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Overstory Retirement Program

 
Daniel Worth
Posts: 31
Location: Northglenn, Colorado
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I just wrote a new article about using large over-story trees as a retirement program by selling high quality timber.

500 Year Farm Blog: Not All Permaculture is Food

Let me know what you think.
 
Sam White
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Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
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forest garden trees woodworking
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Hey Daniel,

Nice article. I'd like to do something here similar in Wales so I'll be looking forward to more! One note on the coppicing; the older a tree gets the less likely it is to respond well to being coppiced so this might be something to bear in mind. However, I am writing from a UK perspective so trees native to the USA or other parts of the world may respond differently.

Sam
 
duane hennon
gardener
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Location: western pennsylvania zone 5/a
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David Jacke is writing a book on copicing, due.......??

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=me_2hn-GkyE

Introduction to Agroforestry
 
Daniel Worth
Posts: 31
Location: Northglenn, Colorado
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Sam White wrote:Hey Daniel,

Nice article. I'd like to do something here similar in Wales so I'll be looking forward to more! One note on the coppicing; the older a tree gets the less likely it is to respond well to being coppiced so this might be something to bear in mind. However, I am writing from a UK perspective so trees native to the USA or other parts of the world may respond differently.

Sam


It's a error on my part to make it seem that it would be coppiced after full growth. The thought was that if you didn't want to simply harvest the whole tree you'd coppice it early and allow the coppice to grow to full height. This is less desirable for large timber as the trunks don't grow as strait grained. If the wood is to be turned into smaller caving work or worked on a lathe this might even be desirable though. With the time scale involved it's hard to tell the market at the time of harvest so coppicing might not be the best tool for this particular job as more traditional timber would likely fetch a high value and sell quicker.
 
Cj Sloane
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Location: Vermont, off grid for 22 years!
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Coppicing serves some valuable functions, including close plantings. If you want 100 great trees you are much better off planting 1000 and thinning as you go. Many of the thinnings can be used/sold as fence posts depending on the species.

A mistake I made early on was to only plant trees based on their full grown size.
 
Sam White
Posts: 221
Location: Caerphilly, Wales, UK
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forest garden trees woodworking
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Thanks for the clarification Daniel.

Cj raises a good point. Coppice with standards makes perfect sense permaculturally and fits nicely into your non-food forest thinking. That way you retain the long term income from the timber trees whilst retaining opportunities for shorter term income generation from the coppice.

Additionally, the growth of the coppice should help with a) 'forcing' the timber trees to grow straight and b) reduce the amount of snedding required to ensure high quality timber by reducing the amount of branching on the lower stems.

Appologies if these are conclusions you've drawn already! Coppice with standards used to be relatively commonplace in the UK but I'm not sure how widespread it is in other parts of the world.

Sam
 
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