I really enjoyed your Ted Talk and the Full Plane House documentary. Thank you!
I'm very curious about the urban forestry planning from the perspective of harvesting and replanting. For example in your Ted Talk you showed a picture of a park with well developed mature trees. It doesn't seem ecologically healthy or esthetically pleasing to harvest all the trees there at the same time. So what would a good succession strategy be at that location? How would proper succession (harvesting replanting) be applied to the Intel forest or the Plane House? How is a cycle of all trees then all stumps avoided? I imagine some trees are harvested before they have reached maximum growth, some at maximum growth and some after with replanting immediately following, but how does one pick the correct trees to harvest with replanting in mind?
Thank you for making yourself available to answer questions.
Hi Vaughn, thanks for the great questions! I think long term harvesting and replanting of trees could be done on many different time scales. I am personally opposed to clear cutting for a few reasons. First of it looks terrible. Second, there are always pretty serious impacts on the soil and local watersheds. Third when all trees are removed there are higher maintenance costs to control weeds.
As far as intervals of harvesting trees go, I envision finding a sweet spot where it makes economic sense for a log truck to show up and be able to leave with a full load-around 10-20 trees depending on age and size. I think planting a variety of trees (minimum 3-5 species mix) at every site is important to allow opportunities to harvest at different rates. I think it will be important to start with many fast growing, pioneer trees such as Red Alder or Black Locust where they can yield a decent amount of lumber in 30-40 years. As some of these trees are thinned out over a period of 10-20 years, climax tree species can be planted for the next generation. I think it will be crucial to keep the ecosystem and forest intact. I think there should be at least a 100 year management plan if not 200 years. Also, some trees should not be removed for 100 years and maybe 10-20% should grow as long as they are healthy which could mean 1,000 years. Most lumber operations I know seem to focus on tree farming where patches of forest are clear cut or so much selective thinning is done that no trees ever live past 50 years. A 100 year old tree is far more valuable. A 1,000 year old tree extremely valuable.
I am in the process of creating a test site with a local county government outside Portland. Rates of harvest has been a frequent topic. I don't have a magic answer at this point. In the next two years I hope to have this more flushed out.
Are you speaking at or coming to the PermacultureVoices conference? I'm in North San Diego County so I'd love to meet up with you - maybe I can talk to some guitar makers before the conference and get you connected with them.
I'm really loving all the discussions. Really loved your Ted Talk and the podcast with Permaculture Voices.
Are you speaking at or coming to the Permaculture Voices conference? I'm in North San Diego County so I'd love to meet up with you - maybe I can talk to some guitar makers before the conference and get you connected with them.
I've been pondering planting trees for coppicing -- both firewood and pole/fence stock on the land.
I'd like to do it in such a way that I can harvest these via hand-drawn cart, and use the plantings for privacy screens and for wind, dust, and sound mitigation from the nearby "town shed", where the highway department has all its heavy equipment, gravel pit, sand and salt piles, etc... (these are common in rural New England towns).
It occurs to me that this sort of coppice plantation is another approach that would help provide urban lumber -- or maybe the smaller-diameter stock I'm looking for. Still achieves shade and biomass production and carbon sequestration, but probably not larger diameter saw logs.
If someone on this thread has ideas about planning this sort of coppice plantation, please let me know.
Common Weeds And Wild Edibles Of The World (HD video)