Forestry & Land Use

The Forest Society owns and manages more than 55,000 acres of land in more than 100 New Hampshire municipalities (see our Reservations Guide).  We advocate for the “wise use” of forestry resources, and work with state and federal leaders and private landowners to assure that laws governing forestry and land use also promote wise use of forest resources.   

New Hampshire’s state forestry laws are designed to protect the forest and the private landowners who manage forested lands.  They are predicated on voluntary forest management practices articulated in a publication titled Good Forestry in the Granite State, prepared under the direction of the State Forester and 25 stakeholders and groups with an interest in the State’s forests.  The Forest Society was an active participant in the creation of this publication.  Copies are available at $20 each, or free electronically.

Current Use was created by an amendment to the New Hampshire Constitution in 1968 that enables owners of ten acres of land (or more) to be assessed a property tax which reflects the land’s current undeveloped use.  Land enrolled in current use is not necessarily permanently protected; however while enrolled it remains undeveloped, with uses limited to open space, forestry, and agriculture. 

We partner with the Granite State Division of the Society of American Foresters, the UNH Cooperative Extension, the NH Department of Resources and Economic Development's Division of Forests and Lands and the NH Timberland Owners Association to administer the New Hampshire Tree Farm Program.  NH Tree Farm has more than 1,500 members with more than 450,000 acres of timberland enrolled.