OJF  Vol.3 No.4 , October 2013
Family Forest Owners’ Motivation to Control Understory Vegetation: Implications for Consulting Forestry
Abstract: Forest vegetation management has evolved as a recognized component of intensive forest management practice. It involves the management of competing vegetation necessary to obtain the high yields expected in modern forest plantations via control of interfering plants that influence regeneration outcome, impact timber stand development, and limit native plant and wildlife diversity. It includes cultural control, fire control, mechanical control, biological control, and chemical control. The public perception of forest vegetation management, especially chemical control, is sometimes negative due to health and environmental concerns. It is an important tool in the forest management alternatives available to consulting foresters managing family forest lands (the vast majority of private forest land in the United States). We report on a study that addresses the motivations of family forest owners that implement forest vegetation management practices and the motivation of those who chose not to implement after forester recommendations to do so. For those who do implement forest vegetation management, improvement of wildlife habitat and increased timber growth was the main motivation. For those who did not, cost was the main concern. Size of forest holding plays a major role in determining who will practice intensive forestry.  
Cite this paper: Londeau, A. & Straka, T. (2013). Family Forest Owners’ Motivation to Control Understory Vegetation: Implications for Consulting Forestry. Open Journal of Forestry, 3, 99-103. doi: 10.4236/ojf.2013.34016.

[1]   Ammer, C., Balandier, P., Bentsen, N. S., Coll, L., & Lof, M. (2011). Forest vegetation management under debate: An introduction. European Journal of Forest Research, 130, 1-5.

[2]   Balandier, P., Collet, C., Miller, J. H., Reynolds, P. E., & Zedaker, S. M. (2006). Designing forest vegetation management strategies based on the mechanism and dynamics of crop tree competition by neighbouring vegetation. Forestry, 79, 3-27.

[3]   Butler, B. J. (2008). Family forest owners of the United States, 2006. General Technical Report NRS-27. Newtown Square, PA: USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station.

[4]   Butler, B. J., Miles, P. D., & Hansen, M. H. (2013). National woodland owner survey table maker web application, version 1.0. Amherst, MA: USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station.

[5]   Cubbage, F. W. (1983). Economics of forest tract size: Theory and literature. General Technical Report SO-41. New Orleans, LA: USDA Forest Service, Southern Forest Experiment Station.

[6]   Gilliam, F. S., &. Platt, W. J. (1999). Effects of long-term fire exclusion on tree species composition and stand structure in an old-growth Pinus palustris (Longleaf pine) forest. Plant Ecology, 140, 5-26.

[7]   Howle, M. B., Straka, T. J., & Nespeca, M. C. (2010). Family forest owners’ perceptions of chemical methods for invasive species control. Invasive Plant Science and Management, 3, 253-261.

[8]   Jackson, D. R., & Finley, J. C. (2011). Herbicides and forest vegetation management: Controlling unwanted trees, brush, and other competing forest vegetation. University Park, PA: Pennsylvanian State University.

[9]   Jackson, D. R., Wolf, M. T., & Finley, J. C. (2009). Regenerating hardwood forests: Managing competing plants, deer, and light. Forest Stewardship No. 15. University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University, College of Agricultural Sciences.

[10]   Little, K. M., Willoughby, I., Wagner, R. G., Frochot, H., Gava, J., Gous, S., Lautenshlager, R. A., Orlander, G., Sankaran, K. V., & Wei, R. P. (2006). Towards reduced herbicide use in forest vegetation management. South African Forestry Journal, 207, 63-79.

[11]   McCormack, M. L. (1994). Reductions in herbicide use in forest vegetation management. Weed Technology, 8, 344-349.

[12]   Miller, J. H. (2006). Forest vegetation management: Development in the science and practices. Forestry, 79, 1-2.

[13]   Newton, M. (2006). Taking charge in forest vegetation management. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 36, 2357-2363.

[14]   Nowak, C. A., & Ballard, B. D. (2005). A framework for applying integrated vegetation management on rights-of-way. Journal of Arboriculture, 31, 28-37.

[15]   Nunamaker, C., & Valachovic, Y. (2007). Forest vegetation management. Forest Stewardship Guide 6, Publication 8236. Oakland, CA: University of California.

[16]   Osiecka, A., & Minoque, P. J. (2011). Considerations for developing herbicide prescriptions for forest vegetation management (FOR273). Gainesville, FL: University of Florida.

[17]   Smallidge, P. J. (2009). Strategies to control undesirable and interfering vegetation in your forest. Forest Landowner, 68, 38-39.

[18]   Stout, S., & Finley, J. (2001). What are interfering plants, and when are they are problem? Sustainable Forestry Initiative of Pennsylvania, Summer, 8-10.

[19]   Stringer, J. W., Clatterbuck, W., & Seifert, J. (2010). Site preparation and chemical control guidelines for hardwood tree plantings. Athens, GA: Southern Regional Extension Forestry.

[20]   Vasic, V., Konstantinovic, B., & Orlovic, S. (2012). Weeds in forestry and possibilities of their control (Chapter 8). In: A. J. Price (Ed.), Weed control (pp. 147-170). Rijeka, Croatia: InTech.

[21]   Wagner, R. G. (1994). Toward integrated forest vegetation management. Journal of Forestry, 92, 26-30.

[22]   Wagner, R. G., Flynn, J., & Gregory, R. (1998). Public perception of risk and acceptability of forest vegetation management alternatives in Ontario. The Forestry Chronicle, 75, 720-727.

[23]   Wagner, R. G., Little, K. M., Richardson, B., & McNabb, K. (2006). The role of vegetation management for enhancing the world’s forests. Forestry, 79, 57-79.

[24]   Walstad, J. D., & Kuch, P. J. (1987). Vegetation management for conifer production. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons.

[25]   Wiensczyk, A. Swift, K., Momeaulf, A., Thiffault, N., Szuba, F., & Bell, W. (2011). A review of the efficacy of vegetation management alternatives for conifer regeneration in boreal forests. Forestry Chronicle, 87, 175-200.