Longleaf Pine Initiative
NRCS Georgia has made it a priority to expand and restore the Longleaf pine ecosystem in Georgia. Many efforts have been documented across the State on private lands where NRCS has partnered with private landowners and partners to rebuild the once thriving ecosystem to its former glory.
Longleaf pine forests once encompassed more than 90 million acres of the North American landscape. Today, only three percent, or 3.4 million acres, remain and, yet, Longleaf pine forests represent some of the world's most biologically diverse ecosystems.
The Longleaf pine ecosystem provides critical habitat for 29 threatened and endangered species. Those threatened and endangered species include the gopher tortoise, indigo snake and red-cockaded woodpecker.
The Longleaf Pine Initiative began when an interdepartmental Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) among USDA, the Department of Interior and the Department of Defense identified the longleaf pine ecosystem as a priority resource concern.
As part of the initiative, NRCS and its conservation partners in nine states are helping private landowners improve the sustainability and profitability of Longleaf pine forest ecosystems. The following important conservation practices improve the forests' health: forest stand improvement, prescribed burning, restoration and management of rare or declining habitats, and tree/shrub establishment.
In fiscal year 2013, Georgia approved 220 contracts under the Longleaf Pine Initiative. Those contracts covered 11,634 acres and were funded with $3,464,666 million.
Watch this great animation video "Restoring a Natural Wonder: The Longleaf Pine Forest"
Sign-up for the Longleaf Pine Initiative is continuous.
EQIP Manual Supplement: Longleaf Pine Initiative
Longleaf Pine Initiative 2013 Progress Report
National Longleaf Initiative
To apply, contact your local USDA Service Center.
For more information contact
Assistant State Conservationist for Programs