Oregon Forestry Administration
ORS 526.490
Afforestation of certain idle lands; harvest requirements; inspection fees; lands subject to Oregon Forest Practices Act; rules; fees


It is the policy of the State of Oregon to encourage the afforestation of idle land for the purpose of establishing commercial forests if such afforestation is consistent with landowner objectives. The purpose of this section is to provide an incentive for afforestation by providing assurance that the State of Oregon will not prohibit the harvesting of trees planted on such lands within the first crop rotation.


As used in this section:


“Free to grow” means a stand of well-distributed trees that has a high probability of remaining or becoming vigorous, healthy and dominant over undesired competing vegetation.


“Parcel” has the meaning given that term in ORS 92.010 (Definitions for ORS 92.010 to 92.192).


Notwithstanding ORS 527.676 (Leaving snags and downed logs in harvest type 2 or 3 units), 527.710 (Duties and powers of board) or 527.755 (Scenic highways) or any rules promulgated thereunder, and except as provided in subsection (4) of this section, a person who, after September 9, 1995, plants or causes to be planted a stand of timber that is intended to become a merchantable stand of timber as defined in ORS 321.005 (Definitions for ORS 321.005 to 321.185, 321.560 to 321.600 and 477.440 to 477.460) on a parcel owned by the person, or a portion of such parcel not less than five contiguous acres, shall not be prohibited from harvesting the planted timber provided that:


Prior to the time of planting, the parcel or portion thereof has not been subject to any forest practice as defined in ORS 527.620 (Definitions for ORS 527.610 to 527.770) since July 1, 1972; and


Prior to the time of planting, the stocking of forest tree species on the subject parcel or portion thereof is less than 25 square feet of basal area per acre.


The provisions of subsection (3) of this section shall not apply to any land or timber located within 20 feet of any large or medium stream, or any small stream that is a fish-bearing or domestic use stream, as defined by the State Board of Forestry.


(a) If, within two to five years of planting under subsection (3) of this section, the person notifies the State Forester, the State Forester shall inspect the timber and shall issue a certificate to the owner indicating that a free to grow stand of timber has been established under subsection (3) of this section and identifying the location of the timber. Upon request of the owner and payment of any applicable fee, the county clerk in the county wherein the parcel is located shall record the certificate as specified under ORS 205.130 (Recording duties of county clerk).


A person who notifies the State Forester and requests certification shall provide an accurate plat of the parcel or portion planted under subsection (3) of this section to the State Forester as well as photographs that accurately depict the condition of the land prior to planting.


The State Forester may, by rule, establish a fee or schedule of fees adequate to cover such necessary expenses incurred by the State Forester in conducting inspection and certification activities. Fees may be charged to the person requesting certification.


(a) Except as provided in subsection (3) of this section, all forest practices conducted on the planted parcel or portion thereof shall be subject to the provisions of ORS 527.610 (Short title) to 527.770 (Good faith compliance with best management practices not violation of water quality standards), 527.990 (Criminal penalties) (1) and 527.992 (Civil penalties).


No parcel or portion of such parcel shall be subject to the provisions of subsections (3) and (5) of this section more than once. [1995 c.266 §1; 2001 c.340 §2]
Note: 526.490 (Afforestation of certain idle lands) was enacted into law by the Legislative Assembly but was not added to or made a part of ORS chapter 526 or any series therein by legislative action. See Preface to Oregon Revised Statutes for further explanation.
Last accessed
May. 15, 2020