Forests play a critical role in keeping water clean by absorbing and filtering water, preventing erosion through soil stabilization, and allowing for groundwater recharge. Forests also provide important and sustainable social, recreational, and economic benefits for landowners and the general public.
Managing private woodlands can be a challenging and sometimes overwhelming task. The options are endless, and the results of poor management decisions can take decades to heal. Luckily, there are many opportunities for landowners to get technical assistance on managing their woodlands.
Currently the SWCD does not have the capacity of offer technical assistance for private woodland management. However, we are currently working on building our skills to include Forest Stewardship Planning. Forest stewardship plans are an excellent staring poring for any forested-land owner interested in learning more about their resources and caring for the future of Minnesota forests. A written plan includes an inventory of your forest, sets long-term goals with possible funding for activities such as tree planting, timber stand thinning, timber harvesting, improving wildlife habitat, or creating a low-impact hiking trail. We are also actively pursuing dedicated funding from the Clean Water Act to offer Forested Conservation Easements in the Rum River Watershed.
So what if you need help with Private Forest Management?
If you are an Agricultural Producer, you may be eligible for assistance from the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS). Contact Debra Hermel, NRCS District Conservationist Team Lead @ 763-689-3353 ext. 118
Until we are able to offer technical assistance, you will find help from the folks below:
Cambridge Area Forestry Office: Jeff Wilder (763) 284-7205
Certified Arborists/Approved Forest Stewardship Plan Preparers https://extension.umn.edu/natural-resources/woodland-stewardship
MN DNR Forest Health https://www.dnr.state.mn.us/treecare/forest_health/index.html
Do you have questions about putting your forested land into a carbon market? There are resources that can help.
The UMN Extension has a list of Questions to ask your forester about carbon markets
The Minnesota DNR also has a utilization and marketing program meant to help Minnesota's wood-based economy. You can learn mroe about it here: Utilization and Marketing Program