What is a tree farm, ever heard of such a thing? Well you can stop thinking Christmas scenes, and snow-men because I am not talking about Christmas trees. Although a tree farm may indeed have Christmas trees, in fact it can have any type of forestry - including all those evergreens that are used around Christmas-time. The main principal behind a tree farm is the protection of the woodland from weather, disasters, and negative forest management and practices. These farms are owned privately by any individual who wants to be committed and to being environmentally responsible. Guidelines for managing this type of farm are provided by the American Forestry Foundation, and the program itself was developed in the 1940's and has been running since. Some of the requirements are that a certified tree farm must be of a certain size, i.e. between 10 and 10,000 acres. This size refers to the amount of land that is actually given over to forest. The owner has to agree a plan for the management of the forest land which has to be currently utilized for forest products which may include timber. As well as that the owner must guard the forest against threats such as fires, diseases, and insects. There are other requirements but those are the main ones. Best practice and conservation methods can be obtained through the American Forestry Foundation and they can also give good information with regard to harvesting, protecting, and maintaining your forest land. A magazine, which comes as a benefit of being a tree farmer, also provides valuable up to date information on managing your farm. There are lots of benefits to becoming a certified tree farmer; some of these are: A special certificate A sign designating your land as a certified tree farm A subscription to the tree farmer magazine. Tree farmers are sometimes recognized for their help in protecting the environment and some can even gain increased profits on their forest products. In addition to these rewards which are provided by the American Forestry Foundation, there are natural benefits as well. Maintaining your woodlands under the guidelines of the American Forestry Foundation can help with watershed, the quality of the water on your land, and help provide a safe environment for the creatures that live on your land. Protecting your forest can also provide a number of recreational benefits as well. However the main benefit to be had is just the fact that you will feel great about what you are doing. The process of becoming a certified tree farmer involves having your woodlands inspected, this inspection does not involve any fee payment. In fact, the volunteer inspector can help and advise you on your management plan and answer any questions you may have about the process. If you are interested in becoming a certified tree farmer then you should first of all contact your local forestry service or the American Forestry Foundation. It should be remembered that tree farms are not beneficial just to the owner of the tree farm, in fact, this program is beneficial to all Americans. Looking after nature should be a common goal and we all need to play our part where we can. The American Forestry Foundation is giving individuals who have the right type of land the power to do their part through their program. You can support the foundation or learn more information about the foundation online.