Announcing Working with Your Woodland Series

Waldo County Small Scale Forest Stewardship Field Tours

Join us for a fun and practical series that will offer many ideas for enhancing and caring for your woodland. Waldo County Soil and Water Conservation District and Maine Forest Service are co-sponsoring a series of short field tours to highlight forest stewardship and conservation practices of private landowners, beginning in July. Many landowners have quietly been implementing a wide variety of careful, long-term management activities and techniques for years, to enhance their woodlands’ productivity, habitat, and beauty for decades to come. Some activities require considerable labor and resources, but others do not. These short tours are open to landowners, foresters, loggers, and others interested in the stewardship of small woodlands. The tours will provide a brief, two-hour introduction to the landowners and their goals, often with the forester and/or harvester working with the landowner. They will offer participants a chance to see some of the interesting work they have done, ask questions, and gather ideas for how to manage their own woods.

The first 3 tours are scheduled over the summer and early fall (each season we will offer more workshops in this ongoing series) beginning on Thursday, July 27th:

Thursday, July 27, 3-5 p.m. – Villageside Farm, Freedom. Villageside Farm owners Prentice Grassi and Polly Shyka have for several years undertaken innovative small scale thinning projects, improvement cuts, wildlife habitat measures, and access improvements on the farm woodlot. Forester Rob Nelson will describe at first hand the purpose, planning, and implementation of several projects. Meet at Villageside Farm, route 137 (1/4 mile west of Freedom village).

Thursday, August 24, 3-5 p.m.Jon Robbins Woodlot, Searsmont. Landowner, licensed forester and professional logger Jon Robbins will guide us through his approach to light, commercial thinning, particularly of white pine stands, which he has repeated multiple times over many years. We’ll also look at treatments he’s initiated in younger stands. The results of Jon’s careful, skilled work will provide food for further discussion of planning, silviculture, growth, equipment, and markets for various products. Meet at the property on Moody Mountain Road, approx. 0.7 miles east of the intersection with route 131.

Thursday, September 28, 3-5 p.m.Johnson Farm, Thorndike. Landowners Travis and Katie Johnson will talk about management of their 400-acre farm in family ownership since the 1700s. Travis will describe his computerized timber inventory tracking system which increases his ability to track the value of his trees. He’ll also display the Wallenstein log trailer which enables him to adjust his harvest approach and respond to specialized forest product markets. Meet at Johnson Farm at 945 East Thorndike Road (changes from Works Road), approx. 2.5 miles west of Route 7 (Valley Road), just over the Thorndike/Jackson town line.

The tours are free and open to the public. They will involve walking in the woods and will occur rain or shine, so please dress for field conditions. Parking is limited so please consider carpooling if you can. For more information contact Aleta McKeage, Technical Director of Waldo County Soil and Water Conservation District at 855-884-2284,  aleta.waldosoilandwater@gmail.com, or Morten Moesswilde, Midcoast District Forester with the Maine Forest Service, at 207-441-2895.