Cranberry Lake Forest Education & Research Center

Forest

The Forest

Of the 720 acres owned by the Foundation, approximately 560 acres is an upland forest. For the most part, this forest is a typical Puget Sound trough upland forest dominated by Douglas-fir. It has been actively managed as a tree farm for many decades. Portions of the property were even managed as a Christmas tree farm and, as such, some non-native and offsite species such Noble fir (although native to Washington, it is not found in this area) and Coast Redwood are present in some areas of the property. Aside from these impacts, the forest found on the property is influenced by the geology of the area as well. The coarse, glacial soils found throughout most of the property mean that the soils drain water rapidly, and have a low capacity to hold water. As a result Douglas-fir, which is tolerant of these conditions, comprises much of the forest. Other species found onsite include western redcedar, western hemlock, western white pine, Sitka spruce, grand fir, lodgepole pine, pacific madrone, bigleaf maple, red alder, black cottonwood and willow and cherry species.

The forest is actively managed as a tree farm and demonstration forest with three distinct management regimes: approximately 60 acres are managed with an even-aged harvest regime on a 60 year rotation; approximately 40 acres are managed in an even-aged harvest regime on a 40 year rotation, and approximately 460 acres is managed with an uneven-aged harvest regime on a 100 year rotation. 

Challenges to management include various forest health issues such as the presence of root rots and drought related issues as well as invasive species, such as Scotch broom.

Education Opportunities

Your group can help steward the land by managing invasive species, such as Scotch broom, plant trees, and learn how to take forest inventory plots. Learn about the differences between even-aged and uneven-aged management and the pros and cons of both systems. Learn about the wildlife that live in our forest. Come tour our forest and see our management opportunities and challenges!