Amuri Hills Forest Partnership
7 March 2004
We are pleased to report as follows:
Forest Stand Progress
Your forest stands are fine despite a season of wild climatic fluctuations. A cool wet spring then two very warm months of summer without any rain. Then a cool wet February leaving the feeling autumn is here. Some gales were thrown into the mix too. Still, it could’ve been worse, as a look further north reminds us.
Your Radiata pine clearwood regime HF2 at Hopefield Station was thinned last month to 330 stems per hectare, virtually all high pruned. That completes establishment & silviculture of this stand. Only the monitoring of health & growth is required from now on. To assist this we will turn some of the sample plots there into what are known as Permanent Sample Plots (‘PSPs’).
Further pruning of GT1 at Glens of Tekoa has just been completed and the same is underway at Leslie Hills right now. This will continue for at least another month and then a partial thinning of both stands is likely, the degree and timing of which will depend on the advice of your partnership’s Consultant.
Your two Douglas-fir stands at Glens of Tekoa, approaching nine years old, now have the appearance of closed canopy forests for the first time, despite actually not being at that point yet. We will put in PSPs this year and compare the data we get to original forecasts. In due course there will be the option of confirming the original regime plan or going for a ‘regime change’ if forecasts and risk-benefit analysis show you would gain from a new regime. (Silviculture and geo-politics are similar eh!)
Good News on Douglas-fir
At a recent Douglas-fir Coop meeting we learned of two items that are pleasing. Firstly the BIA, although tightening the Building Code restrictions on the use of untreated timber decided to give untreated Douglas-fir the green light for some significant framing applications. There still remain some unwarranted requirements for treatment but there is also an ‘Alternative Solution’ provision allowing one to build outside the Code if a Building Inspector approves. Gaining approval for 100% Douglas-fir framing without chemical treatment is much more likely following recent Forest Research work proving Douglas-fir is considerably more resistance than Radiata pine to moisture absorption.
The second item of research concerns the trace element boron, a deficiency of which has been linked to deformation in Radiata pine. Anecdotal evidence had it that the link was similar in Douglas-fir but early results of trials are showing no such thing. Indeed it appears adding B to stands inhibits growth. This is good news in as much as your Consultant has always advised us not to apply it. That has saved considerable cost and it seems, growth!
If you have any queries about anything, or want more information, please don't hesitate to contact us.
WARREN FORESTRY Ltd
Manager for the AHF Partnership Committee