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Conserving The Health Of Our Local Forest Community

Hogback Community College                                                        FOREST SOILS IN THE HOGBACK ECOREGION, 2017

Dates: April 6, 8, 15, 20, and 22, 2017 (see schedule table below)

Location: Bristol, Vermont

Cost: $160 (16-hour course)

 

Participants who complete this course can receive continuing education credit. Please indicate on your registration form if you are wanting to receive any of the credit options below:

  • Society of American Foresters Continuing Education Credits for re-licensing foresters: 12 Category 1 CFE credits
  • State of Vermont ANR/DEC Licensed Designer Continuing Education Credits: 8 for soils and 4 for non-soils.

 

"I’m thoroughly impressed with Dr. Harper’s extensive knowledge of soil science, and her ability to share seemingly endless technical information, which also included plant species, geology and topography that all related back to soils characterization."

—participant in Forest Soils in the Hogback Ecoregion

 

We are delighted to welcome back soil scientist and educator Dr. Wendy Sue Harper for her fifth year teaching this introductory course on forest soils, which is accredited through the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources (see note below). Students will attend 2 classroom presentations and 4 field trips targeting different soils on the Waterworks in Bristol. During classroom lectures, students will learn about soil properties as indicators of soil formation and land use potential (including the five soil forming factors, soil profiles and horizons, soil texture, structure, color, pH, and organic matter), and how to use NRCS soil information and maps.

During field studies, students will undertake simple experiments and learn basic field soil examination techniques while studying several different soil types (including glacial outwash deposits, clayplain soils, soils formed in acid or neutral tills, and wetlands and streambank soils).

This course is especially appropriate for landowners, natural resource professionals, educators, and planners who want to improve their understanding of soils and how they influence our landscape.

Date Time Location Activity

April 6, 2017

Thursday

7-9pm VFF office, Bristol Lecture 1: Basic soil properties as indicators of soil formation, the natural environment, and land use, including: the five soil forming factors; soil profiles and horizons; and soil texture, structure, color, pH, and organic matter.

April 8, 2017

Saturday

8:30am-12:30pm Waterworks Property, Bristol Field study 1: Introduction to basic field soil examination, descriptions and techniques; focusing on forest soils formed in glacial outwash deposits or neutral tills (Colton, Melrose, and Farmington)

April 15, 2017

Saturday

8:30am-12:30pm Waterworks Property Field study 2: More soil examination, focusing on soils in the clayplain forest or acid tills (Kingsbury, Covington, and Tunbridge)

April 20, 2017

Thursday

7-9pm VFF office, Bristol Lecture 2: Time for additional question on materials covered. Tour Web Soil Survey to develop an understanding of making soil maps and maps of land use potential to understand sites and the natural environment. Mini-lectures on soil issues raised by students, e.g. soil biology, pH, CEC, etc.

April 22, 2017

Saturday

8:30am-12:30pm

Waterworks Property Field study 3: More soil examination, focusing on wetland soils and soils that form along streams or acid forest soils formed in kamic materials (Walpole, Elmwood, and Stetson)

April 29, 2017

Saturday

8:30am-12:30pm Waterworks Property Snow/rain date, if needed.

How to Register: Download the registration form here. On it you’ll find detailed information about the registration process, including fees, cancellation policies, directions to course meeting sites, etc.  Please complete the registration form and mail with check payment to VERMONT FAMILY FORESTS at the address indicated on the form. We will hold your payment until we reach the minimum number of students required for offering the course. If we have already reached the course’s maximum student capacity by the time you submit your registration, we will place you on a waiting list.

   

About the Instructor 

Wendy Sue Harper, Ph.D. has over 25 years of experience in college-level education and agricultural technical assistance. Her undergraduate and graduate degrees were in soil science. She has taught soil science, ecological agriculture, and composting using skill-building approaches at Green Mountain College, the University of Vermont, and Dartmouth College. Wendy Sue teaches Agricultural Biodiversity at Green Mountain College and soils and composting to the Master Gardeners and Master Composters and has worked for UVM-Extension, Northeast-SARE, and NOFA-VT. Currently, Wendy Sue provides educational and technical services to the farming and gardening community through her business, WSH Consulting, in Monkton, VT.

 

 

Hogback Community College                                                    TREE IDENTIFICATION (plus critters!) IN THE LAKE CHAMPLAIN BASIN, From Mountains to Valley Floor

Dates: June 10, July 22, August 19, October 7, October 28, and November 11, 2017 (see schedule table below)

Location: various sites in Addison County, Vermont

Cost: $180 (18-hour course)

Registration: (download registration form below)

Minimum enrollment: 8 students

Maximum enrollment: 15 students

When you head into the woods with herpetologist/naturalist/conservationist extraordinare Jim Andrews, you're in for a whole-systems immersion. So while this course focuses on tree identification in the Lake Champlain watershed--from mountains to lake--you'll be immersed in exploration of the forest community of which those trees are a part. Here's how Jim describes the course:

"We are fortunate in Vermont to be surrounded by forestlands rich with a tremendous diversity of tree species. Our trees exhibit a wide variety of bark types, leaves, fruits, forms, and habitat preferences. Whether we are managing land, cutting firewood, searching for wildlife, or just enjoying the beauty and diversity of trees, being able to identify them is both useful and fun. It is also a vehicle to a greater understanding of our local biodiversity, ecology, and to improved stewardship of our local landscapes. This course will focus on year-round tree identification, but we will also discuss any of the interesting amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals we find among those trees."

In this course, you will spend six Saturday mornings traveling by foot in local woodlands from the lowlands of the Lake Champlain Basin to the bordering ridges identifying and discussing trees and any other vertebrates you find among them. The course will begin with four walks in the summer and early fall to examine leaves, fruit, bark, form, habitat, and twigs, then follow with two walks after leaf drop to focus on buds, bark, and form. Excursions will be relaxed and slow but on and off trail and will include some moderate climbing.

Students will learn to recognize some of the basic characteristics of bark, tree form, twigs, buds, leaves, fruit, and habitat to consider when trying to identify native trees in their natural settings. The course is intended for beginners and for those willing to share their skills and enthusiasm with beginners. Students are encouraged to take the course more than once to continue to develop and reinforce their skills.

Date Time Location Activity
June 10, 2017 8-11 AM Camel's Hump State Forest, Buel's Gore Use leaves, bark, buds, form, and habitat to identify trees in summer
July 22, 2017 8-11AM Sycamore Park & The TWC Waterworks in Bristol

Use leaves, bark, fruit, form, and habitat to identify trees in summer. Introduce some useful guides.

August 19, 2017 8-11AM Snake Mountain & vicinity in Addison Use leaves, bark, fruit, form, and habitat to identify trees in summer.
October 7, 2017 8-11AM The Nature Conservancy's Buckner Preserve in West Haven

Use leaves, bark, fruit, form, and habitat to identify trees in early fall. Southern Valley Species and perhaps some other interesting critters.

October 28, 2017 8-11AM Green Mountain National Forest along Long Trail in Goshen

Use needles, bark, buds, form, and habitat to identify trees after leaf drop. Higher Elevation Species.

November 11, 2017 8-11AM Dead Creek Wildlife Management Area

Use bark, buds, form, and habitat to identify trees after leaf drop. Valley Species. Continue a lifetime of tree (& critter) ID and stewardship.

 

About the instructor: Jim Andrews is a full time herpetologist and conservationist with a life-long recreational and professional interest in the natural history and identification of trees. He has lead tree identification field trips in Vermont for a variety of organizations. He teaches herpetology and field ornithology as an adjunct professor at UVM and performs biological surveys of many taxonomic groups as a private consultant. His goal is to create enjoyable and interesting field experiences through which teacher and students can learn together and as a result, become better stewards of our environment.

How to Register: Download the registration form here. In it you’ll find detailed information about the registration process, including fees, cancellation policies, directions to course meeting sites, etc.  Please complete the registration form and mail with check payment to VERMONT FAMILY FORESTS at the address indicated on the form. We will hold your payment until we reach the minimum number of students required for offering the course. If we have already reached the course’s maximum student capacity by the time you submit your registration, we will place you on a waiting list.