Monday, December 30, 2019

Webinar series will help landowners care for their woods

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Do you have woods in your backyard? Penn State research estimates that nearly half a million Pennsylvanians own a small patch of woodland -- something less than 10 acres in size. In fact, the vast majority of Pennsylvania landowners have fewer than 10 acres. These small patches add up to about a million acres, or about 10 percent of our state’s privately held woodlands.

The "Woods in Your Backyard" webinar series teaches land stewardship through nine live, one-hour, online evening lectures that can be viewed on your home computer. Sessions run from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday nights for nine weeks beginning January 29, 2020. All lectures are recorded and can be viewed later if a live session is missed.

Sponsored by Penn State Extension and the Center for Private Forests, the University of Maryland Extension, DCNR Bureau of Forestry, and the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay: Forests for the Bay Program, the webinar series is designed specifically, but not exclusively, for smaller landscapes. These small lots, whether wooded or not, can provide numerous benefits. By enhancing wooded areas or creating natural areas on your property, you can enjoy wildlife, recreation, aesthetics, improved water quality and reduced energy costs. Owners of even the smallest landscapes can make a positive difference in their environment through planning and implementing simple stewardship practices.

The workshop series introduces the manual, “The Woods in Your Backyard: Learning to Create and Enhance Natural Areas Around Your Home.” All participants will receive the full-color, 108-page publication, a $29 value. This self-directed book will guide you through the process of developing and implementing projects to enhance your land’s natural resources.

Topics covered in the webinars will include the following:
·         Woods and healthy watersheds.
·         Tree and shrub identification.
·         Providing and enhancing wildlife habitat.
·         Forest ecology and soils.
·         Woodlot management techniques.
·         Invasive plant identification and control.
·         Converting open land to meadows and woods.
·         Providing edible fruits and nuts and other ways to diversity your woods.

For more information and to register, visit the Penn State Extension website at or call 877-345-0691. The registration deadline is Saturday, January 18, 2020.


EDITORS: For more information, contact Vinnie Cotrone (570-602-0600, or Dave Jackson (814-355-4897,

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

US-China Trade Update – Hardwood and Forests Products Mentioned

Passing this on from the Hardwood Federation and the PA Forest Products Association. A bit of good news that may make for a merrier Christmas for some this year.

US Trade Ambassador Robert Lighthizer appeared on Fox News this morning and mentioned that hardwoods are part of the trade deal with China. The clip may be viewed here. Hardwood and forest products are mentioned at 1:56 of this clip addressing how other areas of agriculture also classified as manufacturing will be used by the U.S. to get to the $50B/year of agricultural purchases that the President and Administration were pushing for.

Ensuring that hardwoods, and the impact the trade war with China has had on the industry, were considered by the Trump Administration during trade negotiations was a combined effort of many in the industry. This includes the many individual hardwood company leaders who came to Washington to speak directly with members of the Administration and Congress, during Hardwood
Federation events like the Fly-In and on their own. Hardwood companies also wrote, called, and e-mailed their Congressional representatives and the Hardwood Federation Member Association Executives who shared information, encouraged engagement and supported Federation outreach and activity.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

A Unique Value of Forested Watersheds

What's the most important ingredient in beer?  The water.  Maine's incredible craft breweries teamed up to bring awareness about the need to protect this valuable and necessary resource.  The video, produced by the Maine Brewshed Alliance, promotes watershed forestry!  A good video and a great effort! The importance of trees to clean water……for beer!