The Pacific Northwest is an important timber‐producing region (20.9 million ha forestland) with highly variable ecological conditions, tree species, forest productivity, and management methods. Over the last decade, forest practices have changed because of social pressures for science‐based ecosystem management, changes in state forest practices laws, new plans for management of state and federal lands, green certification and owner attitudes. However, there is little tendency for managers to adopt the classical uneven‐aged methods developed in Europe. Instead, practices such as green tree retention, variable retention thinning, heavy thinning with underplanting, and protection of riparian buffers are being implemented in what is called ecosystem management. These practices will create more structurally diverse stands and landscapes but not necessarily managed uneven‐aged forests. Foresters could benefit from European experience with uneven‐aged management by starting with tested basic principles and modifying practices based on research and adaptive management.