Forest Stewardship

What is Forest Stewardship?

Taking the time to care for your land is called "stewardship"- the desire to leave the land better than you found it. The more you know about your land, the better. Good stewards of the land consider water quality, aesthetics, fish and wildlife habitat, timber, recreation, soils, wetlands and other unique places, rare plants and unique natural communities, forest protection, and cultural and historical features.

Forest management is the practical application of scientific, economic, and social principles to achieve forest stewardship goals and objectives.

The science of forestry is known as "silviculture" (the art and science of establishing and growing trees) and "silvicultural systems" are a planned series of treatments for tending, harvesting, and re-establishing a forest.

The trees we see today are here because of the climate, topography, soils, and past uses of the land. Forest management and silviculture gives us the tools to help us shape what our forests will look like in the future. Read more about forest regeneration.

Caring for the land can be complicated. Owning a Piece of the Forest is a primer for current and prospective landowners and is a good place to start, even if you have owned your forestland for a long time.

The first step for any landowner is to know where your boundary lines are. Woodlot Boundary Line Marking provides general guidelines for how to mark boundaries and where to go for help.

Developing a plan that looks long term can help you realize your hopes and dreams for your land. A first step in developing a plan is to state your goals and objectives, at least what they are today. To help you, we have forms that ask you questions about your land. You may prefer the long version, or the shorter version.


Extension State Specialist, Forest Resources
Full State Specialist/Professor, Natural Resources
Phone: (603) 862-4861
Office: UNH Cooperative Extension, Taylor Hall, Durham, NH 03824