Online Learning Program Recommended by the Conservation Commission

Vermont Urban and Community Forestry

Backyard Woods Program

Do you own less than 25 acres and are interested in learning more about your woods?

Do you want to become a more active steward of your woods?

Then the Backyard Woods Program might be what you are looking for!

The Vermont Backyard Woods Program is a six-week online program that, using a combination of video’s, webinars, discussion forums, and weekly activities, explores the following themes: An Introduction to Your Backyard and BeyondGetting to Know Your WoodsBackyard Woods ProjectsDeveloping a Backyard Woods Action Plan.

By the end of the program participants will:

  • Understand why their backyard woods matter, the benefits it provides, and how it contributes to Vermont’s forest landscape.
  • Identify natural history and cultural features in their backyard woods.
  • Identify and rank stewardship goals and objectives for their property.
  • Develop a stewardship action plan with a project schedule and plan for implementing stewardship activities.
  • Increase awareness and connection to resources and organizations available to assist landowners in post-course activities.

Fall 2018 Course

About the Course

  • The Backyard Woods Program is designed for homeowners who own between 5 and 25 acres.
  • This course is hosted online and is composed of 4 sections. Each section has videos and activities that are to be completed on your own schedule.
  • Two live webinars offer participants a chance to ask questions in real time, and recordings will be made available afterwards.
  • Additionally, participants will be invited to in-person field walks.
  • Check out the Backyard Woods Program topics here.

Schedule & Times

September 24 – November 3

This online course is self-paced and all activities are to be completed on your own schedule during the course, with the exception of the live webinars & walks.  The course schedule is intended to keep you on track to complete the course in 6 weeks. This flexibility allows you to complete all activities and watch videos when you have time each week. You can expect to spend 1.5-3 hours each week on the course.

Live webinars

  • Sept. 24, 5pm, Forest Ecology with Nancy Patch, Franklin-Grand Isle County Forester, VT Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation
  • October 24, 5pm, Stewardship Projects with Keith Thompson Stewardship Program Manager with VT Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation

Field Walks

  • October 13, 9am-12pm, Craftsbury, TBD
  • October 20, 9-12pm, Jericho, TBD
  • October 20, 9-12pm, Woodstock, TBD
  • November 3, 9am-12pm, Franklin County, TBD


The course costs $30 per family, before September 16, or $40 (on September 17 or afterwards).

Register here!


Gwen Kozlowski, or 802-651-8343, ext 506.

To request a disability-related accommodation to participate in this program, please contact Gwen Kozlowski,, at 802-651-8343 or 1-800-571-0668, by September 3, 2018, so we may assist you.

The Vermont Backyard Woods Program is a collaborative effort between UVM Extension, VT Department Forests, Parks and Recreation, Vermont Fish and Wildlife, Vermont Woodlands Association, VT Coverts, and VT Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS).