity by releasing native shrubs that don’t get in the way of their planted trees, and by planting more native shrubs and herbaceous plants to occupy gaps where the invasives used to be.
Paul and Linda propagate most of their own plants from seed and cuttings, having learned over time what methods work for different species. They shared their experience on a recent Twilight Tour, and afterwards agreed to write up and share their propagation tips (in the rest of this article). Thank you Paul and Linda. If you want to try your hand at this, fall is a good time to start.
The annual OSU Extension/Columbia County Small Woodlands Association summer tour is coming up. This year’s tour happens on Saturday, July 28th at Rod Nastrom’s place in Warren and the program for the day is “Woodland Roads: Best Management Practices”. Two of my Forestry Extension colleagues, Paul Adams and Steve Bowers, will be joining us as instructors for the program. Paul Adams is our Extension Watershed Management Specialist and he has had a long history of working on issues related to forest roads and streams. Steve Bowers, better known to many as the “Treeman”, is our Extension Agent in Douglas County and he brings to this topic his own practical experience as a logger and woodland owner. The two of them will no doubt have plenty of valuable insight to share.
(And, here’s a link to a newly revised Extension publication on the subject of road design for small woodland properties.)
On the tour, we will look at a variety of road designs, surface types, stream crossings, and slopes, and talk about the pros and cons of each. Following the tour will be a picnic lunch graciously provided by CCSWA, and then a firewood processor demonstration in the afternoon. I hope to see many of you there. Click here for a flyer with all the details.
interactive walking tour featuring forest management, wood marketing and connecting to the consumer, monitoring forest and ecosystem changes, and more;
“Goods From the Woods” display of products that originate from family owned forests;
“Iron Builder” competition!
Thanks to support from the abovementioned sponsors and the Oregon Forest Resources Institute, there’s no charge for this event (although a cash donation to cover the food is suggested). However, you mustRSVP for the cooks’ and volunteers’ sake. Since parking will be tight, you can catch a bus shuttle to the event from Forest Grove with the OSWA Annual Meeting contingent. Details on that when you RSVP (did I mention you must RSVP?).
I have been working with the Hayes family, Washington County Small Woodlands Association leaders, and folks from the Build Local Alliance to plan this event and I am really excited about it. I think it is going to be an outstanding day filled with learning for forest owners, users of wood, or those who are simply interested in learning about their local forests. Download a flyer here.