Two Master Woodland Owner classes concluded this spring, providing more engaged woodland owners across Minnesota. The Laurentian class emphasized managing woodlands for forest health and wildlife habitat. The North Shore class emphasized restoration of long lived conifers along the North Shore of Lake Superior.
The Laurentian class comprised 31 woodland owners that collectively own over 2,400 acres of woodland. The Laurentian area is an important region, serving as a transitional forest type between the boreal forest to the north and the broadleaf deciduous forest to the south. The course highlighted the risk of fire to the landscape and how private woodland owners can improve their woodlands for wildlife habitat.
The Laurentian class concluded in March 2018 with a tour of Mike Sullivan's property, a woodland owner outside Hibbing, MN. Mike showed the class his stunning woodland of yellow birch and northern white cedar, and discussed developing trails in his woodland.
The North Shore class comprised 25 woodland owners that collectively own over 400 acres of woodland. Working with Sugarloaf: The North Shore Forest Stewardship Association, the course highlighted the challenges that woodland owners have in regenerating trees along the Shore. Protecting seedlings from deer and establishing long-lived conifers were topics that came up time and time again.
The North Shore class concluded in June 2018 with a tour of multiple properties. At it's conclusion, Master Woodland Owners planted several trees including northern white cedar, tamarack, and eastern white pine in memory of Steve Wilmot. And of course, the seedlings were protected from deer by putting up fences.
Hats off to the new Master Woodland Owners!