A Great Forest Deserves a Great Plan

Few things are more frustrating than seeing something of great value become damaged, diminished or lost for good for no other reason than the lack of a plan. Let’s face it, we’ve all taken on projects in our lives that might have gone better if we would have taken a little more time to think the whole thing through before we ever got started. Good planning is always a good strategy.

Here at the Holmes Soil and Water Conservation district we typically watch folks work through plans on a yearly schedule. Because our area is home to a great number of crop and livestock farmers it only stands to reason that plans are generally tuned to seasons and plotted in years.  We can think of those annual plans as pages to be turned in the long-term overall plan of the farm.

Our area produces another type of crop, however, that requires planning which spans decades and even lifetimes—Forest Products. I don’t know a soul who can’t find something to appreciate about a forested lot, valley or hillside. Not many folks, however, realize that the beauty, viability and productivity of that forest depends almost entirely on good forest management practices—and that begins with good planning.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Forestry has a number of wonderful resources available for landowners. Whether your forest is a small hunting plot or a large tract covering half the township, the Division of Forestry can help you manage your property to meet your goals. The first step toward a well-managed forest it a well thought out plan and to that end the Division of Forestry has a great introductory website help you get started.

Remember: Good planning is always a good strategy!   

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John Lorson came to Holmes SWCD after having left a career in higher education quite literally for greener pastures. He holds a BS in Biology from The University of Akron where he later worked for ten years, most recently as coordinator of the Wayne College Holmes campus. John also spent 15 years as an engineering technician with the city of Orrville and still serves in his hometown as a city council representative. Local residents may recognize John from his weekly humor column in The Daily Record and Shopper News—a collaboration with his wife, Kristin that is now in its 20th year. He is thrilled to be working as a technician in the field of conservation—a great crossroad of his education and experience. Reach John with your conservation concerns at 330-674-2811 or email jlorson@co.holmes.oh.us