Category Archives: News

News about Kentucky Woodlands and their owners

Kentucky Senator Robby Mills connects counties, clean water and forests

“We have to teach the next generation how to work.” Kentucky Senator Robby Mills advised attendees at KWOA’s 2019 annual meeting with the additional comment that government should be about resolving problems and filling gaps.

Senator Mills, who is Vice Chair of the Senate Natural Resources and Energy Committee, launched into the meeting’s theme of Clean Water and Forest Management by noting the lack of investment in water and waste water infrastructure. He said Martin County loses 64% of its treated water between the water treatment plant and homes because of leaks.

Mills recognized the role of trees as natural barriers to sediment and water run-off as well as water purifiers. He highlighted the Audubon Wetlands in Henderson County.

 

 

It consists of 649 acres that was added to the 724-acre John James Audubon State Park.  Over 400 acres have been reforested there.

State of the Watersheds

Amanda Gumbert, UK Extension, Water Quality, spoke to members about the monitoring system in place for Kentucky’s watersheds.

Amanda Gumbert, UK Extension Water Quality instructor, discusses habitat and riparian issues with participants. Photo by Ward Wilson, Kentucky Water Alliance

Members joined Amanda streamside to observe and draw their concept of a typical riparian habitat.

If it’s on the ground, it’s in our water.

.01% of earth’s water is drinking water.

 

 

 

 

Kentucky has seven river basins and 90,000 miles of rivers and streams. Gumbert introduced members to the Kentucky Water Health Portal.

Kentucky Water Health Portal

Streams and lakes all have designated uses and are coded in the portal as to which of those uses they support, such as aquatic life, swimming, fishing or drinking.

Gumbert left attendees with three to-do items:

  1. Learn about your watershed/stream.
  2. Develop and implement a Kentucky Agriculture Water Quality Plan [hot link]
  3. Enjoy Kentucky’s water resources.
Participants in streamside habitat and riparian issues proudly display their drawing of a typical meandering stream. Photo by Greg Kuhns

Management of the Pennyrile State Forest

Jim Bryan, Kentucky Division of Forestry, provided some background on Pennyrile State Forest. The state owns and manages ten forests. The state bought these forests between 1932 and 1939, resettling the people who lived there. Pennyrile Park opened in 1937.

In 1930, as part of the Land Use and Resettlement Program, the Division of Forestry acquired leases on land in Christian, Hopkins and Caldwell counties, which became the Pennyrile State Forest. It now includes 14,648 acres of forest. These leases were sustained until 1954, when the property was deeded (with certain reservations) by the U.S. government to the Commonwealth.

An invasion by pine beetles prompted clear-cutting of conifers in the 1970’s and conversion to hardwoods. However, Virginia pines soon re-established in the forest. A program of helicopter spraying and “hack and squirt” successfully removed the pines. Money from timber harvests goes to KDF.

KWOA annual meeting tests the waters at Pennyrile state forest and park

With clean water and forest management as its theme, the 2019 KWOA annual meeting explored the many ways in which forests impact water quality and quantity. Forestry and water quality professionals conducted presentations and streamside demonstrations on the ways in which the Pennyrile forest contributes to the excellent quality water supply of the park’s lake,

Amanda Gumbert, UK Extension Water Quality instructor, discusses habitat and riparian issues with participants. Photo by Ward Wilson, Kentucky Water Alliance

how citizens can participate in testing for water quality in their watersheds and efforts to strengthen the propagation of tree species such as white oak and American chestnut.

Not all of the expertise was at the podium. Attendees exhibited their depth and range of expertise by contributing concepts, experiences and challenges to consider additional perspectives in the complex relationships among the natural and human environments.

KWOA President Doug McLaren alerted members to the need to cultivate new champions for sustainable forests. We need to share what we’ve learned with our neighbors and communities. Members noted many additional sectors with which woodland interests intersect such as beekeepers, hunters, mushroom growers, maple syrup producers and the wives/widows/daughters of timber property owners.

KWOA has already launched a vigorous initiative to improve its internal coordination and communication while bringing onboard new faces and perspectives. As it enters its 25th year the association has a great opportunity to “pave the way forward” for the next generation of woodlands and the owners who care so much about them.

State of the Watersheds – Amanda Gumbert, UK Extension, Water Quality

 .01% of earth’s water is drinking water.

If it’s on the ground, it’s in our water.

Kentucky has seven river basins and 90,000 miles of rivers and streams.

Gumbert introduced members to the Kentucky Water Health Portal.

Streams and lakes all have designated uses and are coded in the portal as to which of those uses they support, such as aquatic life, swimming, fishing or drinking.

Gumbert left attendees with three to-do items:

  1. Learn about your watershed/stream.
  2. Develop and implement a Kentucky Agriculture Water Quality Plan [hot link]
  3. Enjoy Kentucky’s water resources.

Members joined Amanda streamside to observe and draw their concept of a typical riparian habitat.

Participants in streamside habitat and riparian issues proudly display their drawing of a typical meandering stream. Photo by Greg Kuhns

 

Kentucky Woodland Owners Association hosted their 25th Annual Meeting at Pennyrile Forest State Park

 

FOR IMMEDATE RELEASE

Contact: Doug McLaren

dmclaren@uky.edu

(859) 881.8583

 

Kentucky Woodland Owners Gather for Annual Meeting

Kentucky Woodland Owners Association hosted their 25th Annual Meeting at Pennyrile Forest State Park

The Kentucky Woodland Owners Association (KWOA) members, University of Kentucky Department of Forestry and Natural Resources staff and students, industry representatives and other state and local officials gathered for the 2019 KWOA Annual Meeting at Pennyrile Forest State Park on March 26-27.

Clean water and forest management was the theme for this year’s congregation of more than 50 attendees. With a presentation from Jim Bryon, Kentucky Division of Forestry, as well as, hands-on learning with the University of Kentucky Extension Service’s Dr. Amanda Gumbert and Sarah Yount, attendees learned about habitat and riparian issues, streams, and timber harvesting. The conference also heard updates from Dr. Gregory Kuhns, MD about the Water Watch in Kentucky, Rick Caldwell with the American Chestnut Foundation, and Warren Beeler with the Governor’s Office of Agricultural Policy.

“Members of the KWOA enjoy sharing their passion of their woodlands. Kentucky’s land base is half forested, some of the world’s most valuable hardwoods. Woodland owners have a strong desire to see the land continue in their family as a legacy – where all the generations of family – present and future -benefit from the various values of the resource, water, timber, wildlife, recreation, and so many more. Woodland owners are one of the few communities within natural resources that actually grow a legacy that benefits individuals today as well tomorrow”, said Doug McLaren, president of KWOA.

In addition to educational opportunities, the KWO(F)oundation presented UK Department of Forestry and Natural Resources senior, Sarah Hays with their $1000 scholarship at the awards dinner on Tuesday night. This award is given to a UK Forestry and Natural Resource senior annually. The award is granted on the basis of leadership potential, connection with the forest community and insight for the forest profession.

The 2019 Service Forester’s Award was presented to Rick Harrel from the Kentucky Division of Forestry’s Western Region for his dedicated and enthusiastic service to promoting proper forest management to all his woodland land owners. The keynote speaker for the dinner was State Senator Robbie Mills, who addressed the economic opportunity and impact of forested land in Kentucky.

A “nugget” of information that many attendees mentioned at the end of the field day of the water quality and forest management demonstrations was, “…..forest management and water quality are directly related. By following proper management guidelines the water quality downstream is better maintained.”, said Doug McLaren.

For more information on KWOA, please contact Doug McLaren at (859) 881.8583 or dmclaren@uky.edu or visit their webpage at https://kwoa.net

Board meeting highlights – 2/14/19

Woodland Assessment: The Kentucky Farm Bureau will participate in a meeting with the Revenue Cabinet in an effort to correct inequities in the current methods used to assess woodlands. Certification would be the proposed requirement to be used as evidence of management. The belief is that changes in assessment methods could be made within existing legislation and regulations, and only would require approval of the Revenue Cabinet. Cooperation by the Kentucky PVA Association would be important in obtaining approval for these changes. Plans are being made for a meeting to advance these efforts.

New KWOA Logo and apparel: A new logo has been approved.

2019 logo B&W

Apparel and other items with the KWOA logo can be purchased online through the Western Heritage Store.

Governor’s Office of Agricultural Policy: KWOA is moving is taking steps to qualify for GOAP programs. Dr. Dan Kahl of UK Community Leadership and Development will facilitate the May 5, 2019 board meeting to help sort out the issues. That meeting will likely convene in Lexington.

Health Task Force: Don Girton indicated that the Heath Task Force has been re-vitalized. Dr. Ellen Crocker of UK is the point person. In addition, the efforts to obtain compensation for Emerald Ash Borer losses are still under way.

Political Issues: Senator Rand Paul’s proposed amendments to the Natural Resources Management Act (S.47) would authorize the construction of recreational facilities on federal government waterways feeding into Lake Cumberland, and the sale of land along U.S. 27 in the Daniel Boone National Forest for the purpose of development.

USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service: Jared Calvert indicated that $15MM in EQUIP funding has been approved for 2019, $1.5MM of which is allocated to forestry.

Kentucky Forest Industries Association: The American Tree Farm System National Leadership Conference will be held in Louisville February 26-28.

Kentucky Division of Forestry: There will be a tree planting event in Whitley County March 28-30.

FULL BOARD MEETING MINUTES

Next board meetings:

March 27 at the annual meeting

May 9 in Lexington; details forthcoming

August 8, 2019

November 14, 2019

Tune in to weekly radio broadcast for woodland owners

From the Woods Kentucky is a weekly radio show broadcast by the University of Kentucky Department of Forestry and Natural Resources on WRFL 88.1 FM Lexington. The show airs during summer 2019 on Thursdays from 10 – 11A on 88.1 FM in Lexington.

From the Woods Kentucky - Summer 2019

Recordings of From the Woods Kentucky are archived for listening at your convenience. Prior topics include firewood, woodlands owners, deer, watersheds, citizen science and many more.

UK Forestry and Natural Resources Extension Receives National Award

Dec. 18, 2018 – Lexington, KY (University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment)

The University of Kentucky Forestry and Natural Resources Cooperative Extension team recently won the Comprehensive Family Forests Education Award presented by the National Woodland Owners Association and the National Association of University Forest Resources Programs.

This is the second time the team has won this national award, which is presented to an educational institution that has delivered the most effective education program benefiting family forest owners over the past five years.

University of Kentucky Forestry and Natural Resources Cooperative Extension team recently won the Comprehensive Family Forests Education Award. Photo credit: Laura Lhotka, UK Forestry

A family forest education program is a combination of educational materials, media, courses, workshops, events and/or electronic media, including applied research that supports those efforts. The award recognizes effective programs that address any or all aspects of forest resources management including silviculture, forest health, harvesting, forest and estate planning, business management and marketing.

 

Jeff Stringer, chair of the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources in the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, accepted the award on the team’s behalf.

“Forests comprise 50 percent of Kentucky, and 78 percent of the 12 million acres of forest is family owned. It is vital that these family forest owners are provided with information and education to help them make wise decisions to enhance the forest for their benefit and ultimately for the benefit of all Kentuckians,” he said. “I am proud of the tireless work conducted by extension professionals in the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources. This national award highlights the quality and effectiveness of their program.”

Information about the programs and resources UK Cooperative Extension offers for Kentucky woodland owners is available online at forestry.ca.uky.edu/extension-home.