University of Maryland Extension

The Woods in Your Backyard

Woods in Your Backyard
Tuesday, May. 5, 2015 - 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Charles County Extension Office
9375 Chesapeake Street, Suite 119
La Plata, MD 20646
United States
Event Type: 
Lyle Almond

*This class meets May 5 and again on May 12 from 6-9 pm. Please plan to attend both sessions; in addition, an optional field component will be offered.

 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.

  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).

To register please send a check or money order (and, if possible, your email address) made out to "University of Maryland" to:

Lyle Almond
Forest Stewardship Educator
University of Maryland Extension
Wye Research & Education Center
124 Wye Narrows Drive
P.O. Box 169
Queenstown, MD  21658-0169

 Workshop participants will receive a full‐color 130‐page manual, The Woods in Your Backyard, as well as CCLC’s Conservation Landscaping Guidelines and a native tree identification guide.

 We request that, prior to the workshop, you complete the following activities:

  • Email three digital photos to sends e-mail) that show:
    1. the overall perspective of your property
    2. the back of your home, and
    3. the front of your home.
  •  Your email address, to receive further correspondence.

 Lyle Almond hails from the temperate old-growth rain forests of Washington State’s wild Olympic coast. After receiving his MS degree in Forest Resources Management from the University of Washington (Seattle), he worked and lived in coastal tribal communities as a forester and salmon habitat restoration ecologist. He subsequently received a Fulbright Commission exchange that took him to Slovenia, Switzerland, and Wales to study the resurgence of nature-based forestry currently sweeping across Europe. After returning to his childhood home in Virginia, he discovered the art of woodland gardening set amid the groundswell movement in sustainable landscaping spreading across the Mid-Atlantic’s eastern deciduous forest. He received a Professional Certificate in Landscape Design from the University of Richmond at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden before his recent appointment as Forest Stewardship Educator for University of Maryland Extension based at the Wye Research and Education Center.

Lyle Almond
Contact Email:
Contact Phone: 
410-827-8056 x125
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