tree farm.gif (32910 bytes)Who runs the Tree Farm program

Tree Farm is truly a local enterprise, run by volunteers from your own state and community. State Tree Farm committees bring foresters from industry, consultants, and government together with experienced Tree Farmers to plan and administer the Tree Farm program in each state. Often, your state forestry association will provide administrative support.

While each Tree Farm program is self-governing, all work under guidelines developed by Tree Farm's National Operating Committee. Most members of the National Operating Committee are Tree Farmers and Tree Farm volunteers from around the nation. They work with representatives of industry and state forestry organizations to set overall policy and assure that the Tree Farm program meets the real needs of forest landowners.


The benefits of belonging


Membership in a network off professionals and fellow landowners who share your commitment to sound, sustainable forestry.

Invitation to seminars, field days, and workshops that can help you learn how best to achieve the goals you've set for your Tree Farm.

An annual convention where you can meet, share experiences and enjoy the fellowship of Tree Farmers from all over the nation.

A free first-year subscription to Tree Farmer: The Practical Guide to Sustainable Forestry. It's the only national magazine specially designed for forest landowners-full of articles with easy-to-use information, product reviews and plans you can put to work right away on your Tree Farm.

Opportunities, training and tools that will help you educate others about the benefits of excellent forestry-whether it's schoolchildren visiting your Tree Farm, other landowners who want to know more about management, or lawmakers looking to regulate forestry or set your Tree Farm taxes.

An initial inspection of your Tree Farm by a professional forester can help you meet Tree Farm System standards.


Tending America's Forests


The American Tree Farm System is a nationwide community of more than 70,000 individuals and families joined by their desire for excellence in forest stewardship. They share a unique commitment: to protect watersheds and wildlife habitat, to conserve soil and provide recreation for their neighbors and, at the same time, to produce the wood America needs to grow.


More than 58 percent of the productive forests in America are owned by ordinary citizens-not by government or big industry. These 9.9 million forest owners hold the key to just what kind of forests future generations of Americans will enjoy.

Getting started

Sound, sustainable forestry begins with determining your objectives: deciding what you have on your lands and developing a forest management plan that meets your needs. A professional forester can answer your questions and help you develop your management plan.

To qualify for Tree Farm certification, woodlots must be....ten acres or more; under management, with an implemented plan that accounts for water quality, wildlife habitat, and soil conservation as well as production of forest products; protected from fire, insects, disease and destructive grazing.

If you meet these criteria, a free inspection of your woodlands can be arranged through your State Tree Farm Committee. if you're just discovering the benefits of forest management and haven't yet met the qualifications for full Tree Farm certification, you may be eligible to become a Pioneer Tree Farmer.

Roots of sustainable forestry

Pride. Tree Farmers receive a certificate and a sign that marks their land as a place where excellent forestry is practiced. Just as important, they share the satisfaction that comes from managing their land to the highest standards of good stewardship-and knowing that this commitment has been recognized by their peers. Each year, Tree Farmers from around the country compete for the honor of being named state, regional, or national Tree Farmer of the Year.


Profit. Being a Tree Farmer often means you'll grow and harvest more timber, and earn more income than you might have thought possible. But along with these rewards will come healthier forests, cleaner water and better habitat for wildlife-the other rewards that landowners seek through investing in sound, sustainable forestry.


Pleasure. Many people are drawn to Tree Farm simply because they enjoy being in the woods. Some look forward to the hard work of planting and tending. Others take their pleasure in recreation or the natural beauty of their forests.

A green legacy

That's the sentiment that motivates all the Tree Farmers and volunteers who work under the Tree Farm sign. To qualify as a Tree Farmer, landowners generally manage at least 10 acres of forest land. They must prepare a written plan that details their management objectives and shows how they will provide for wildlife, recreation, water and soil conservation while producing timber. After their land is inspected by one of the 9,000 foresters who volunteer time to the American Tree Farm System; landowners are certified and earn the right to erect the Tree Farm sign. Every five years thereafter, Tree Farms are reinspected to assure that landowners continue to meet the System's rigorous forestry certification criteria.


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