Forestry Footnotes

News
The University of Tennessee Department of Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries develops an electronic quarterly newsletter that addresses natural resource issues. These date back to 2001 and archived copies are available for your viewing here: https://tiny.utk.edu/FWF-archives. The following article may also be of interest. Burned-over forests are now being replanted with the use of drones. See: https://tiny.utk.edu/drone-replanting

Research
Epicormic Branches on Hardwoods
Epicormic branches are small twigs that develop from dormant buds found along the main bole of hardwood trees. They cause defects in the underlying wood and may cause significant reductions in both log grade and subsequent lumber value. For landowners, epicormic branches are not desired. Steve Meadows, researcher with the U.S. Forest Service, outlines important points regarding epicormics branches.

• Species differ in the number of epicormic branches produced.
• Crownclass(anindicatoroftreehealth/stress)strongly influences production of the branches. Likelihood of producing epicormics increases with overtopped trees.
• Sudden exposure to sunlight after thinning may increase epicormic formation, especially in low-vigor trees of susceptible species.
Trees with high to moderately-high propensity to produce epicormic branches include most oaks, hickory, sweetgum, and elm. Those with low propensity to produce epicormics include green ash, sycamore, and pecan.

Markets
Mills Build Summer Inventory
After extended wet fall and winter conditions, log and lumber production has finally picked up. Incremental progress of rebuilding inventories is occurring. In general, hardwood lumber prices are holding steady – with some moderation. For instance, poplar endured a multi-year low, that began breaking last fall and already in 2019 has increased 13 percent. Poplar value now reaches that of red oak (depending on grade). White oak continues to enjoy very high value, whereas red oak and black walnut have softened by 32 percent and 18 percent, year over year (respectively). Value of standing timber is a function of: species, form, grade, location and marketing savvy. Landowners are encouraged to seek professional forestry help prior to the sale of timber

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