Landowner workshop in Princess Anne hosted by Lower Shore Land Trust

PRINCESS ANNE — Not so long ago, virtually all of our region was blanketed by an Eastern deciduous forest that constituted one of the most biologically diverse biomes on Earth. More recently, to provide for our burgeoning population’s needs for food and shelter, permanent clear-cuts were carved out of this forest. As a result, our region has experienced the worst habitat fragmentation in our nation. Beyond the species extinctions that follow habitat loss and fragmentation, the worst extinction is one in which we as a society lose touch with what it means to live in a forested society, losing even the memory that there was once a forest here.


Due to massive land parcelization, the vast majority (85%) of Maryland’s woodland owners have less than ten acres. These are often the same people who believe that their wooded area is too small to consider any type of management. Yet, it is this group of woodland owners on whom the future of our forested landscape depends.CSC Backyard book


The Lower Shore Land Trust is sponsoring a Landowner Workshop on Tuesdays, March 24 and 31 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Somerset County Extension Office on Park Drive in Princess Anne.


Woodland communities can be cultivated either by converting lawns to natural areas or by transforming existing wooded areas into spatially complex multi-layered forests through a process of editing that supports high levels of floristic diversity. The foundation of practice for creating these residential woodland ecosystems rests on the sustainable landscaping principles of woodland gardening.


During this workshop, participants will create a map of their property and design their woodland around structural elements such as walking trails, streams, and houses, from the largest compositional elements (shade trees) down to wildflower sweeps and native groundcover masses. Workshop participants will assess how their personal family and property resources support their woodland design efforts and how their landscape management decisions connect with the larger landscape around it. Special emphasis will be placed on transforming excess lawn area to natural woodland areas.


The registration fee for the entire two-session course is $35 per individual (family). Workshop participants will receive a full-color 130-page manual, The Woods in Your Backyard, as well as CCLC’s Conservation Landscaping Guidelines and USFWS’s Native Plants for Wildlife Habitat and Conservation Landscaping.


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