Looking for tree varieties for timber and forest. We have I believe fir and lodge pole. Not much variety, there are areas of dry semi arid. All the way to heavy moist, we are looking at the dryer portions. Was going to get pinyon pine and juniper looking for 10 more varieties. Was hoping that mesquite would grow but not sure, and I have not found any one growing it this far north. I am definitely going to plant prickly pear. Any other under story, which are edible would be great.
The higher moisture areas are relatively easy but the dry portions. Create more difficulty with selection cause of the how far north we are. Aspect for the property is north west, and west. South facing here is completely dry, we have 3 springs. One runs year round so it is better to not have straight southern exposure.
I would think about peaches, apricots, and nectarines. They will grow better in a dry area like E. Wash than western. Most of our traditional fruittrees are hardy, so apple, pear, plum, cherry should be fine.
I don't grow timber trees so I wouldn't know on that one. Many medicinals and berries grow better in cold areas than hot. Rhodiola, Schisandra, hascap, hardy and arctic kiwi, cloud berrries come to mind.
When I bought land in Stevens County, I had to have a forester evaluate the property and write up a management plan to maintain the timber production tax status. I'm at a lower elevation of 1900' and it's right on the edge of zone 5/6. I explained that I hoped to grow a lot of osage orange (as a hedgerow/fence around at least fruit/nut trees to hold back deer) and black locust and red maple for coppice firewood. With the lower rainfall he recommended I avoid the maple but the other 2 would be fine. Both of these can handle zone 4, as well as poor soil conditions. You can grow them from seeds very affordably, and black locust grows pretty fast, and is a nitrogen fixer.
Black and honey locust are great, I have seeds and I'm planning on planting in the fall. Been trying to find a oak to plant for mast production. But it's hard most are not toleratant of the cold. I have considered Osage orange but the placement of my proposed hedgerows seems to dry but I may give it a try. Hedgerow plants for drier climate would be great. I really want mesquite, and prickly pear.
The biggest problem seems to be the combination of cold and dry. Alot of suggested plants for drier are Mediterranean can't take the cold. I want to add more diversity to the existing varieties, with an aim to more food production. Also long term for timber to build with and craft.
Thank you for your comments were there any suggestions for the timber stand?
I have mostly ponderosa and lodgepole currently, he didn't see any disease issues so the plan is to plant the hardwoods I want, and in 5 years look to remove marketable trees. For my plans, that's removing trees around 14-16" DBH for the posts, beams, and girders. I figure I can get 2-3 pieces of the right length from each tree, so probably 10 trees or so in total for that.
I also have a 34" DBH tree that may add another inch or so in the next few years, if I make an Alaskan mill I could turn that trunk into tabletops, countertops, shelving, square beams, and anything else needing milled wood (assuming it doesn't kill me when I fell it, it's a monster of a tree). I doubt it has much more growing potential, and if I leave it alone it could get sickly and rot.
Found a place with prickly pear for sale still looking for more information on shrubs. I have a bunch of seeds I'm going to try. And I'm thinking of trying some varieties of cypress,and definitely the pinyon pine along with a few other varieties of pine may be the best options. On the ridge top planning on some mugo pine. Dose any one know of any other cactus which can grow in a zone 4-5? I'm also going to get a couple 100 lartch/tamarack to plant out. With the seasonal drop of needles harvested to improve the soil.