Forest Conservancy District Board
October 10, 2011 Meeting Minutes
Those present: Ginny Brace, Keith Schoonover, Jim Arnold, Tyson Rose, Tom Anderson, Claude Eans, Karen Gardner, Heather Montgomery, Mike Kay
Keith called the meeting to order and September’s Minutes were approved (The green version.)
Introduction of guests: We had three guests at our meeting. Karen Gardner of the Frederick News Post was there to continue the story she is doing on the Forestry Board. Karen spent a day with Lynn and Mike conducting timber harvest plan reviews and measuring a champion black locust for the Big Tree Program. (We won’t mention the part about walking in circles on the Royer property. Fortunately Lynn was able to get us back on track using some woods lore to determine our direction based on a clump of mushrooms.) Claude Eans mentioned that he has accepted a volunteer position with the American Tree Farm Program as the Western Regional representative for the MD Executive Committee and would like to discuss some details with the Board on how to revitalize this program. Heather Montgomery with Frederick County Division of Watershed Restoration said that among the many hats she wears is being part of the MUCFC Executive committee and she indicated that since this program is partnered with the Forestry Boards and since she has become a resident of Frederick County she would like to become a member of the Board. (Everybody thanked Heather and we gave her an application before she had a chance to change her mind.)
Treasurer’s report: Tom indicated that the economy must be getting better because our monthly interest has increased from $.78 to $1.07.
Logging Site Exams: Mike received four plans scattered around western Frederick County. After some discussion Ginny mentioned that she could join Mike on Tuesday, October 18, 2011 and we will be meeting at Weiss Market at Old Camp Rd and Rt. 40 at 8:00 am.
Tree Farm Program: Claude restated that he was approached by Phil Pannill to serve on the Executive Committee as the western representative of the MD Tree Farm Program. In this capacity Claude would like to meet various Tree Farmers to get to know them and listen to their concerns etc so as to better serve the membership. Claude would also like to reinvigorate the program by distributing Tree Farm signs to Certified Tree Farmers in need of a sign, holding a workshop, and catching up on inspections so that membership reflects qualified Tree Farms. After discussing some of these points with Mike, Claude thought it would be good to hold a workshop on his property in conjunction with a pine plantation thinning that will be conducted by Brian Blickenstaff a local logger. Brian has purchased a mechanical (Feller-buncher) which severs trees and directs the way they fall. This type of device is good for thinning young tree stands because it can cut trees quickly and does very little damage to the residual stand. Now that Brian has this equipment it is a great help for Frederick County landowners who have struggled to get their pine plantations and younger hardwood stands thinned. Claude asked if the Forestry Board would like to partner with him to conduct a workshop on his property when Brian will be present to demonstrate this machine. Board members seemed enthusiastic and we decided to contact Brian to see if he is receptive to the idea and to produce an agenda and distribute the information to Tree Farmers by direct mailings. Mike mentioned that he inquired with the Tree Farm Committee about the potential of getting some SWAG (If you don’t know what this stands for ask Heather.) And Mike has a pretty good supply of signs that he can bring.
Neighborhood Green: Heather indicated that a Small Watershed Grant of $200,000 through the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) has been awarded to the Neighborhood Green program targeted for the Linganore Watershed. These funds will be used for administrative items, landowner contacts, funding workshops, and cost share assistance up to 70% for the installation of practices on the property. To be eligible the property must be less than 10 acres in size. Heather mentioned that the track record that we built up with 2 years of trainings, landowner contacts, and the reforestation of 10 acres without much monetary assistance impressed the Small Watershed grantors. Heather also mentioned that we need to meet to make plans for the implementation of this program. Ginny mentioned that reforestation using seedlings and tree shelters is not always appropriate for small landowners and stated that planting - landscaping using shrubs, meadow, flower gardens etc. would also be worthwhile activities to consider when offering alternatives to turf grass management. After some discussion we concluded that Neighborhood Green is still a work in progress and we need different perspectives on the committee to further refine the program.
Nature Notes: Ginny distributed copies of the Forestry Board pamphlet that she and Tyson put together in time for the Frederick Fair. Heather took a handful and said she will distribute them to the local libraries. Ginny mentioned that she would like to find a contact that could provide real time wildlife inputs like when various bird species are migrating through the area etc. Heather mentioned that she could contact Ammie Weldon of the Potomac Conservancy or Jessica Hunicke with the Frederick County Department of Watershed Restoration to see if they could assist. Ginny said that what she is receiving from Tom, Mike, and herself is good but she doesn’t understand Mike’ fascination with pumpkins.) Tom mentioned that he would like to do a historical article on the role that the great industrialists / thinkers of the time i.e. (Thomas Edison, Harvey Firestone, and Henry Ford etc.) played on helping to promote an industrial / environmental ethic at the turn of the century. Ginny thought that would be a great idea for an article so Tom said he would pursue it.
Web Site: Tyson said that everything is up to date.
Other Business: Mike distributed the Agenda for the Forestry Program designed for Future Harvest on Tuesday, October 25, 2011 at the Steve Thrasher property. Tom and Mike are on the agenda of this program. Tom will talk about the Forestry Board and Mike will talk about Forestry incentive programs and demonstrate how to conduct a point sample to gain valuable information about the condition of a forest. Ginny said that she will be there to help out and Claude and Heather said they might be able to attend.