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Author Topic: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust  (Read 5501 times)

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Offline Blue Sky

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"Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« on: November 12, 2007, 07:34:14 PM »
I have been dealing with Black locust for some 10-12 years now.  Periodically I hear about ship mast locust, but I can find no information on such a sub-species, if there is such a tree.  Is there anyone out there who knows of such things?   Enchanted Forester

Online beenthere

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2007, 07:43:10 PM »
It is likely just a reference to the quality of the tree...straight, no limbs that are not overgrown, little taper.  Don't think it is a variety or a sub-species.
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Offline sprucebunny

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2007, 07:45:46 PM »
I doubt it was really used for masts because it weighs so much.

The term was used for white pine in the past.
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Offline Daren

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2007, 07:56:20 PM »
Maybe check out this link http://www.blacklocust.org/workshops/ . Or do a search for locust here. I got that link from a post I made a couple years ago. Or a google search, there is info out there. I found some old ship restoration websites on a quick search.
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Offline woodsrunner

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2007, 08:45:45 PM »
Hey Daren great link. thanks for posting it. locust is one of my favorite woods.

Offline Daren

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2007, 09:51:09 PM »
locust is one of my favorite woods.

Mine too, it is often overlooked-thought of as a "pest" in hardwood stands. It has it's own merits that should be recognized.
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

Offline cantcutter

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2007, 06:04:23 PM »
Never heard of a mast being done with locust, but it was commonly used by lofters on the New England coast for keels.

Offline Phorester

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2007, 11:54:49 AM »

Shipmast locust is a variety of black locust developed in the 50s or 60s.  It was named "shipmast" because it was suppossed to grow very straight, and it was also supossed to resist locust borer.

A landowner in one of my counties had a few acres of these planted on his farm back then.  The results were not spectacluar.  I last saw them about 20 years ago.  After all these years they look about like every other locust stand here.  I'll see if I can find out more info on this particular planting.
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Online beenthere

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2007, 12:08:10 PM »
Thanks Phorester.
I did a Google on Shipmast Locust and came up with a variety of hits...and interesting discussions.  One said Little included it as a variety, but this designation has been questioned and it is believed just a variation...

Some group named Black Locust site (out of date as of 2003) suggests removing root stock from straight locust trees, and replanting the root for continuation of the better trees, and calls it Shipmast Locust...??

Will be interested in what you find out..

 :)
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Offline Daren

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Re: "Ship-Mast" Black Locust
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2007, 01:15:23 PM »
it is believed just a variation...


From my research that is the impression I get. It has just been cultivated/grown/pruned differently to achieve the kind of timber needed. That link I put showed using root stock from other trees so genetics has to play a rule too.
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.


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