A forest is more than trees

Trees take a long time to grow, so today's decisions have long-term impacts on forests and water quality. Forest*A*Syst helps you plan what you want your forest and wooded acreage to be and set out the steps you need to take to get there.

Your decisions are influenced by many things, including your family situation, income needs, philosophy about land ownership and the environment. You also have to consider your resources, skills, time constraints and applicable regulations in your location. Then you can sit down with your professional forester to create a flexible plan that you and your heirs can follow to reach your goals for your forest, while protecting the quality of water and the environment.

Where do I begin?

With your forester, you need to evaluate your property's physical attributes and your management activities and the steps you can take to safeguard the environment (Best Management Practices). This lets you find out where your starting point is.

Questions you need to answer are:

  1. Do you wish to hunt or observe wildlife in your forest?
  2. Do you want your forest to produce income?
  3. Will you or others use the forest for recreation?
  4. Is the beauty of your forest important to you?

This will assist you in making the choices in balancing your desires for managing your forest. Wanting income through timber production need not be in conflict with environmental concerns. By having a flexible plan, it is possible to compatibly link choices such as wildlife food and habitat with timber production.

The health of your forest may depend on active forest management. It is a misconception that a healthy forest is always an untouched forest. A forest management plan is the road map to successful long-term management of your forest.