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How this helps you:
Use this activity to determine which non-timber forest products are available seasonally on your woodland. Then learn about the management and marketing considerations for these products.
Step 1: Read the Chapter
Step 2: Brainstorm NTFP Products for your woodlands
Take a moment to brainstorm a list of things that you consider non-timber forest products. Use this checklist to help you get started. Set this list aside once you are done, but keep it handy.
Step 3: Categorize/classify your list
Use Worksheet A to assign your list of products, plus any additional that you might think of, to the given categories/classifications. You are welcome to modify the categories as you see fit, although the categories used are well recognized. As you do this also consider products and activities that your neighbors or others in the community might use or do.
Step 4: Make a seasonal calendar table or calendar wheel
Use either the seasonal calendar table Worksheet B or calendar wheel Worksheet C to track your interactions with various NTFPs over the course of the year. Feel free to incorporate other factors such as weather, busy periods, or competing interests for scarce resources such as time.
Step 5: Develop the lifetime arc for your NTFPs
Consider the arc of your lifetime and how NTFPs may have played a large or small role at certain points, and how these roles may have changed over time Worksheet D. Consider how they may continue to change for you or others in your family.
Step 6: Map locations of NTFP
Find an aerial or other map of you property (See Chapter 2: Conducting a Woodland Inventory) or, if you know the layout and habitat well, simply draw a map. Use the map to identify known or potential locations with non-timber (and timber) resources of interest. Work with a forester or knowledgeable natural resource manager/user if you are not comfortable with doing this yourself.
Step 7: Combine your seasonal calendar and land map
Combine your seasonal calendar and land map to create a NTFP route that incorporates the resources of interest to you. Commit to walking this route 4x throughout the year to view the landscape through this each seasonal lens and to ensure that that you have included everything. Take pictures and make notes in a journal. Note dates when you walk and observations about budding, flowering, color change, animal observances, abundance, or anything else that may catch your eye (or ear).
Step 8: Identify WHY
Use Worksheet E to think about WHY? for each What?, When?, Where?, and for each Who? Feel free to change the categories if you feel they do not represent your situation.
Step 9: Involve family and friends
Designate some time with your family or friends to think about What?, When?, and Where? – with each person – to get a complete understanding of the complete suite of resources that are valued by your family. Have each person use the Worksheets from the previous exercises.