Announcing an editorial transition at MyMinnesotaWoods

by Eli Sagor After over seven years managing and editing MyMinnesotaWoods, I am excited to announce a transition. Matt Russell, a new Extension Specialist and Assistant Professor in the U’s Department of Forest Resources, takes over those roles this month. MyMinnesotaWoods has always been special to me. From the beginning, as we hatched the idea for a new website to […]

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Ecological silviculture in mixed stands: June 2013 workshop review

By Eli Sagor, UMN Extension How do land managers “read the land” well enough to make long term decisions about the future composition and growth of their woods?  One important tool is ecological classification systems. ECS is a framework to identify native plant communities early on, when planning treatments to harvest mature trees and make decisions about what to favor […]

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Research review: Tradeoffs between mitigation and adaptation approaches

Forests are complex systems, both because of their many parts and processes and because of the diverse human values governing their use.  Sound forest management approaches recognize this complexity and balance multiple objectives including clean water, wildlife habitat, recreational uses, timber production,  and scenic beauty, based on landowner objectives. In recent years, two new objectives have emerged as priorities:  mitigation […]

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Dealing with storm-damaged trees and woods

Windstorms can cause serious damage and destruction in Minnesota forests.  The storms in early July 2012 caused extensive damage in both urban forests and rural forests and woodlots.  We’ve pulled together some resources that may be of assistance to homeowners and landowners as they clean up after the storm and plan for what’s next in their woods and yards. Research […]

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Know thy woods: On the value of monitoring

You may have noticed a lot of talk on MyMinnesotaWoods about forest health and phenology. There’s a common theme and a good reason for this: There are a lot of good reasons to monitor your woods through the weeks, months, years, and even decades: 1. Trees and woodland stands are constantly changing. Trees have to grow to live, and big […]

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Climate and Minnesota’s woodlands: Reflections from a February 2012 event

What can foresters and landowners do to maintain the health and productivity of the state’s woodlands during a period of rapid change and uncertain future conditions? In February 2012, the University of Minnesota’s Sustainable Forests Education Cooperative (SFEC) convened researchers and natural resource professionals to answer this question. This article offers a short summary of the presentations and ideas discussed […]

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MN DNR cuts, reorganizes private forest management program

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Division of Forestry recently announced big changes to its Private Forest Management (PFM) program.  The program is facing some major reductions.  Landowners will notice the changes. The PFM program’s annual budget was cut by 75% from $2 million to $500,000.  While PFM forester capacity will not drop by quite that much, it will be reduced […]

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Intermediate stand treatments: Logger perspectives (videos)

In recent years, intermediate stand treatments (ISTs) have emerged as one of the most promising strategies to increase the health and productivity of Minnesota’s forests.  ISTs can improve stand growth rates, produce big trees and stand structures typical of old-growth conditions more quickly, reduce forest health threats, and greatly increase economic returns. So what are ISTs?  They include any treatment […]

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