I’ve been writing a lot lately about Otter Point Woods and my working to update the forest management plan for the property. It’s been a fun project, and I’m making good progress.
At work, I spend a lot of time trying to help land managers and woodland owners think about how to ensure forests stay healthy in a world with a changing climate and a lot of other potential challenges. So often, determining the appropriate action requires going back to the beginning, and answering the most basic questions: What are you managing for? What do you most value and want to keep into the future?
(^There’s a life lesson in there somewhere.)
As I’ve been revising the plans for our land, I’ve been challenging myself to become more clear about what I value and what I want the land to provide in the future. I recently wrote about this exercise for the Women Owning Woodlands website, where I outlined how to write goals and objectives and provided a few examples from our own property. Check it out here.
Women Owning Woodlands is an effort to empower women woodland owners to actively participate in the stewardship of their land. Why? It’s just basic demographics: because women tend to live longer than men, the number of women who own or make decisions regarding woodlands is growing; in fact, the number of women owning woodlands more than doubled between 2006 and 2013. At the same time, women are less likely to have the same knowledge or exposure to a lot of land management information than men are, which can be intimidating. WOW and related events provide ways for women to gain more knowledge and confidence to manage their lands. It’s a cool idea, and I’m excited to see the effort grow.