Forestry Management Practices

Public and private landowners use a variety of forestry management practices. Below is a brief look at a few techniques and their benefits:

Trees are a renewable resource. This means that they can be grown, harvested, replanted and harvested again and again in a never-ending cycle to provide clean air and water, habitat for wildlife, beautiful views and thousands of products – both today and in the future. The process of growing trees on an area that previously has been harvested or cleared is called reforestation. The two basic methods of reforestation are natural regeneration and artificial regeneration.

Natural regeneration relies on nature to return an area to forest land after trees are harvested. Through natural regeneration, new trees grow from seeds that are carried by the wind, transported or buried by animals, or simply dropped on-site by mature trees. In addition to producing seedlings from seeds, hardwood trees regenerate naturally by sprouting new growth from the stumps of cut trees.

Artificial regeneration involves human intervention in sowing seeds or planting seedlings. This method of forest renewal has several advantages over natural regeneration. It provides better control over tree spacing, more control over the species present in the new forest, the opportunity to plant disease-resistant seedlings, and a higher rate of tree survival. Although artificial regeneration is more expensive than natural regeneration, the result is usually a more productive stand in a shorter period.