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How many here PLANT trees as well as cut them?

Post in 'The Green Room' started by Outdoorsman, Jan 6, 2008.

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  1. Outdoorsman

    Outdoorsman New Member

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    Don't get me wrong guys, I cut a good number of trees myself. but I also planted 250 trees and shrubs this past year & expect I'll plant and additional 300+ this coming spring. I'm working on a investment/wildlife tree area you see.

    I also expect I'll cut a couple dozen trees down this next summer. Ash trees, killed by the Emerald Ash Borer or American Elm tress that have died. I always cut dead timber first.

    I don't own a wood burner, but father & brother in laws do, as does a good friend at work. So I help them out, and get in a great workout to.

    So how many of you guys do plantings in your woodlots to improve the mix of trees or type of trees in your woodlots? I'd also be interested in what types of trees you plant and find best for burning if different?

    I'm planning on planting a mix of: hybrid Poplars, hybrid Walnut, Black Cherry, hybrid Oaks this coming spring. Perhaps even some hybrid Chestnut trees if I can find some that are pretty close to the original native American Chestnut that the Chestnut blight killed a century ago.

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  2. DiscoInferno

    DiscoInferno Minister of Fire

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    On our MI land the sugar/red maples propagate like weeds, and the beeches do OK, so no need to plant those. The yellow birch I'm thinking of helping along by planting/transplanting and protecting from the deer. Other than a few cherry trees, that's all the hardwood species nature has seen fit to grow on our property; I hadn't really thought of trying to introduce anything new.
  3. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    I plant lots of trees, but not specifically for future firewood. Over the last 12 years have planted more than 35,000 trees. Goal is long term lumber. My firewood is mostly slabs from pine after I saw the logs into lumber, as well as dead trees. Slabs and normal expiration provide more firewood than we can possibly burn. The pine slabs burn great in the wood gassifier (Tarm), but a little hotter than other wood. No creosote evident in the stack.
  4. drizler

    drizler Minister of Fire

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    We keep our place surrounded by trees though we live in the middle of a hay field. I hate cutting down any of them. They truly are the best neighbors. We cut what has to be cut but replace whatever we can.
  5. Outdoorsman

    Outdoorsman New Member

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    I hear you regarding those maple trees being like weeds. Cherry are some of my favorite trees, good for wildlife, and about the best for any fire for a nice aroma.

    If you've no oak trees, but do have some well drained loam or sand, some hybrid oaks are a great investment in the future.

    Still don't grow as fast as the red maples, but faster than a sugar maple. Bur-English is about the fastest growing of the different white oak hybrids. Hawkins oaks, a cross between read & black oak are the fastest I know of for the rad oak side of the oaks family.
  6. mikeathens

    mikeathens New Member

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    I planted 200 white oaks two years ago, 200 pines, burr oaks, and white oaks one year ago, and 3000 white oak, red oak, and white paine this year, along with approx. 300 sprouting white oak acorns this year.

    I don't like to cut healthy trees - most of my wood is coming from large fallen trees on my property - cut up a tall 18" red oak a few weeks ago, got a 24" black locust; still working on a 48" red oak and 24" hickory. Neighbors usually let me get their fallen trees.
  7. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    Hardwoods usually propagate with no problem after you thin out the bigger trees. White pine, which is native to most of the Northeast, is another really good self-propagator. They say if you want to encourage yellow birch propagation, Disco, scarify the soil (dig it up with a dozer or skidder) and try to keep the deer away. Yellow birch tends to do best after clearcuts where the soil has been disturbed. So does cherry, because the seeds can sit dormant for years (or even decades under the right circumstances) until the canopy is opened up.

    I just read today that some of the best trees for carbon sequestration are yellow poplar and beech. I get the beech part, because it grows fast and dense. Yellow poplar, on the other hand, grows fast but isn't very dense for a hardwood. Maybe the fast growth rate makes up for the difference in density.
  8. cbrodsky

    cbrodsky Member

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    Our area is probably severely overcrowded with very tall but thin trees so I figure I'm probably just helping some of the better ones build up a nice canopy.

    In the few cleared areas we have, it seems like nature does the job with saplings coming up everywhere and I just pull out anything that shouldn't be there like stinkwood trees which pop up everywhere.

    Those of you planting hundreds of trees - are you converting a former field, and I assume there is some specialized equipment to speed that?

    -Colin
  9. mikeathens

    mikeathens New Member

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    My property has a history of grazing (dairy farm), and has several pastures that are recovering - slowly- from a hundred years of hooves compacting the soil. Lots of redbud, dogwood, and autumn olive. Of the 3000 trees I planted this past spring, 1700 were done with a dibble bar. I spent 3 hard 8-hour days doing nothing but planting with plenty of blisters, sore muscles, and hallucinations. As for the other 1300, they were planted in a pasture accesible to my tractor. I rented a 3-point planter from the Soil and Water Conservation District, and got those done in about 5 hours.
  10. Corey

    Corey Minister of Fire

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    Kind of funny - around here, they consider the "natural state" of things to be tallgrass prairie. When I talked with the conservation agent about cutting trees on public land around the local lake, I told him I had been taking mainly downed, dead or storm damaged trees, then looking for the old, misshapen or 'wolf' trees and that I didn't think I had cut a 'specimen' tree yet. Just generally trying to preserve the health of the woods in general. I ask him if there is something different he would like me to do. He said, "Ideally, the entire woods would be clearcut down to the shoreline and returned to grassland. I'm just trying to see if I get people cutting enough wood to continue giving permits"

    So to sum it up, they don't want people planting trees and mucking up the prairie! I like the woods much more, though! I'm just glad they don't rewind a couple million years and consider the "natural state" of things to be a shallow inland sea!
  11. Outdoorsman

    Outdoorsman New Member

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    Yes I'm planting into a former field. Specialized equipment = trailer to haul tree seedlings, water, water gel & fertilizer + hand held gas post hole auger for planting holes. Also have 540 John Deere with 42" tiller to prep planting rows & weed. I'm going to try using some tree shelter tubes this year. bought 100 blue X type tubes & look forward to seeing how much they help in early establishment (claims are made of improved growth rates of up to 500% depending on tree type placed in the tubes.) By the time the planting is 12-15yrs old voluntary trees/shrubs & other under story will fill in the open row areas and will look fairly close to natural.

    Not real high tech, but allows me to plant 250+ new trees/shrubs per year.

    Some of the trees/shrubs I plant will have high to good lumber value like the Oaks, Blk Cherry & Blk Walnut trees, others like the elderberry & hazel shrubs are to provide nothing more than wildlife foods & shelter. Conifers make great locations for deer bedding & bird nesting.
  12. wally

    wally New Member

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    very little reason to plant trees here in central new england, unless you are looking for a singular species, with no prospects of it growing "naturally". the idea is to incorporate the appropriate silvicultural techniques at the appropriate time to encourage desired species regeneration. i admit that the "desired species" is usually a mix of species, rather than a single species, but the treatments are generally similar for groups of species. site index and soil characteristics also dictate which species should be target species, and precipitation inputs also matter.

    wally
  13. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    We cut 10 cord last year, and planted 200 trees in the spring. Not really with an eye toward future firewood harvest though. I do some species I know will take (hard maple, red oak) some I THINK will (black locust) and some I really HOPE will (Black Walnut). The selection of hardwood saplings available from my County Soil & Water each spring is limited.

    I also have transplanted oak and maple from a powerline ROW. Those have taken very well in their new homes.

    My latest venture is attempting to grow Black Walnut and Shagbark hickory from seed. They're in the fridge as we speak :coolsmile:

    Now if only all the Aspen were good for something . . .
  14. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Yep, I plant trees. I'm not in to the multiple 100's yet, but I have planted about 120 so far. 30 Norway pines (wind break), and the rest were various hard woods, fruit woods, and flowering trees for the critters. Mind you, this is all in my yard, not intended for wood harvest (at least not for me). They are all native species that I have purchased thru the county water and soil conservation program. Kinda makes a person feel good, that what I planted will produce more oxygen then I will ever consume.
  15. Nofossil

    Nofossil Moderator Emeritus

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    I've planted and transplanted specific species to specific locations, but in the area where I harvest firewood, the problem is overcrowding and undesirable species. We have a big problem with buckthorn, and one of my goals is to eradicate it to let the native species thrive, especially hardwoods.
  16. wally

    wally New Member

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    if you're a birder, it's great as a source of food for ruffed grouse in the winter. the buds are high-valued for them (protein). aspen is also needed for woodcock habitat, especially younger stands of it.

    wally
  17. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    ISeeDeadBTUs - low blow on this one. Pound for pound, wood is wood. I know the lower density of aspen means fewer pounds per load, but it produces just as much heat per pound. I burn 95% aspen in my wood stove, and ever I finish up the pine in the gasifier, aspen will be the wood of choice. It's inexpensive, easy to split, dries fast, easy to handle, cleaner than most other barky woods, regenerates rapidly, grows fast, sustainable, and reminds one of the Colorado mountain ski slopes.
  18. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    Well, the aspen I have will ALWAYS produce 'smoke' in my GW. I only bring it home when the TruckChick goes with me to get wood. It's inconceivable to her to leave wood in the woods, especially when it is so light, making it easy to carry.

    Tell ya what . . . I'll trade you all my Aspen for any hard maple, oak, black locust, apple you have. Even at 2 for 1 :cheese:

    I read somewhere that aspen is the most common tree in the USA. And our ski slopes here in the East have way more ice than Aspen :wow:
  19. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    deliver all you want, and i'll load you up for the trip home . . . if I had any of those woods. :)
  20. ISeeDeadBTUs

    ISeeDeadBTUs Guest

    LOL, well, I a'int drivin' to MN to swap my Aspen for your Pine, Dude!!
  21. jpl1nh

    jpl1nh Minister of Fire

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    Along the lines of Wally's thinking, I was intrigued by a picture taken around 1900 looking northward from the tower at T-Hall, the administrative building at the University of NH. It was basically field as far as you could see. I went to school at UNH and have lived in this area ever since. While now a semi surbarban-rural area, if you took a picture today looking north, it would be perceived as forest as far as the eye could see. In the northeast, trees are predominantly the natural state of the land. No need to plant them, give them a brief opportunity and they will grow in relatively predictable succesion and ultimately a wonderfully diverse mix. I seldom plant trees and I seldom cut them though I take advantage of trees others wish cut for whatever reason and I use what dies. I do strongly believe we need to give them space and protect them. Given an opportunity, trees do just fine all by themselves.
  22. Eric Johnson

    Eric Johnson Mod Emeritus

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    One of the things that impressed me most about the forests of the Northeast when I moved out here from Wisconsin is the large number of stone fences running through the woods, especially in Southern New England. Now, who would build a stone fence through a forest? Nobody. Those were all farm fields at one time. Now they're thriving forests and woodlots, created in short order when people quit tending the fields.
  23. RedRanger

    RedRanger New Member

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    No need. Always lots of douglas fir seedlings and cedar seedlings sprouting all over the place. Actually, quite the opposite, more thinning, than planting. If you have enough of an establised forest, they will gladly reseed themselves.
  24. jpl1nh

    jpl1nh Minister of Fire

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    For all of us living in the more rural areas the notion of planting trees to replace what we cut is totally unnecessary. The first wave of deforestation in the US was the pursuit of crop land in the great forests east of the Mississipi. As the need for that crop land decreased with the exploitation of the wide open great plains area, the eastern forests have quickly reclaimed much of their former habitat. The second wave of clearing is for urban development, a pursuit that threatens a much more permanent displacement of the forests. Some might argue such destructive practices as coal mining by mountain top removal comes close to a permanant forest destruction as well. I would argue that the forest systems are one of the great forces in our favor in the mitigation of high atmospheric CO2 levels. As such it seems to me reasonable to think of the suburban developments as a reasonable though weaker substitute for forests. Well planted, they can accomodate tree populations approaching native mature forests. A good example is Levittown PA, one of the first great housing developments in this country, created in the fields of Eastern PA. At the time of it's development there was nary a tree to be found. Sixty years later, shade trees make this once barren housing tract a pleasant and tranquil semi surburban woodland. In this type of situation however, virtually all of the trees were planted. In the future, if development proceeds at it's current pace, we might indeed all need to be more mindful of planting trees.
  25. tnunemac

    tnunemac New Member

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    I'd happily trade my lodgepole pine for your aspen. Here in the Colorado mountains, there's dire predictions of every mature lodgepole falling prey to pine beetles within 5 years, so I'm encouraging my aspen all I can. At least I should have plenty to burn for a while.

    Back on topic, you can encourage aspen colonization just by giving them space to colonize, at least where I live. No need to plant. And overall it should be carbon-neutral.
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