American beaver in Dorchester County, MD. Photo © bev45,

American beaver in Dorchester County, MD. Photo © bev45,

Updated: April 18, 2023

In our Winter 2023 issue...

Learn how to join us for the spring session of our popular "The Woods in Your Backyard" online course. Help us learn more about our readers and subscribers by taking our short survey. Read about a potential ally in the fight against hemlock wooly adelgid, and how Marylanders can get a rebate for planting native trees. Our regular features include profiles of the American beaver in the Woodland Wildlife Spotlight, and Princess Tree in Invasives in Your Woodland, as well as our events calendar and the Brain Tickler challenge. 

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We Want Your Feedback!

Andrew A. Kling, Faculty Associate

I was talking with Jonathan Kays the other day about this newsletter, which, of course, was his invention—and he marveled that it’s now starting its 31st year. I’ve been the contributing writer and editor for almost eleven of those years, so we’ve both seen things come and go as well as changes to the newsletter and its readership. And now's the time to get some feedback from you about the newsletter.

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Registration is Now Open For the Spring Session of “The Woods in Your Backyard” Online Course

Registration is now open for the Spring 2023 session of “The Woods in Your Backyard” online course. Our course is designed primarily for small-acreage property owners who want to learn how to care for or expand existing woodlands, or to convert lawn space to woodlands. The self-directed, non-credit online course runs for ten weeks, from April 3 to June 13.

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Woodland Wildlife Spotlight: American Beaver

Andrew A. Kling, Faculty Associate

What do high fashion, “Alice in Wonderland,” and Oregon State University have to do with this issue’s spotlight?

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Invasives in Your Woodland: Princess Tree

Andrew A. Kling, Faculty Associate

Princess tree (Paulownia tomentosa), also known as "Empress tree," "Royal Paulownia," or simply "Paulownia," is a medium-sized tree that can grow up to 60 feet tall and two feet in diameter. It is an aggressive invasive that invades disturbed areas such as roadsides and stream banks.

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Fighting Bugs with Bugs

Cary Swift-Turner, Virginia Department of Forestry

Eastern hemlock is a coniferous tree that favors the cool and humid climate along the Appalachian Mountains. Hemlocks can grow more than 150 feet tall and live for more than 800 years. Unfortunately, healthy hemlocks are becoming increasingly rare due to the invasive hemlock wooly adelgid. Now control efforts include using another bug.

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Events Calendar

March 3, 2023
Introduction to Forest Carbon Markets
Brightpoint Community College, Chester VA & Online

Forest carbon markets are expanding rapidly in the area. If you are a forester, landowner, county leader, or just interested in the topic, this conference may be for you. At this conference, you will: Learn how forest carbon markets work, hear about opportunities for private woodland owners to participate, and much more. Hear from woodland owners with experience participating in carbon markets. $55 per person (includes breakfast and lunch) or $50 for virtual. Visit this link to register; deadline is February 17th.


March 7, 2023, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Increase Wildlife Diversity by Restoring Oak/Pine Woodlands

Join this webinar to learn more about ways to restore oak/pine woodlands and improve wildlife habitat. The influence of sunlight, overstory retention levels, fire, and vegetation structure and composition will be discussed to improve habitat for a variety of wildlife species when restoring oak/pine woodlands. For more information and to register, visit this link. Advance registration not available.


March 15, 2023, 12 noon-1 pm
Wildlife Wednesday Webinar: “Landscape Scale Conservation Partnerships and Planning in the Chesapeake Bay region”

Our webinar series returns for 2023! This webinar is free but registration is required. To register, visit:


March 19, 2023, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Scenic Rivers Land Trust Invasive Plant Removal Workdays
Bacon Ridge Natural Area, Crownsville MD

Join the Scenic Rivers Land Trust for the first of their workdays to remove invasive vines, shrubs, and grasses from trail areas. Volunteers will be trained in identification and tools can be provided. For more information, visit


March 25, 2023, 9:00 am - 11:00 am
Montgomery County Parks Weed Warriors
Sligo Creek Stream Valley Unit 4, Silver Spring MD

Join one of the Weed Warrior workdays to help control non-native, invasive plants and preserve the health of the county’s parks. Instruction and tools will be provided. Workdays are held in parks throughout the county and are led by volunteer Weed Warrior Supervisors and/or park staff. For more information, including additional dates and locations, and to register, visit the Weed Warriors web page at this link.


April 3—June 13, 2023
“The Woods in Your Backyard” online course
Our spring session of The Woods in Your Backyard begins April 3 and runs ten weeks to June 13. Learn more about the course and how to see a preview by reading the article on this webpage.