A Pagosa Springs family was recognized for efforts toward growing renewable timber resources while protecting environmental benefits and increasing public awareness.DURANGO, Colo. – The Colorado State Forest Service has once again recognized a Pagosa Springs family as the state’s “Outstanding Tree Farmers of the Year.”

The annual award, which is bestowed for exceptional efforts toward growing renewable timber resources while protecting environmental benefits and increasing public awareness, was bestowed to the Seidel family in 1984 and again this year.

“It is rewarding to see subsequent generations maintain an attachment to their land, and there have been three generations involved in the management of this property,” said Dan Wand, owner of Wand Forestry and retired CSFS Durango Field Office forester.

Thinning non-commercially valuable timber

Second-generation Coloradoans, the Seidels have been managing their land since taking ownership in 1947.

Their approximately 195 acres of ponderosa pine and meadowland, now managed by George and Sarah Seidel, represent a natural, healthy condition due to the family’s ongoing efforts as Tree Farmers.

The Seidels have been practicing sustainable forestry in collaboration with the CSFS since 1971.

That year, they developed their first forest management plan and they have since thinned 10 to 30 acres of non-commercially valuable timber per year to improve the even-aged timber stand.

Their property has been certified as an American Tree Farm since 1979.

On a Saturday in August, the Seidels were officially recognized by the CSFS as the Colorado Tree Farmer of the Year for the second time.

“This is an honor to be recognized, as my father was in 1984,” said Sarah Seidel.

Find out more about Colorado tree farmers by visiting the CSFS Tree Farm Program web page.