Brad Withrow-Robinson, Forestry & Natural Resources Extension Agent, Benton, Linn and Polk Counties.

DSCN3241Continuing on the general theme of young stand management and especially the need for thinning, I’d like to look at strategies for thinning a young stand. Let’s start with some things to keep in mind about Young Stand Thinning or YST (also called precommercial thinning or PCT):

  • The idea of young stand thinning (YST) is to avoid harmful overcrowding later by removing excess trees early on.
  • The impact of thinning out a tree is very local. The overall stocking level (trees per acre) can be misleading. It is the spacing among immediate neighbors that counts.
  • The greatest benefit of YST is increased growing space rather than selection among trees. Creating more growing space to benefit as many leave trees as possible is the primary goal. Culling is secondary.
  • YST is key to achieving longer rotations and many non-timber objectives many family forest landowners desire.

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By Amy Grotta, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension – Columbia, Washington & Yamhill Counties

oceanspray floweringIf one of your land management goals is to provide wildlife habitat, you’ll want to consider keeping a mix of native shrub species on your property. Shrubs provide a host of services to wildlife, including shelter or cover, nesting space, and food from their twigs, leaves, flowers, and fruit. With thought given to species selection and location, retaining existing shrubs or planting them can benefit wildlife without compromising timber growth or forest operations. This is the third article in our Shrubs for Wildlife series (see others here and here). Each article highlights one species that benefits wildlife in northwest Oregon forests.

Species Name: Oceanspray

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Stephen Fitzgerald flagging a stake found on the presumed property line
Stephen Fitzgerald flagging a stake found on the presumed property line

By Stephen Fitzgerald, OSU Research Forests Director and Extension Silviculture Specialist, and Amy Grotta, OSU Extension Forestry & Natural Resources – Columbia, Washington & Yamhill Counties

Management activities are underway at the Rubie P. Matteson Demonstration Forest near Hagg Lake. As any new property owner can attest, the first year of property management entails a mix of addressing immediate needs and thinking about longer-term goals and plans.  This year, our activities are focused on mapping, inventory and rehabilitation as well as readying the property for public use. Below is a summary of recent and ongoing projects on the forest. Continue reading

By Brandy Saffell and Amy Grotta, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension

Snowberry leaves and fruit in the fall
Snowberry leaves and fruit in the fall. Photo: Pat Breen, OSU

If one of your land management goals is to provide wildlife habitat, you’ll want to consider keeping a mix of native shrub species on your property. Shrubs provide a host of services to wildlife, including shelter or cover, nesting space, and food from their twigs, leaves, flowers, and fruit. With thought given to species selection and location, retaining existing shrubs or planting them can benefit wildlife without compromising timber growth or forest operations. This is the second article in our Shrubs for Wildlife series (first is here). Each article will highlight one species that benefits wildlife in northwest Oregon forests.

Species Name: Common snowberry – Symphoricarpos albus Continue reading

Brad Withrow-Robinson, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension

 

Our final days of the tour included meetings with the local landowners’ cooperative in Telemark County and visits to two specialty sawmills.

The Tinnoset sawmill specializes in shaping large logs for traditional style log homes. Most are sold to builders, but they do some custom building on site too.

Nearly completed home on site.
Nearly completed home on site.
Harald explaining the building process.
Harald explaining the building process.

 

 Getting a closer look at construction details.

Getting a closer look at construction details.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Svenneby family sawmill has been working with leading architects and looking for less traditional uses of wood, including many exotic (USA) species. We lucked into a presentation by nationally acclaimed architect Einar Jarmund who talked about the expanding role and popularity of wood in both commercial and residential buildings in Norway and showed a number of projects done by his firm  ( http://www.jva.no/ ) using materials developed and delivered by the Svenneby mill.

 

Turid Svenneby discusses weathering of oiled oak siding with trour member Claude Rowley.
Turid Svenneby discusses weathering of oiled oak siding with tour member Claude Rowley.
The Svenneby mill and farm is yet another example of a multi generation, multi-enterprise business.
The Svenneby mill and farm is yet another example of a multi generation, multi-enterprise business. Next to Kirk (ID) are Thorvald, Turid and Ole Svenneby.

 

 

 

 

We could not help but noticing how common and prominently wood was being used in Norway, and particularly as architectural and visual elements around Oslo.  Why does wood seem less used, less celebrated here?

 

A building on the Oslo waterfront are sided with wood prepared by the Svenneby mill.
A building on the Oslo waterfront area sided with wood prepared by the Svenneby mill.
Another, renovated building on the waterfront.
Another, renovated building on the waterfront.

 

 

 

Large wood laminated structural elements visible in the airport.
Large wood laminated structural elements visible in the airport.

 

Smaller wood furnishing and finish elements abound in the airport
Smaller wood furnishing and finish elements abound in the airport

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brad Withrow-Robinson. OSU Forestry & Natural Resources agent, Benton, Linn and Polk Counties.

In the fjord regions of Norway, both forestry and farming are limited to the area between the rock and the water.   The bottom of the valley is farmed, and the narrow toes of the valley walls are forested. Many communities were not connected by roads until the 1920s.  It is beautiful country, but it strikes me as a beautiful place to starve. It is not hard to see why so many people left for America in the late 19th Century.  Those who stayed looked for alternative sources of income to supplement farm incomes/earnings.

Looking up valley and seeing patches of spruce and pine on lower slopes of valley wall.
Looking up valley and seeing patches of spruce and pine on lower slopes of valley wall.

 

Local County Forester Rune K. discussing management of Spruce in the Valley.
Local County Forester Rune K. discussing management of Spruce in the Valley.

 

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Brad Withrow-Robinson, OSU Forestry & Natural resources Extension.

 

One of our visits was to a cooperative forest jointly owned by about a dozen families from Bengtshedens village. The Mellanskog landowner cooperative also has a significant share of ownership.

One of our visits was to a cooperative forest jointly owned by about a dozen families from Bengtshedens village. The Mellanskog landowner cooperative also has a significant share of ownership. We were greeted on arrival by two family owners with coffee and cinnamon rolls before touring the forest.
We were greeted on arrival by two of the family owners with coffee and cinnamon rolls before touring the forest.

 

Mellanskog Forester Lars Eric explaining management practices such as regeneration, thinning and fertilization in a 100-year-old stand of Scotts pine.
Mellanskog Forester Lars Eric explaining management practices such as regeneration, thinning and fertilization in a 100-year-old stand of Scotts pine.

 

 

 

We visited the Log Max factory in Grangarde, innovative producers of logging processing heads.
We visited the Log Max factory in Grangarde, innovative producers of logging processing heads.
Our group observing Log Max and Eco Log equipment in their native habitat of central Sweden.
Our group observing Log Max and Eco Log equipment in their native habitat of central Sweden.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Regeneration of pine with seed tree cuts is common in Sweden and Norway.
Regeneration of pine with seed tree cuts is common in Sweden and Norway.

 

 

Brad Withrow-Robinson, Forestry and Natural Resources Extension agent for Benton, Linn and Polk Counties.

Dalarna County was the seat of a very old and important copper and iron mining industry, an early source of wealth and power for Sweden.  We visted the Falun copper mine, active since the 10th century and a UNESCO world heritage site.

Preparing to head down into the Falun Copper mine.
Preparing to head down into the Falun Copper mine.

Why is that part of our forestry tour?

Forest products were a critical part of early mining industry, which needed massive amounts of charcoal and round wood to extract and process the metals. Forestlands near the mine were hard pressed to provide these products.  The mine is also the birthplace of world’s oldest stock company, which eventually became large forest and paper corporation Stora Enso.

Over-exploitation of forest resources by the mid-16th century led to a series of perhaps the world’s oldest forest protection rules.  In 1607 King Charles IX issued a ban on logging and charcoal production within a one-mile radius of the Falun mine (using the old Swedish mile, about 7 English miles). It was named the “Peace Mile” in hopes it would reduce disputes over unregulated charcoal production.

However it was not until 1754 that the surveyor Johan Brandberg finished measuring 112 points around the circumference of a the circle, marking each with stones.

from: http://www.fredsmilen.se/RosenGammalKarta.aspx
from: http://www.fredsmilen.se/RosenGammalKarta.aspx
Marker stone number 112 in the Peace mile ring, marked with an arrow.
Marker stone number 112 in the Peace mile ring, marked with an arrow.

See old and new maps of the circle drawn by Brandberg at:

http://www.fredsmilen.se/RosenGammalKarta.aspx

and

http://www.fredsmilen.se/Default.aspx

 

 

 

 

 

Brad Withrow-Robinson, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources Extension, Benton, Linn and Polk Counties

 

A New Approach

Dalagård farm & forest retreat is a large working forest owned by Cecilia and Leif Öster. These first -generation landowners are developing an active silvo-trouism enterprise to diversify the farm’s income and promote its sustainability. Forest products and hunting leases are other significant income streams.

We enjoyed a wonderful Swedish Mid-Summer style lunch while enjoying the beautiful setting.
We enjoyed a wonderful Swedish Mid-Summer style lunch while enjoying the beautiful setting.

 

Leif explains alternative forest management practices used near the guest complex. This is aimed at balancing the guests aesthetic expectations of forests with broader forest production objectives.
Leif explains alternative forest management practices used near the guest complex. This is aimed at balancing the guests aesthetic expectations of forests with broader forest production objectives.

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Brad Withrow-Robinson, OSU Forestry & Natural Resources agent

Our group of 26 family woodland owners arrived in Sweden this week at the start of the Scandinavia Forestry Tour.

The tour is organized by the Oregon Woodlands Coop along with Washington County Woodlands Association and OSU Forestry &

Woodland owners visiting the Skansen historic museum in Stockholm Sweden
Woodland owners visiting the Skansen historic museum in Stockholm Sweden

Natural Resources Extension.

The purpose of the tour is to look at forestry practices in this part of the world, meet fellow family forest landowners and focus particularly on the strong role of landowner cooperatives in both Sweden and Norway.

Most of our group is from Oregon, but we have people from four other US states, as well as South Africa rounding out the group.

This is my first electronic post card from the tour, where I will try to share some of the things we are seeing and learning here.

 

Old traditional buildings at Skansen
Old traditional buildings at Skansen Museum

 

DSCN3584

View of Stockholm
View of Stockholm