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Director's Message

From my experience in the woods over the past couple decades I’ve observed invasive weed species becoming an increasing forest health issue. Northwest forests are beset by an international cast of invaders, most commonly: Himalayan blackberry, Scotch broom, English ivy and English holly.

As an owner of over 200 acres of forestland, I’ve faced my share of challenges keeping these assertive species at bay and ensuring they don’t supplant native vegetation. The pattern I’ve observed is the first two non-native plants quickly colonize recently disturbed sites, such as clearcuts or road margins; whereas the latter two are increasingly emerging in the shady understory of many forests. I’ve always been reluctant to use herbicides on the lands I manage. Having been an organic farmer, it just wasn’t an option. Now I’m a manager of FSC certified forests, and this standard emphasizes a non-chemical approach to ameliorating unwanted weed species and using silvicultural strategies to minimize their presence.

Shade is the best strategy for controlling non-native blackberry and broom – which is another reason to convert from clearcutting to periodic thinning. Ensuring all equipment that enters your land has been washed clean of soil from previous projects also will help minimize the spread of weed seeds.

The shade-tolerant invasive species, such as ivy and holly are more problematic. It’s possible to consistently cut them and eventually exhaust their root systems, but you have to be diligent, which is difficult if you don’t live on your land or are a busy person like I am. A very judicious, one-time and targeted application of herbicide may be justified in these instances. If you’re searching for control strategies for invasive species, check your County’s  Noxious Weed Control Board’s website, or visit the Pacific Northwest Weed Management Handbook. I also invite you to share your experiences with non-chemical approaches to controlling weeds on our Facebook page.

Kirk Hanson

Forestry Director
Northwest Natural Resource Group
(360) 316-9317
Did you know weeds like knotweed alter the plant and wildlife communities along streams and can increase erosion? Here are 5 big weeds and 5 small weeds forest owners should monitor and remove from their land:

Big 5: Ivy, broom, holly, knotweed, blackberry (but not the native trailing blackberry)
Small 5: garlic mustard, reed canary grass, butterfly bush, herb robert, tansy ragwort

Upcoming Events

Watershed & Stream Ecology & Management
Saturday, June 9, 2018
Sisters, OR

Fire Fuels Management Techniques
Saturday, June 16, 2018
Medical Springs, OR

Forestry for resilience, carbon storage, & wood products in a changing world
NNRG Event!
June 19-20, 2018
Olympia, WA

Forest Owners Field Day
Saturday, June 23, 2018
Spokane, WA

Introduction to Grass Identification
Saturday June 23, 2018 - Register by June 15
Leavenworth, WA

Know Your Grasses - 2018 Workshop
June 27-29, 2018
Seattle, WA

Twilight Tour: Green Acres Forest Clackamas Woodland Farmer of the Year Nominee
Thursday, June 28, 2018
Estacada, OR

How to Manufacture Biochar from Woody Biomass
NNRG Event!
Saturday, June 30, 2018
San Juan Island, WA

Reed Canary Grass Attack
Saturday, June 30, 2018
Conway, WA

Featured Member

Eve Lonnquist can often be found working in the woods, just like her grandmother, who bought Cedar Row Farm in 1919 for $2000 and planted its namesake row of cedars. Nestled in the Nehalem River foothills, the 160-acre forest is stewarded by Eve, her two brothers and her partner Lynn Baker.
The family enjoys taking care of the land and balances multiple goals, including recreation and income from timber harvest as well as providing wildlife habitat. They are FSC-certified through NNRG’s group certificate and are members of the Oregon Woodland Cooperative, selling bundled firewood to grocery stores around the Portland area.
Eve and Lynn have honed techniques to protect young seedlings from the voracious deer and elk that often rest in their pasture. They’ve become practiced in DIY seedling survival while returning their stretch of the Nehalem floodplain back to shade-providing conifers as part of a Natural Resources Conservation Service project.
Eve and her brothers thin young trees in their red alder stands to help the remaining trees have the space to grow and improve wood quality. “Because our grandparents were here and we are tied to the property, we have an inter-generational connection with the property that we want to maintain,” says Eve. “And we want to do right by the property.”
Last year, Cedar Row Farm was Columbia County's Tree Farm of the Year. This 4-minute video by the American Tree Farm System and U.S. Forest Service celebrates the forest’s history and management. To Eve, being a certified tree farm “means that I’m managing the property for the health of the property and for income.”

Early Detection-Rapid Response

This proactive strategy promotes prevention and time- and cost-effective control.

Stop the Spread of Holly

Check out research about the spread and impact of holly on native species and practices to remove it.

What's New

Help prevent the next Scotch broom! Check your land for these new plants recently listed by the Washington State Noxious Weed Board.

Native Alternatives

Here are some great native plant alternatives to common ornamental invasives. Good bye butterfly bush, hello red flowering currant!

New Careers in Natural Resources

Along the Hoh River, the effort is on to remove invasive Scotch broom to improve stream functions and boost jobs in the woods.

Weeds for Sale

Before heading to the nursery or buying wildflower seeds as gifts, review this list to make sure you're not spreading invasive plants.

Learn more about controlling invasive species with these resources! 


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Our mailing address is:
Northwest Natural Resource Group
2701 1st Avenue, Suite 240
Seattle, WA 98121

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