Skip to main content

Florida Land Steward Update, May 7, 2021

FOREST CARBON MARKETS ARE ON THE RISE

Opportunities are emerging for landowners to be paid for some of the environmental services their forests provide. Forest carbon markets are now active in this region. To help private landowners and our forestry and natural resource partners navigate the emerging world of forest carbon initiatives, programs, and opportunities, we are beginning a new “Forest Carbon Bulletin”. See the inaugural Forest Carbon Bulletin here.

Thanks to those who were able to join us last week (May 6) for our Florida Land Steward webinar on SilviaTerra’s forest carbon market opportunity. The recording of that Forest Carbon Webinar with SilviaTerra is available here. All slides, materials, links, and recordings of this and all our FLS webinars are available here.

GET READY FOR HURRICANE SEASON

Hurricane season begins June 1. There are steps you can take to get you, your family, and your property ready for the next storm. Our Florida Land Steward webinar series on hurricane preparation and recovery has begun. The first webinar on building a resilient operation is available on demand: Hurricane Preparation and Recovery Webinar: Building a Resilient Operation (recorded April 15). Recordings, presentation slides, and other materials with this and all FL Land Steward Program webinars can be found here.

Join us on June 3 for a webinar on Preparing for the Storm and on August 26 for a webinar on Steps to Recovery

2021-2025 AMERICAN TREE FARM SYSTEM (ATFS) STANDARDS OF SUSTAINABILITY

The new ATFS Standards of Sustainability will be fully adopted on January 1, 2022. Here’s what you need to know in your efforts to achieve certification in the American Tree Farm System or maintain your certification. Most of the changes in the new standards are minor and include clarification, guidance, and additional resources to help forest landowners. However, a change in Standard 4 adds the additional requirement of pesticide documentation to meet the requirements of forest certification. Herbicides are in the pesticide category. During the transitional period to the new Standards, if a landowner has not retained this information, they should work with their forester to develop records based on the information they have available (i.e., firsthand knowledge of what, when, why a pesticide was applied). Read the latest on the 2021-2025 American Tree Farm Standards of Sustainability and download a helpful plan addendum here: https://www.treefarmsystem.org/standards-review

If you have questions regarding Tree Farm certification, please contact your local Tree Farm Inspector. Find your Florida Tree Farm Program District Representative at: https://www.treefarmsystem.org/about-fl.

Get some helpful tips on pesticide recordkeeping

Keeping good records of all management activities is helpful for many reasons. For guidance on pesticide recordkeeping and the many benefits of keeping good records, watch the recording of our webinar on Pesticide Recordkeeping.  

PRESCRIBED BURN ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE FROM ATTACK-ONE FIRE MANAGEMENT SERVICES, TALL TIMBERS RESEARCH STATION, AND ALACHUA CONSERVATION TRUST

These organizations are available to meet onsite with landowners to discuss their goals and assist with prescribed burn prescription and implementation:

Attack-One Fire Management Services is grant-funded to assist landowners with current NRCS contracts with prescribed fire planning and implementation throughout Florida and Georgia. We can also assist landowners who have former NRCS contracts with prescribed fire consultation, planning and implementation with active Gopher Tortoise habitat present. For more information email Kevin Carter, kevin@attack-one.com or call (850) 926-6534

Tall Timbers Research Station is funded by a Longleaf Legacy Landscape project to provide fire consultation, planning, and implementation to private landowners in the Florida Panhandle from Pensacola to Lake City and in west Georgia as far north as the Chattahoochee Fall Line (Columbus, GA). Contact Jeremiah Cates, jcates@talltimbers.org, (850) 381-8707. Also see their web page for more details: Private Lands Prescribed Fire Project – Tall Timbers

Alachua Conservation Trust has a prescribed fire specialist available to assist private landowners with burn planning, including that associated with NRCS contacts, in Alachua, Putnam, Marion, Levy, Bradford, Clay and portions of Flagler, Volusia, Lake, Sumter, and Citrus Counties. Contact Barry Coulliette at act.barryc@gmail.com, 904-838-8591. Barry is also the Coordinator for the North Florida Prescribed Burn Association.

HELP FOREST SCIENTISTS ADDRESS IMPORTANT ECOLOGICAL QUESTIONS – PARTICIPATE IN THE FOREST FUNGI PROJECT

The Forest Fungi Project is a community science project associated with the Lankau Lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The project aims to engage the broader forestry and forest landowner community in the process of scientific research while generating data that will address important ecological questions. The Forest Fungi Project was launched in 2015, and we have since had more than 1000 soil samples sent to our lab by park volunteers, youth programs, K-12 and college students, forest landowners, and Master Naturalists. We are currently lacking data from southern states and would greatly appreciate samples from that region.

Why fungi? There are thousands of fungi that live in tree roots, called mycorrhizae, that help trees access water and nutrients. Given their importance to forest function, our lab is interested in the diversity and distribution (or the “who is where”) of mycorrhizae fungi across eastern temperate forests – and we need your help!

Participation is easy. We are asking that you send us tree roots from any forested location east of the Mississippi River. More detailed instructions are found on our website at https://forestfungi.russell.wisc.edu/, and feel free to contact us at forestfungiproject@wisc.plantpath.edu if you have any questions. Share this opportunity with your neighbors, foresters, natural resource professionals, community scientists, and others.

Mr. Jim Strickland, 2021 Florida Land Steward of the Year, receiving his Wildlife Habitat Recognition Program sign. Photo by Luis Gonzalez.

CONGRATULATIONS MR. JIM STRICKLAND: 2021 FLORIDA LAND STEWARD OF THE YEAR

A lifelong resident of Manatee County and sixth generation Floridian with over six decades of ranching experience, Mr. Jim Strickland has developed a strong land ethic and is passionate about preserving the working and wild lands of his home state. Jim is owner of Strickland Ranch and managing partner of Blackbeard’s Ranch, both located in Manatee County. It is for his work and accomplishments on Blackbeard’s Ranch that he is recognized with the 2021 Florida Land Steward of the Year Award. More about Mr. Jim Strickland and Blackbeard’s Ranch here.

FUNDING AVAILABLE FROM THE NATURE CONSERVANCY (TNC) TO TREAT COGONGRASS IN CENTRAL PANHANDLE REGION OF FLORIDA

If you have a cogongrass problem on property in Calhoun, Gadsden, or Liberty Counties The Nature Conservancy North Florida Program has funding for 120 total acres of cogongrass treatment in counties surrounding the Apalachicola National Forest. Private landowners in Calhoun, Gadsden, and Liberty Counties who would like to be considered for this funding should contact Brian Pelc, (850) 222-0199 x103, bpelc@tnc.org

What does cogongrass look like? See this identification guide for cogongrass.

GET FLORIDA LAND STEWARD EMAIL UPDATES

Don’t miss out on news and events! Sign up for the regular email updates! Send an email to Chris at cdemers@ufl.edu to be added to the email listserv. Florida Land Steward email updates are sent once a week or every other week and include the latest calendar of workshops, tours and other events; a link to the current issue of this quarterly newsletter; updates on cost-share and other assistance programs, opportunities, and resources; and other stewardship related news and information.

UPCOMING EVENTS AND WEBINARS

See our Events Calendar and News page for upcoming events, webinars, webinar and event materials, and the latest news on assistance programs and other opportunities and information.

ACCESS THE QUARTERLY FLORIDA LAND STEWARD NEWSLETTER ONLINE

The Spring-Summer 2021 issue is now available! Access the current and back issues of the quarterly Florida Land Steward newsletter here.

HAVE AN EVENT OR RELATED NEWS TO SHARE?

Drop a line with the details and link(s) to Chris Demers at cdemers@ufl.edu.

Florida Land Steward Program LogoCONSIDER A GIFT IN SUPPORT OF THE UF/IFAS FLORIDA LAND STEWARD PROGRAM

The mission of the UF/IFAS Florida Land Steward Program is to help and encourage private landowners to actively manage their land resources for long-term environmental, economic, and social benefits. This program is largely supported by partners and donors. If this program has made a difference in your land stewardship efforts please consider a gift. Support the UF/IFAS Florida Land Steward Program here. Thanks!