Adventures from the Area Forestry & Natural Resources Agent

February 21, 2024

Jeff Fellers
Area Forestry & Natural Resource Agent
Chester, Laurens, Newberry, Union, & York

One thing I love about working for Clemson Extension is the diversity of work throughout the seasons.  Rarely do we have the same tasks day after day.  It often changes with the season. The fall and winter seasons bring about fairs and festivals, along with our normal activities.

Union County Agricultural Fair
October is all about the fair in Union County.  The Union County Extension Office is heavily involved in managing the livestock, poultry, agricultural products, and home economics sections.  We also operate the Union County 4-H Shooting Sports Trailer throughout the week of the fair.  On Thursday of the fair, we also host a 5K day where all the Union County public schools bring their kindergarten classes to the fair to learn about livestock and agriculture.  I always enjoy presenting on the crops section for this field trip.  If you have never visited the Union County Agricultural Fair I highly recommend coming by and seeing us. 

Jeff Fellers teaching Kids in the Parks Track Trail

Kids in the Parks Track Trail
I had the opportunity to lead a trail hike for the Newberry County Recreation Department for their grand opening of the Kids in the Parks Track Trail.  This trail is located at Lynches Woods in Newberry County.  I really enjoyed spending the afternoon with the children and helping them identify some trees and shrubs, along with learning about growth rings on pine trees.  The Newberry County Recreation Department has a nice kiosk with brochures that help educate those who take the hike.

Wood Magic Forest Fair
Wood Magic Forest Fair is a free field trip for fourth graders, hosted by the South Carolina Forestry Commission.  The program provides a learning experience about the forest industry in South Carolina that meet fourth grade school standards.  Volunteers from around the forest industry come together to teach fourth graders all about forestry.  This year I had the opportunity to teach the Gifts of the Forest station at the Harbison State Forest location.  For more information on Wood Magic visit:

Learn to Burn

Learn to Burn
In November, I had the opportunity to assist with a Learn to Burn program in Union County.  This program was hosted by the Piedmont Prescribed Fire Cooperative at a private landowner’s property.  Participants were able to actively participate in a burn on a mature pine stand.  They were able to see the process from planning, preparation, execution, and mop up.  Learn To Burn provides a great educational experience to landowners that are wanting to learn how to implement prescribe fire on their property.

Newberry Forestry Association
The Newberry Forestry Association had their last quarterly meeting in 2023 on November 14.  We met at Mt. Pleasant UMC.  Eddie Reese, with NRCS, presented on forestry cost share programs.  Our next meeting will be February 13, 2024, and our topic will be estate planning. 

Laurens Forest Landowners Association
The Laurens Forest Landowners Association had their last quarterly meeting in 2023 on November 28.  We met at the Laurens County Farm Bureau Office.  Chris Gordy, from West Fraser, presented on local and statewide mill updates.  Our next meeting will be February 27, 2024.

Shooting Sports Trailer

 Grand American
This was the first year that we took the Union County 4-H Shooting Sports Trailer down to the Grand American in Orangeburg, SC.  Along with Forged In 4-H, we set up a display to help raise funds for the two programs.  Just like at the Union County Agricultural Fair, the trailer is set up for participants to have fun shooting air rifles.  For those less experienced shooters, we spend a little extra time helping them learn the basics of shooting.  Forged In 4-H also provided forging demonstrations, while selling some of the items that were made through the program.  The Grand American provided an excellent venue to advertise our program and educate participants about what great programs we have to offer.

 4-H Food Plots
One of my favorite activities in this job is judging 4-H Food Plots.  We typically do this in January, so the weather is normally not cooperative.  This year however, we had a very nice day to be out in the woods.  We judged 1 in Newberry County and 2 in Union County.  For more information on the 4-H Food Plot Project visit the following link:

Upcoming Events:

Woodland Stewards Silvopasture Webinar Series – January 30 through March 5

Newberry Forestry Association Meeting February 12, 2024

Indian Creek Field Day February 22, 2024

Laurens Forest Landowners Association Meeting February 27, 2024

Broad River Watershed Landowner Interest Meeting March 7, 2024 Spotlight on Ag March 14, 2024


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