There are benefits to being in the Tree Farm program, not the least of which is third party certification of your woodlot. But those aside, take a minute to think about the Vermont land you now own. If you have 10 acres or more this may be your biggest family asset. Unlike bank deposits, stocks, and bonds, it’s relatively inflation proof, has an amazing capacity to grow valuable products forever, provides lots of recreation, keeps you in good health with many strenuous activities, and, if properly managed through good stewardship of the land, makes a great contribution to your community. The potential importance, over the very long term, to you and your children’s children, and beyond, cannot be overemphasized. For most Tree Farms, the costs of belonging average considerably less than $100/year, a truly small price to pay for a great investment and your participation in leaving the land a better place than you found it. THINK ABOUT IT!
The specific benefits of becoming a Tree Farmer are:
- Knowing that you are managing your forest sustainably, as a good steward of the land.
- Becoming educated about forests, one of the world’s most important ecological resources (soil conservation, improvement of air quality, biodiversity, wildlife protection, etc.), so you can help spread the word about the importance of good forest stewardship.
- Stopping or slowing the fragmentation and development of Vermont’s forests.
- Helping to slow global warming by providing a vehicle for carbon sequestration.
- Helping protect and promote good forestry operations, the working forest concept, and the ability of forest landowners in Vermont to conduct business and enjoy their land without stifling rules and nuisance regulations.
- Ability to market products from your woodlands as PEFC certified.
- Access to information at the federal, state, and local level on markets, trends, legislation, tax issues, forest insects, diseases, wildlife issues, and other forest impacts and opportunities, such as ATV’s, eco-tourism, and trails.
- Access to forest experts in the program to assist in managing your forest.
- The right to display the Tree Farm sign, and certificate of membership.
- Participation in the state Tree Farmer of the Year event in Vermont.