Who qualifies for the Tree Farm Program?

There are two primary items that are considered when determining whether a forest landowner qualifies for the Tree Farm program.

First, the landowner must own 10 or more acres of forested land.

Second, they must have a written and implemented forest management plan that accounts for the production of forest products, water quality, wildlife habitat, soil conservation, biodiversity, and recreation opportunities.

The Tree Farm must also meet certain minimum standards and guidelines known as the “Standards of Sustainability.”

  • All timber harvests done in a sustainable fashion.
  • Protection from fire, insects, and diseases
  • Reforestation following harvest
  • Special sites protected
  • Aesthetics considered
  • Prudent use of chemicals
  • Use of qualified and properly trained contractors
  • By meeting the “standards of sustainability” the State Tree Farm Committee will certify your wood lot as a sustainably managed Tree Farm.

Benefits of Belonging

There is no cost for membership.

A landowner only has to meet the qualifications mentioned above. Numerous benefits are associated with membership in the Tree Farm system.

  • Professionally certified sustainable forest
  • Access to full subscription of Woodland magazine, a publication of the American Forest Foundation
  • Free subscription to Penn State’s “Forest Leaves” newletter, a publication for private forest landowners
  • Information and updates on legislative issues affecting forest landowners
  • Invitation to the National Tree Farmer Convention each year
  • Participation in the National Tree Farmer of the Year contest
  • Right to display Tree Farm sign and certificate for framing
  • However, the greatest benefit to landowners is the opportunity to meet and discuss forest management opportunities with a certified professional forester for free on a periodic basis.

How do I get started?

If you would like to determine if your property qualifies as a Tree Farm or if you would just like more information you can contact any member of the Tree Farm Committee. If you meet the criteria, a free inspection of your land can be arranged by contacting a certified inspecting forester in your area. A listing of certified foresters will be provided. You can also visit the national Tree Farm web site for information on the program.