Frederick County Forestry Board Lecture Series:
Submitted by Jade Bowins,
Catoctin Forest Alliance Intern
At the June 7th Frederick County Forestry Board lecture "Getting Involved in Natural Resources," representatives from a variety of organizations presented information to members of the public attending the series at the C. Burr Artz Library. Jade Bowins, Catoctin Forest Alliance Intern, summarized the event:.
Frederick County Forestry Board
Tom Anderson spoke on behalf of the Frederick County Forestry Board (FCFB). The aim of the FCFB is to promote stewardship, conservation and the sustainable use of the forest’s resources. The FCFB’s efforts apply to both urban and rural areas through education and encouragement of values for sound forest management. They also promote the growth of indigenous trees and are trying to help rid the Frederick County area of dangerous invasive species. The FCFB has accomplished these goals through various workshops, nature notes in the Frederick News Post and partnerships with both government and private organizations. Some of the FCFB’s most important programs include the timber harvest reviews in conservation zones, the Natural Resources Careers Conference for high school students interested in forestry and natural resources and other education programs open to the general public. Starting in 2006 to 2007 the FCFB offered a course called Forestry 101 that offered a series of lectures along with field demonstrations to help educate people that desire to become more familiar with forestry issues and practices. They are also involved in cost sharing program to create riparian (stream side) forest buffers. Two lectures coming up this summer include Explore ”Wood in Art” on July 5th and “Plant Thugs” on August 2nd. To find out more information concerning the upcoming lectures or just about the FCFB in general, please visit their website at FrederickCountyForestryBoard.com.
Catoctin Forest Alliance
Mike West, President of the Catoctin Forest Alliance (CFA) informed the audience about the mission of the Catoctin Forest Alliance; which is to preserve and encourage the health of the Catoctin Mountain forest for the enjoyment of current and future generations. They promote many programs such as Artist in Residence, Trout in the classroom, the First Bloom project and the Spice Bush Natural Trail. If you are interested in the Artist in Residence program please apply prior to the fall or visit the Delaplaine Visual Arts Center where many of the artists’ work is on display. After applying if you are selected you will be allowed to camp in the Catoctin forest for two weeks where you can explore all of your artistic desires. The trout in the classroom program is geared towards middle school students. The CFA distributes 9 different systems to different middle schools in the area with 150-200 eggs each. After about 10 days the eggs hatch and the children must relocate the hatchlings into a tank and care for them until they grow large enough to be released. Then finally the kids host a release party at Owens Creek. Another program they promote along with the Catoctin Mountain Park is the First Bloom Program. This program is also made for children, whom are required to design the garden around the visitor center at Catoctin Mountain Park. What really makes this program appealing is that it is a countrywide competition, and last year the group from Carroll County, MD won! A final and very important program that the CFA is a part of is the Spice Bush Nature Trail. This program is meant to help people that are handicapable and soldiers that have been injured in combat. This program digs up a trail through the Catoctin Forest and places a mold of a combination of wood and glue so that it is wheel chair accessible while also making it a more natural experience. If you wish to learn more about the CFA please visit their website at CatoctinForAll.org.
Monocacy & Catoctin Watershed Alliance
Heather Montgomery, Community Restoration Coordinator, spoke about the importance of the Monocacy-Catoctin Watershed Alliance. The goals of the Monocacy-Catoctin Watershed Alliance are to protect, restore, enjoy, connect, educate and study. They combine the labors of many members in order to protect and restore the natural resources of the Monocacy-Catoctin watersheds. They wish to expand and educate people about the ethics of stewardship, which will in turn protect the County’s agriculture and improve the quality of life of our natural resources so that we can manage future expansion more judiciously. They plan to see healthy streams and rivers with forest buffers so that people can have access to more clean drinking water and to help care for the aquatic and terrestrial life in these water bodies in the future. The watershed alliance was developed by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources with funding from the Environmental Protection Agency. Their areas of focus include Frederick County Maryland, Carroll County Maryland and Adams County Pennsylvania. Some programs that they have completed include the Cloverhill Community Restoration Project, the Tree Growth Field Trial, and the Libertytown Stewards Project. They are currently working on the Lower Monocacy Green Infrastucture Project, the Urban Wetlands Program, the Neighborhood Green program, and many more collaborative community restoration demonstration projects. Their programs include tree planting, developing rain gardens and warm season grass meadows, wetland enhancement, stream monitoring and invasive species control. If you wish to learn more or be a part of any of these projects please visit their site at www.watershed-alliance.com.
Friends of Waterford Park
This group is developing a passive park in Frederick County using only native species in order to improve the area’s wildlife and inform people about the importance and benefits of native plants. On Earth Day this year with the help of many volunteers the Friends of Waterford Park were able to plant 400 trees. They are currently recruiting new members that can help promote the park in any way possible. Dues are $10 for individuals and $25 for a household. Waterford Park can be found between Baughman’s Lane and Route 15 and includes 9.5 acres of forest and 8.5 acres of field. They write seasonal newsletters, which can be found online along with more information about the park at FriendsOfWaterfordPark.org.
American Tree Farm System
The moderator of the June 7th lecture, Claude Eans, used his time to discuss the American Tree Farm System. The American Tree Farm System is a system of Tree Farmers and family forest advocates that have made a vow to fight for policies that guarantee family forest owners have the tools they need to keep their forests healthy and fruitful. One policy that they are fighting for is the secure a permanent fix to the estate tax. On Saturday June 16 they will be traveling to Shadowlawn Farms for a field day. Shadowlawn Farms is a local Certified Tree Farm. Every year they also host a national tree farmer convention to meet tree farmers across the nation and to give out awards to outstanding tree farmers. This year’s convention will be held in Jacksonville, Florida from Thursday June 14th until Saturday June 16th. They also write a Tree Farmer Magazine, which you can subscribe to online along with finding how to become a member and other important information at TreeFarmSystem.org.
Maryland Forestry Boards
The purpose of the Maryland Forestry Boards is to aid the Maryland Forest Service, help ensure the supply of wood fiber goods through scientific forest management and restore the Chesapeake Bay. While also endorsing stewardship, conservation and sustainable use of Maryland’s forest resources, and informing the public about the profit of a well cared for forest. The members of the Board work with local foresters to advise them and help assist many statewide programs. They are also required by law to review and pass all timber harvest plans in the Chesapeake Bay Critical Area. In addition, they hold a Natural Resource Careers Camp for high school students across Maryland. This is a weeklong camp in Garrett County to help educate kids that are interested in studying natural resources in college and achieving a career in this area as well. This partnership with Alleghany College of Maryland, and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources-Forest Service offers high school students a chance to learn from industry professionals and build up contacts that could lead to future employment and careers in natural resources. If you are interested in any of the Maryland Forestry Boards’ programs please visit their website at MarylandForestryBoards.org.