One of the questions woodland owners ask most frequently is, "Where I can I find help?" Fortunately, there are many types of assistance available, from educational programs to on-the-ground technical advice, to cost share and other financial assistance programs. In fact, the large number of agencies and programs, each with its own acronym, can make things pretty confusing at times!




OSU Extension Service

* Educational programs & tours

* Publications

* Clearinghouse services for woodland management questions


The OSU Extension Service is a good place to start. OSU Extension is the off-campus educational arm of Oregon State University. The extension forestry staff consists of subject matter specialists at OSU in Corvallis and forestry agents in some Oregon counties. Forestry agents provide workshops, demonstrations, tours, publications, and audiovisual materials on woodland management.


OSU Extension trains experienced woodland owners to become Master Woodland Managers (MWMs). Each volunteer completes 80 hours of instruction and then returns the same number of volunteer hours, visiting and assisting other woodland owners. MWMs are active in several Oregon counties. Contact your Extension office in your county for more information.


OSU Extension has dozens of publications on a wide range of rural living topics, including many on woodland management. Order publications through Extension and Experiment Station Communications at OSU or from county Extension offices. There generally is a charge to cover costs. A list of publications is available on the Web site http://eesc.oregonstate.edu. Many can be viewed on-screen and printed out.


Local extension offices:

Jackson County Extension 569 Hanley Road Central Point, OR 97502 (541) 776-7371

Josephine County Extension 215 Ringuette St. Grants Pass, OR 97527 (541) 476-6613


Oregon Department of Forestry

* Forest practices rules administration

* The place to file notifications of operation

* The place to ask about reforestation requirements

* Service forestry program provides on-site assistance for woodland owners including administration of cost-share programs


Service Foresters with the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) provide on-site technical assistance to woodland owners for tree planting, fire hazard reduction, insect and disease issues, thinning, and related woodland management activities. Service foresters also administer the technical aspects of forestry cost-share programs such as the Stewardship Incentive Program (SIP) and the Forestry Incentives Program (FIP).


Forest practices foresters with ODF administer and enforce the Oregon Forest Practices Act, which governs timber harvesting, road building, and other forestry activities on private land in the state. In some counties, ODF offers a free fire inspection of homes in the rural-urban interface. A forest officer inspects your residence and the surrounding grounds and makes recommendations ways to improve your property's ability to survive a wildfire.


Oregon Department of Forestry

5286 Table Rock Road

Central Point, OR 97502

(541) 664-3328


Oregon Department of Forestry

5375 Monument Drive

Merlin, OR 97526

(541) 474-3152


Natural Resources Conservation Service/Farm Service Agency/Soil & Water Conservation Districts

    * Conservation planning

    * Technical assistance for soil and water conservation issues

    * Financial assistance/incentive programs for riparian planting (CREP) and forestry practices (EQIP)


Formerly known as the Soil Conservation Service, this federal agency assists landowners with projects involving soil and water conservation. Many NRCS clients are farmers, but the agency works with a variety of landowners including forest owners. NRCS provides technical advice regarding irrigation, pasture management, riparian restoration, wetland management, and other conservation practices. NRCS works closely with local Soil and Water Conservation Districts and the federal Farm Service Agency (FSA).


The Farm Service Agency (FSA) administers the paperwork end of some federal cost share programs such as CREP.




MEDFORD, OR 97501-3769

(541) 776-4267

Josephine County SWCD 476-5856


The United States Forest Service (USFS) is not staffed to provide assistance directly to private landowners. Financial and technical assistance is provided instead to the Oregon Department of Forestry to support its Service Forestry Program.


Rogue River National Forest

(Medford) 858-2200

Siskiyou National Forest

(Grants Pass) 471-6500


Woodland Owner Groups

The Oregon Small Woodlands Association (OSWA) is an association of family forestland owners. County OSWA chapters publish informational newsletters and offer frequent tours and meeting on topics of interest to woodland managers. Woodland association programs are generally open to non-members. Attending these programs is a great way to pick up tips for managing your property. It's also an opportunity to meet other woodland owners to share ideas and experiences.


Woodland owners who are implementing good forestry activities on their property may qualify to have their properties certified as a Tree Farm. Certified Tree Farmers receive a Tree Farm sign and certificate. A minimum of 10 forested acres is required. The program is sponsored nationally by the American Forest Foundation, and in Oregon by the Oregon Tree Farm System. Members receive the national Tree Farmer magazine and a periodic inspection from a professional forester.


Oregon Small Woodlands Association, 1775 32nd Pl NE, Suite C, Salem, OR 97303, (503) 588-1813, http://www.oswa.org.


Oregon Tree Farm System, 3415 Commercial St. SE, Suite N, Salem, OR 97302-0242, 1-800-603-0865.


Watershed Councils

Watershed councils are local groups dedicated to improvement of water quality and fish habitat in specific drainages or watersheds. Council members typically include local residents and landowners, representatives from state and federal agencies, and local forestry, farm, and other industry representatives. Watershed groups sometimes offer informational tours and meetings of interest to woodland owners. They may also be a source of technical and financial assistance, especially for projects related to fencing, tree planting, and related stream restoration activities.


Forestry Consultants

Private forest consultants are available throughout the state to provide comprehensive assistance to landowners. Consultants provide many valuable services that are beyond the scope of public agency assistance programs. Many landowners find the services of a consultant to be especially valuable during the complex process of selling and harvesting timber. Consultants also can help landowners develop Forest Stewardship Plans. For a referral list of local forest consultants, contact your local Oregon Department of Forestry or OSU Extension Service office.




Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife

Medford (826-8774)

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) does not have an official outreach program to woodland owners but may be able to advise about fish and wildlife enhancement or problems with wildlife damage.


The Oregon Water Resources Department has information on water rights and pond and lake development. The Oregon's timber tax programs are administered by the Oregon Department of Revenue. The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality administers water quality laws, while the Oregon Department of Agriculture is involved with developing water quality improvement plans under Senate Bill 1010.


Oregon Water Resources Department, 3850 Portland Road, Salem, OR 97310 - (503) 378-3808.  Jackson County Watermaster, 774-6880.


Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, 811 SW 6th Ave., Portland, OR 97204, 1-800-452-4011, (503) 229-5630.


Oregon Department of Revenue

Salem (503) 378-4988 (Timber taxation)


County Assessor 

Jackson 774-6059

Josephine 474-5260


County Land Use/Planning

Jackson 774-6900

Josephine 474-5421


Burning information

Jackson 776-7007

Josephine 476-9663


Bureau of Land Management

Jackson 618-2200

Josephine 479-7244


Share this