West Virginia - Wild and Wonderful

About West Virginia

West Virginia is noted for its mountains and diverse topography, its historically significant logging and coal mining industries, and its political and labor history. It is one of the most densely karstic areas in the world, making it a choice area for recreational caving and scientific research.


West Virginia is full of opportunity for any business with a growing economy and a highly dedicated workforce. Whether you are running an existing business or thinking of starting a new business you can find all of the information you need throughout this business section.


West Virginia is fortunate to have a tremendous education system with a high standard of excellence. Please use the information provided here to learn more about the wealth of educational opportunities in our great state.


West Virginia is home to one of the finest workforces in the country based on our hard work and commitment to quality. Whether you are looking for new job opportunities, enhancing your job skills or researching future employment trends you can find all of the information you need throughout this employment section.


West Virginia offers the perfect balance of a rural and urban setting that suits a variety of lifestyles. This is a state where you can go whitewater rafting in the morning, go to an art exhibit in the afternoon and attend a concert in the evening. Whether you just moved to the Mountain State or your family has been here since it was founded, you are part of our community.


Maintaining proper health is vital to ensuring the highest quality of life possible. West Virginia strives to provide one of the best health care systems in the country that is affordable and available to all residents of the state. This section contains numerous resources to assist you in accessing the health care services provided in the state.


Exhilarate in the lasting beauty and natural wonder scattered throughout West Virginia. From unmatched outdoor recreation to world-class resorts, breathtaking scenery and a variety of cultural and historic attractions, West Virginia is an ideal spot to plan your next adventure. Discover for yourself what makes West Virginia wild and wonderful.

 Department of Agriculture Including More Counties in Public-Private Pest Program

One of West Virginia’s most worrisome forest pests will have fewer places to hide in 2014.

The West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA) has announced it will greatly expand the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid (HWA) Cooperative Pilot Project, started in 2011 to provide private landowners with an affordable option to save hemlock trees from HWA, a non-native insect that feeds on Hemlock trees.

The project originally covered only the area around the New and Gauley Rivers. The 2013-2014 HWA Program will expand to the 46 West Virginia counties HWA is known to occur: Barbour, Berkeley, Boone, Braxton, Cabell, Clay, Fayette, Grant, Greenbrier, Hampshire, Hardy, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson, Kanawha, Lewis, Lincoln, Logan, Marion, Mason, Mercer, Mineral, Mingo, Monongalia, Monroe, Morgan, McDowell, Nicholas, Pendleton, Pocahontas, Preston, Putnam, Raleigh, Randolph, Ritchie, Roane, Summers, Taylor, Tucker, Tyler, Upshur, Wayne, Webster, Wirt, Wood and Wyoming counties.

West Virginia Commissioner of Agriculture Walt Helmick said the program is the only one of its type in the country.

“HWA treatment has been done in parks and on other public property, but this is the first one that is working to limit this pest on private property,” said Commissioner Helmick. “We found there was interest in areas that were not included in the program last year, so we decided to expand the program.”

HWA is an insect that appears as white, woolly masses on the underside of hemlock needles and eventually kills the tree, according to Tim Tomon, Forest Entomologist with WVDA’s Plant Industries Division.

“Hemlock trees are an important component of West Virginia ecosystems besides their value as lumber, but even more so for their unmatched aesthetic appeal,” said Tomon. “They also create habitat for songbirds and other wildlife, including shade that keeps water at trout-friendly temperatures.”

Interested landowners have until September 30 to apply for the program. All work will be performed by employees of the WVDA.

Treatments should protect trees for about four years. Landowners accepted for the program must pay either $1.50 per inch of diameter at breast height (DBH) to $2 per DBH inch depending on treatment type. The type of treatment depends upon distance of the tree to open water.

Landowners must complete an application and submit it with a map of their property, along with a $100 deposit that will be applied to treatment costs. WVDA will evaluate landowner sites to ensure they meet the following project qualifications:
  • Only private lands within the project area are eligible.
  • More than 50 percent canopy cover of hemlocks.
  • A woodlot with a minimum of five acres. Adjacent and otherwise eligible landowners may cooperate to meet the minimum acreage requirement.
  • Landowners with less than five acres may qualify if the proposed treatment area is adjacent to land being managed for HWA.
  • Trees must have more than 50 percent foliage.
  • Trees may not have been treated within the last four years.
  • Treatment must not pose a safety risk to WVDA field personnel.
  • Pesticides used in treatments must be purchased directly by WVDA.

For more information, contact Assistant Director Quentin “Butch” Sayers at qsayers@wvda.us or at 304-788-1066; or Forest Entomologist Tim Tomon at ttomon@wvda.us or at 304-637-0290. Applications and a program brochure may be downloaded at www.wvagriculture.org   

Contact Information

Assistant Director Quentin “Butch” Sayers or Forest Entomologist Tim Tomon
304-788-1066 or 304-637-0290
qsayers@wvda.us or ttomon@wvda.us