MyLandPlan.org – map, plan and track your Indiana land
By Jon Marshall
To help make it easier and more fun for woodland owners to develop management plans, the American Forest Foundation and Mishawaka, Indiana-based DJ Case & Associates developed MyLandPlan.org. More than 6,000 woodland owners have taken advantage of the tool so far.
MyLandPlan.org is an easy-to-use online application that can help you explore what you want to do with your land and track progress toward your goals.
The most popular feature on MyLandPlan.org is interactive mapping. After you have plotted your property boundaries using an intuitive drawing interface, you can map the various features of your property from a palette of drawing tools. Plot out stands of trees, crops, trails, food plots – any current feature or future condition you want to plan for.
Identify Goals and Plan Activities
MyLandPlan.org is structured around a very basic premise:
What do you want to do with your land?
• Enjoy it
• Protect it
• Make it healthy
• Profit from it
• Pass it on
Based on how you answer this question, the application helps you identify goals and plan activities tailored to your land and your individual interests.
If you primarily want to enjoy your land, the application presents goals, activities and information for recreational pursuits like deer hunting, hiking and wildlife watching.
If are driven by creating a healthy landscape, MyLandPlan.org guides you toward information about things like preventing invasive species and restoration of native plants. And if you want to profit from your land, the application offers ideas for improving your long term investment.
Plan and Track Tasks
Create a record of the work you do on your land and/or set up reminders so that you don’t forget to accomplish tasks you want to complete. If you need to remember to order seedlings in the fall, set a reminder and MyLandPlan.org will notify you when the time is right. Keep an ongoing record of the tasks you complete for you and the rest of your family.
Since managing your land is not just about work, MyLandPlan.org provides a journal to record your personal experiences and photos. Use it to record wildlife sightings, bloom times, weather events or memorable outings with family and friends.
Tell Your Land’s Story
Record the history of your land for yourself and for your heirs. MyLandPlan.org features a section for writing down the unique story of how your land came into your family and how it has changed over time. Upload photos past and present.
Locate and Consult with Pros
Use MyLandPlan.org to locate a professional forester or wildlife biologist in your area. If you find a professional you want to work with, you can submit your plan (your selected goals and activities) directly to the pro to jumpstart the consultation process.
(If you are a forester or wildlife biologist, you may submit your profile information to MyLandPlan.org so that woodland owners can find you. Contact Caroline Kuebler at CKuebler@forestfoundation.org to find out how).
Find Local Resources
Based on where your property is located, MyLandPlan.org offers up specific local resources that are helpful to woodland owners.
Get Helpful Advice
Tapping into a large network of forestry and natural resource professionals, MyLandPlan.org features a vast library of information on topics such as:
• Recreational use: Hunting, Wildlife Watching
• Establishing your family’s connection with the land
• Pests and Weeds
• Soil and Water Conservation
• Snags, Logs, and Brushpiles
• Hunting Leases
• Financial Assistance Programs
• Managing a Timber Harvest
• Certifying Your Sustainable Timber
• Conservation Agreements
An “Ask a Forester” forum allows woodland owners to submit questions and consulting foresters to offer advice.
Start Your Land Plan
Plan to be among the best woodland stewards in Indiana. Create a secure account at MyLandPlan.org/signup. If you have questions about My Land Plan, please contact the American Forest Foundation at firstname.lastname@example.org.
John Marshall is the Media Arts and Sciences Director for DJ Case & Associates. Earlier in his career, Jon supervised public relations and education functions for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.