If you’re a forest landowner, chances are you need the technical assistance of a forestry professional. If you own between 10 and 1,000 acres of woodlands, please call us today at (803) 896-8800. We’ll come out to your land, walk it with you and make recommendations for how you can manage it for timber income, wildlife habitat improvement and any number of other objectives. Best of all, it’s completely free!
Find your forester
Or if you want to connect directly with the project forester in your area, use our simple county locator to find all your local South Carolina Forestry Commission forestry, wildfire, law enforcement and administrative personnel.
Don’t have a management plan?
A forest management plan is a great place to start for landowners who aren’t familiar with growing trees. A written management plan includes a map of the property, a description of your woodlands and recommendations for how best to achieve your goals in owning the property. Your local South Carolina Forestry Commission forester can advise you on how best to develop your plan. Private forestry consultants are also available to assist you.
Timber management assistance
Forestry Commission foresters will examine forestland and potential forestland at the request of the landowner. A written plan and map will be prepared for the landowner giving forest management recommendations that best meet the owner’s needs and objectives, provided that they are compatible with good forest management practices. Multiple-use recommendations will be made where applicable. When conditions warrant, such as a request for a detailed plan on a large tract, the landowner may be advised that it may be in his/her best interest to employ a consulting forester or industry forester. Forestry Commission foresters are normally limited to five man-days per landowner per year for basic forest management services. This includes both field and office time for making the woodland examination.
Own fewer than 10 acres?
Owners of smaller tracts will be provided general forest management advice and are encouraged to go to www.mylandplan.org for assistance in developing their own plan. Other resources such as the Master Tree Farmer program are available through Clemson Extension Service at www.clemson.edu/extension/natural_resources/index.html
Commission foresters are available to assist landowners with the reforestation of cutover, poorly stocked and open lands. The forester will visit the site and recommend the most cost effective method to control any competing vegetation, the best species of trees to plant, and spacing recommendations.
Our foresters can also help you find a contractor to do the work, order seedlings and apply for funds under the various federal and state cost-share assistance programs.
Check out our Cost-Share Rates brochure for the two programs (Forest Renewal Program and Southern Pine Beetle) administered by the South Carolina Forestry Commission.
Tree Planting Guidelines for Cost Share Programs
Timber marketing assistance
The Forestry Commission also offers assistance to landowners interested in marketing their timber. This assistance includes advice concerning the marketing of forest products, the advantage of competitive bids, providing buyers list, sample sales announcement forms and sample contract forms. This assistance is free of charge. Read more in the Timber Management Information section of our website.
A Timber marking service is also available with charges based on the amount of timber marked. The Forestry Commission will select and mark trees to be harvested, estimate their volume and provide a detail marking report to the landowner on the merchantable volume of trees that should be cut. Cost for this service is based on the amount of timber marked.
The Forestry Commission offers a wide variety of free and fee-based services as well as equipment rentals for landowners. Please visit our Fee/Rental Services page to learn about these services and equipment rentals.
Requests are accepted during normal business hours (8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday); requests received after 2 p.m. may not be handled until the following business day.
Tree Planting Guide
Planting Instructions – Planting instructions for various species. (pdf file)
Seedling Spacing/Trees Per Acre
- Before you sell your timber…!
- Understanding Timber as a Commodity
- Range of returns from planted loblolly pine
- DO and DON’T Tips on Selling Your Timber
- Timber prices
- Value of timber
- Timber buyers list
- A Landowners Guide to Forestry in South Carolina (pdf)
- Tax tips for forest landowners (2022 tax year) (pdf)
- Income tax deduction for timber casualty loss (pdf)
- National Timber tax website
- American Tree Farm Landscape Management Plan
Benefits of Prescribed Burning
Prescribed Fire Plan
DHEC Regulation 61-62.2
Fuel Load Estimation Guide
A Guide for Prescribed Fire in Southern Forests (USFS pdf)
Certified Prescribed Fire Manager (CPFM) program
Frequently Asked Questions about Outdoor Burning in South Carolina
SC Drought Index (Opens a new window.)
SC Prescribed Fire Council (opens in a new window)