All posts by Karen

Thanks to all those who hosted 2019 Woodland Owner Short Courses

KWOA appreciates the considerable effort provided by three woodland owners who hosted a 2019 Woodland Owner Short Course on their properties:

Henry Duncan welcomes WOSC participants to his farm. Logan County, 7/20/19.

Henry Duncan, July 20 in Logan County




WOSC participants hear from the pros at Henry Duncan’s farm. Logan County, 7/20/19

Danielle and Jason Hagler, August 10 in Washington County

Jimmie Sizemore, August 24 in Clay County

Jimmie Sizemore introduces WOSC participants to the lay of his land. Photo by Billy Thomas






Jimmie Sizemore (fourth from left) talks with WOSC participants, Clay County, 8/24/19. Photo by Billy Thomas

The WOSC is conducted by the University of Kentucky Department of Forestry and Natural Resources Extension. KWOA is a co-sponsor of these events.

WOSC participants were greeted by a first-of-its-kind KWOA sign at the Sizemore woodland property

Petition to protect the Cedar Grove Wildlife Corridor

Louisville Gas and Electric (LG&E) requested an easement from Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest for the proposed Bullitt County Natural Gas Pipeline. Alternative routes exist that would not destroy conservation lands.

If you’re interested in getting involved, please consider signing a Petition to protect the Cedar Grove Wildlife Corridor. This Corridor is the section of Bernheim property that LG&Eequested easement and deed restrictions for.

Bernheim Under Threat Roadshows

Louisville Gas and Electric (LG&E) requested an easement from Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest for the proposed Bullitt County Natural Gas Pipeline. Alternative routes exist that would not destroy conservation lands.

Bernheim Under Threat Roadshows are dedicated to educating residents in nearby communities about the threats Bernheim faces and how the community can take immediate actions to save the forest.

To see the full list Bernheim Under Threat Roadshow, visit Bernheim’s website at

Fall Forest Fire Hazard Season Is in Effect

An abnormally wet 2018 is playing a role in why conditions could be worse for fires in 2019. The Kentucky Division of Forestry says more vegetation grew in wooded areas as a result of the increased rains, and that will increase the risk for forest fires.

The Division of Forestry is responsible for fighting wildland fires on private lands and enforcing forest fire hazard seasons and other outdoor burning regulations.  During forest fire hazard season, it is illegal to burn between the hours of 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. within 150 feet of any woodland or brushland.

The Fall Forest Fire Hazard Season is Oct. 1 through Dec. 15, 2019

University of Kentucky “deep ripping” methodology increases sapling survival on coal mining sites in WV

mining sites in WV

“Planting a tree is only one step in the process” in rebuilding woodland, says Christopher Barton, a professor of forest hydrology at the Appalachian Center of the University of Kentucky and founder of Green Forests Work.

In the 1980’s West Virginia coal companies compacted the mountainsides of coal mining sites with bulldozers while attempting to plant “desperation species” – grasses with shallow roots and non-native trees – that complied with federal law but did not restore the forest.

Green Forests Work, in collaboration with the U.S. Forest Service, are utilizing a “deep ripping” approach that gives rainwater and tree roots a better chance to push down into the soil. On old mining sites within West Virginia’s Monongahela National Forest where the team has deep-ripped over the last decade, the survival rate of saplings has been around 90%.

Read more….

Older trees remove more carbon from the atmosphere

Helping existing forests grow to their full potential is more beneficial than reforesting areas that were previously logged or growing trees in areas where there were none.

The research paper “Intact Forests in the United States: Proforestation Mitigates Climate Change and Serves the Greatest Good,” published in scientific journal Frontiers in Forests and Global Change on June 11, cites research that found “extending harvest cycles and reducing cutting on public lands had a larger effect than either afforestation or reforestation on increasing carbon stored in forests in the Northwest United States.”

Join the “White Oaks for the Future” Effort!



Environmental stresses and demand for products made from white oak are outpacing the ability of white oak to successfully regenerate and grow into large trees. Renewing our forests using tree improvement to produce the best white oak trees for reforestation has great ecological and economic benefits. The first step in tree improvement is finding good trees in the forest to collect acorns from. We need volunteers to find white oak trees that are producing acorns, collect those acorns, and send them to the University of Kentucky. This is an especially challenging task this year since it looks like the production of white oak acorns is pretty low! If you are interested in helping collect acorns please email




KWOA welcomes new coordinator partnership with KDOW Basin Coordination and Watershed Watch

The Kentucky Division of Water’s Community Outreach and Involvement Division administers two programs that especially benefit woodland owners: Basin Coordination and Watershed Watch.


Meet Your Basin Coordinator

DOW now has a full team of Basin Coordinators excited about collaborating with KWOA members to protect and improve woodland waterways. The basin team programs – core monitoring, lakes monitoring, citizen action and youth stream team – connect organizations like KWOA with the data and resources needed to identify and address water quality challenges.

Basin Coordinators also communicate needs on the ground to the DOW, supporting the division in directing resources to where they are most needed. Kentucky is divided into 7 major river basins, each of which is staffed by a Basin Coordinator.

To find the Basin Coordinator responsible for your area, go to the Division of Water’s Basin Team web page.


Watershed Watch is a statewide citizens monitoring effort to improve and protect water quality by raising community awareness, and by supporting implementation of the goals of the Clean Water Act and other water quality initiatives. The program is dedicated to helping you protect Kentucky’s streams, rivers, lakes and wetlands. The program accomplishes its goals through community education, leadership, action and water quality monitoring projects. Basic stream monitoring includes biological and chemical monitoring as well as lake monitoring, video and photographic monitoring.

Ongoing Work to Protect Bernheim Forest in Bullitt County

From the Kentucky Resources Council August newsletter

The defense of the Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest continues in Bullitt County. KRC’s Environmental and Community Defense team is gearing up its legal defense of Bernheim-owned tracts that are under a double-threat of taking by LG&E and of a future by-pass corridor. It is working alongside additional counsel to protect one of our state’s ecologically diverse  conservation corridors. The proposed pipeline threatens conservation efforts at Bernheim, and is the first known effort of a Kentucky electric utility to interfere with a conservation easement in order to locate an intrastate pipeline, and proposes to run gas service through the easement and across a number of private properties and waterways in order to serve populations other than those across whose property it will impact.

For more information about how this matter has unfolded…

Bernheim Under Threat Roadshow

Representatives from Bernheim will travel Bullitt County and the surrounding area to provide direct education on their current threat. Bernheim’s road show  and schedule is planned for several months.

Contact the Corps of Engineers and Fish & Wildlife

KRC is working hard to represent Bernheim in this ongoing issue, and your voice can make a difference, too. If you’re interested in getting involved, please consider contacting the Corps of Engineers and the Fish and Wildlife Service using the information below. As LG&E seeks approval for a pipeline corridor that its own consultant recommended avoiding, now is the time to demand that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers consider not merely the water crossings and wetland loss, but also the impacts on terrestrial rare and endangered species and public and private lands, and that the Corps demand an individual 404 permit application and a complete terrestrial and aquatic biological assessment along the chosen route, as well as full consideration of alternatives.


Louisville District of the Corps of Engineers
Louisville District Regulatory Division Office, South Branch

Kentucky Field Station of the US Fish and Wildlife Service Office
502-695-0468 |