While nature can often take its course when it comes to forests.

While nature can often take its course when it comes to forests. So it is also important to use various types of timber harvesting from time to time. Whether it is a logging operation, clearing land for a building project. I mean or simply a landowner wanting to harvest timber for firewood, it’s crucial to choose the correct method based on your needs. To help you make the best decision, here are four common timber harvesting methods and what they involve.

Clearcutting

Although it may not look very good to you or others once it’s done, clearcutting is a timber harvesting process that offers many benefits. Often used in areas where wildfires are common or pose a threat, clearcutting involves cutting down every tree in the habitat, regardless of its type or size. Done in both large and small areas, this method is used quite often in pine forests to stimulate new growth.

Seed-Tree

A great alternative to clearcutting, the seed-tree approach has trees being left about here and there within a forest, with the hope they will eventually seed the forest and produce new trees in the years ahead. As the new trees begin to grow and take shape, you can choose to either leave them to continue growing or decide to harvest them, whichever you think is best.

Shelterwood

This system is a timber harvesting method similar to the seed-tree system. It relies on more trees being left to grow than are left when doing the seed-tree harvesting method. As the older trees are left to grow, you will then perform multiple harvests within the forest. In fact, you will probably perform up to three harvests of the area. Like doing so under the canopy of the older, more established trees. This method typically happens in pine forests. The shelterwood timber harvesting method is primarily for forests containing large amounts of hemlock, oak, and birch trees.

Selection System

The selection system is just as its name sounds. This method takes only small groups of trees or maybe only individual trees from a habitat. Done about every 10 years, this method produces very favorable results. That’s because it leaves trees of all sizes and ages growing in a forest. Used in areas primarily composed of maple and beech trees, the selection system often greatly improves conditions within a forest.

Always pay close attention to your timber harvesting goals. These harvesting methods will produce different results both now and in the years ahead. By doing so, you’ll have a habitat that meets your needs.

Author: Brooke Chaplan