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Big J

Hybrid poplar plantation growth rates?

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I've just got in from a RDV with a forestry expert.

Valuation of a plantation of hybrid pops in Central Brittany

These are undersized being planted too close together.

30m tall and only 50cms DBH around the margins.

Had they'd been planted better, at 30years old they'd all be closer 60cm

However, the client has an air of desperation about him so will probably want to sell.

However, access needs improvement, gate and trees must go, they must be loaded roadside on a swift departmental road so permissions sought for road control.

Plus they must be loaded almost as soon as harvested due to the space constraints.

Client thinks he is sitting on a gold mine.

He has already made it quite clear he begrudges paying in advance for a valuation so he may have an aneurysm once he recieves his cost break down.

Stuart

 

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1 hour ago, Stubby said:

All the pop I have burnt has been ok . Can't say what variant though . It is very important to keep it dry once split ( more so than other woods ) as it soaks up moisture like blotting paper . Hygroscopic .

Thanks Stubby

 

Probably not much good to me then as I live in a damp Welsh valley, and have a bit of trouble dying wood / keeping wood dry...

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One of the potential avenues for usage for poplar is low grade timber to form structural walls using a method called Brettstapel:
 
http://www.brettstapel.org/Brettstapel/What_is_it.html
 
My wife's old practice did two Brettstapel buildings in Scotland, and as well as being ecologically superb, it does make use of low-grade timber. I'm not precisely sure how poplar would perform in this scenario, but it's worth investigating. 
 
One thing that occured to me is that it could perhaps be used as part of a wall with a designed moisture gradient. As we all know, poplar is super hydroscopic, so potentially you build a timber cassette (essentially a SIPs panel) with poplar forming the inside wall and spruce on the outside. The poplar would suck excess moisture from the air inside the rooms for it to move through the wall outside. Just ideas, but I find it interesting!

Do keep posting things like this please. Very interesting.
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13 hours ago, openspaceman said:

It's logical if you think about it, if you prune the butt to give 6m of clear stem for peeling then you'll have 15+metres of knotty top for pulp[1]. Before plastic peeled punnets were used for all sorts of  vegetables and with the swing against plastic packaging in the public's perception it may be worth pursuing again[2] but the management has to be sustained  rather than the crop being abandoned as in the Bryant and May case. UK needs to adopt the French long term view on timber growing rather than FC led short term grant getting. Let's not go overboard in decrying poplar it does have potential and I think @Billhook on here successfully built a cabin from it.

 

[1]This was what was annoying in the 70s when paper recycling  became the way to save the planet, it depressed the market for the poorer grades in the top,  put more of the harvesting cost onto the rest of the tree and  increased the diameter of  lop and top left on site.

 

[2]Actually the use of wood instead of plastic  from fossil fuels makes sense for a lot of things, I started supplying birch poles for brush heads and even way back then the  owner of the business said his fortunes  were inversely  proportional to the price of oil, if oil went up Addis brushes went up and so he sold more wooden brush heads, eventually even though the ancient turning machines owed him nothing the labour couldn't compete with the speed of injection moulding and the cost of oil pumped out of the ground compared with motor manual harvesting of small diameter poles.

 

Well remembered Mr Spaceman!

Just sitting down there now, in the sun which is a pleasant change, twenty years after it was built, and not a sign of rot as the whole. Cabin is a couple of feet off the ground perched on six large sandstones and there is a membrane between the wood and the stone

The joints have settled  nicely and you cannot push a bit of paper between the logs.  All down to the full scribe method and the guidance of Dan Franklin at woodenways

Cut the copper beech floor with the Lucas Mill and it needs another coat of varnish after twenty years of kids and adults messing about in the lake and then dragging all the water and mud inside when they come in to change!

698C1529-9BFC-4E72-9117-75FA988D09B6.jpeg

A4E89A10-5D0F-4823-A60F-130757AEBB00.jpeg

Edited by Billhook
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Lovely cabin Billhook. I work with Dan quite a lot these days. Sell him timber, he saws timber for me :D

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7 hours ago, Stubby said:

Hydroscopic is a means of looking under water ( with a hydroscope ) . Pop is hygroscopic . Its the ped in me :D

I stand corrected! I am sure that I knew that, but it's funny how things get contorted in your head :D

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1 hour ago, Big J said:

I stand corrected! I am sure that I knew that, but it's funny how things get contorted in your head :D

We all know what you meant , including me J . I was just being picky for the sake of it Bud 🙂

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9 hours ago, ESS said:

Yes, Kent were probably the largest ones left at the time.Dont know if you ever saw their yard? they used end stack every pole .

Yes and it was all done by one gorilla of a bloke when I was there, hand balling a few thousand tonnes a year. There was an old school cutter locally called Joby who would tell me I was trying to run before I could walk.

9 hours ago, ESS said:

We used to supply a couple in the north, Syc, birch, ash, and one of them took alder too. Striping was bit of a ballache hey ?

Striping cost me a pair of boots when the tool slipped, mind we never did it on sites we could extract immediately.

 

Kent took  birch, sycamore, alder  6" down to 2"and if pushed ash poles down 6" down to 3.5"

 

Mere didn't like alder poles as I recall but also took beech sawlogs, Harris beech sawlogs only.

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22 hours ago, MattyF said:

most of the felling was done on habitat restoration

Of course it depends on what habitat you are restoring. The removal of poplar plantations in East Anglia has been, in part, blamed for a decline in the breeding population of golden oriel.

 

I was involved in the clear fell of Scots pine on a raised mire SSSI. The reason being habitat restoration back to raised mire. Trouble was the resident red squirrels would be made homeless. The locals seemed to prefer the squirrels over rare dragon flies and other bog loving things that made the site special. Cue local uproar and unrest.

 

There's always a balance to be struck.

Edited by EdwardC
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