Virtual Tour of the Forest: Introduction

Virginia's forests are a renewable natural resource of great importance to all of us. Trees provide both economic value and environmental benefits. Forests moderate our climate, provide clean water and scenic beauty, recreational opportunities and homes for wildlife. Forests provide jobs, spiritual renewal and improve our quality of life. Virginia's forest are ever changing ... each turn in the path brings new encounters with different plants, insects and wildlife.

Virginia's forests are diverse ... from the extensive loblolly pine forests of the flat, low-lying coastal plain, through the patchwork of pines, interspersed among the hardwood forests of the rolling hills of the piedmont, to the white pine and upland hardwood forests of the western mountains.

Come take a walk through the forest and discover the many fascinating aspects of nature.

In the Southeastern United States pine trees usually live about half as long as hardwood trees. That is why Virginia's forests either have all pine trees or all hardwood trees. Occasionally pines and hardwoods can be found together ... however all forests are constantly changing as they grow over time. Sometimes the changes are swift as a result of fire, ice, wind or timber harvest. Sometimes these changes are centipede slow. Choose any forest type to discover how that forest ecosystem developed, how it can be kept healthy and which animals live there.

Introduction l Young Pine l Middle Age Pine l Old Pine l Young Hardwood l Middle Age Hardwood l Old Hardwood l Forest Products l Fire l Harvesting and Reforestation l Riparian Forest l Special Use Forest l Urban Forest l Water Quality l SOLs, Lesson Plans l Script of this Tour