MANHATTAN, Kan. — Bill Kennedy has been recognized by the Kansas Forestry Association and the Kansas Forest Service as the 2017 Forest Stewardship Tree Farmer of the Year. With more than 27 years of tree planting and woodland management experience, Kennedy’s Tree Farm just north of Manhattan provides an excellent hands-on learning venue for landowners interested in managing woodlands. It will be the site of the 2017 Fall Forestry Field Day on Oct. 4.

Kennedy will kick the day off with an overview of his experience followed by variety of educational sessions throughout the day.

Landowners with invasive species challenges such as bush honeysuckle, black locust, and sericea lespedeza will hear from Ryan Armbrust, Kansas Forest Service forest health specialist, regarding best management practices for these and other unwanted plants.

Concern for tick-borne diseases is on the rise. Dr. Brian Herrin, K-State veterinary parasitologist, will be on hand to provide the latest information on control and protection from some of the more common diseases in Kansas, including Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichia, and tularemia.

Understanding the potential for wood products is another aspect of woodland ownership. Dave Bruton, Kansas Forest Service utilization and marketing specialist, will discuss advances in biochar and other specialty product opportunities in Kansas.

As concerns for the decline in pollinators grow, landowners are increasingly raising honeybees. A session on beekeeping will be offered by Gary LaGrange of Servicemember Agricultural Vocation Education, or S.A.V.E farm, a non-profit that provides a vocational pathway to servicemembers transitioning to civilian life. LaGrange will be joined by Holly Shutt, Pheasants Forever wildlife biologist as they provide ideas on how to address the pollinator issue.

Improving woodlands for wildlife habitat, recreation, and beauty are some of the main objectives for Kansas woodland owners. Kansas Forest Service district forester Thad Rhodes and wildlife biologist Corey Alderson, Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism, will explain basic approaches to these important topics.

The field day will close on a question and answer session with a panel of Kansas master woodland owners.