Full Vigor Forestry
Sustainable (really!) Forest Management from the Forest Owner's Point of View
Our forest is a living solar energy collector. We manage our timber so that the leaves of the trees that make up the forest fully utilize the available sunlight to grow high quality wood products. This is accomplished by thinning the stems to get the optimum spacing between the various sizes and species of trees.
A tree is a living solar collector. We manage each tree so that the leaves of the crown utilize the available sunlight to grow high quality wood on the trunk. I look at each tree as a funnel. A funnel with a large opening at the top can collect a lot of energy and a skinny little funnel with a small opening at the top produces little growth.
Deciduous trees should look like a typical funnel with the opening at the top being about one third of the height of the tree. This should produce a growth ring of between one eighth and one quarter of an inch, giving a tree diameter growth of one quarter to one half inch each year.
Conifer trees should look like a funnel, but with the cone upside down on the stem. These trees collect the energy from the sides of the cone. The width of the crown should be about one quarter of the total height of the tree. Diameter growth is the key factor in determining proper spacing.
Secret To Success - A Simple Spacing Guide
Using the one-third crown width to total tree height ratio, you can make a simple tree spacing guide. In nearly every forest, this rule quickly shows that the forest is way too crowded. When trees of all ages and heights are present in a forest, this guide shows the spacing between trees of similar sizes. We would never cut all the extra trees to get to the spacing of this guide at one time - it is a long term goal. Tending the forest - thinning a little each year, is much better than cutting too much at one time.
Full Vigor Forestry Crop Tree Spacing Guide
TREE DIAMETER SPACING TREES/ACRE
1-8 inches 10 feet 440
10" 17ft 150
12" 20ft 110
14" 25ft 70
16" 28ft 55
18" 32ft 42
20" 35ft 36
22" 38ft 30
24" 42ft 25
26" 45ft 22
28" 48ft 20
30" 50ft 16