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Author Topic: Small Black Walnut trees  (Read 3493 times)

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Offline 2602tderrick

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Small Black Walnut trees
« on: December 27, 2017, 09:11:50 PM »
I have about 6,000 small (12"-16") straight, planted, maintained Black Walnut trees on a flat easily accessible property.  The question is what is the best way to market these trees with this large of quantity.  There is a lot of good wood here that has value, but I don't know how or who to talk to maximize that.  I've considered portable sawmill contractors, but again, I don't know if this the right approach.

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2017, 09:39:04 PM »
Paging native wolf
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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2017, 09:39:39 PM »
12" across or around?
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Offline 2602tderrick

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2017, 09:51:19 PM »
DBH

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2017, 10:14:20 PM »
Seems to me you are potentially throwing a lot of money away doing a harvest at that size. A few more years and the volumes could be tremendously more, assuming the trees are growing on a good site.
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Offline 2602tderrick

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2017, 10:17:57 PM »
The problem is that I'm running out of years

Offline JB Griffin

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2017, 10:26:17 PM »
I don't know much about walnut prices, but it seems to me that trees of that size are only going to have one low value log in em.
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Offline Skeans1

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2017, 10:35:42 PM »
Would it be worth doing a thinning to release the crowns for better growth?

Offline Texas Ranger

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2017, 10:55:06 PM »
The problem is that I'm running out of years

What is your location?  A couple of years can be a big difference.  Central states (Missouri, etc) have some good rapid growth and that size has optimum potential.
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2017, 11:07:58 PM »
Is selling a portion of the land feasible?  It ought to fetch a premium over premium with the next owner knowing that its on the brink of prime walnut.  Maybe sell to a walnut specialty manufacturer?
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Offline killamplanes

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2017, 11:08:48 PM »
Think about selling the land. I have seen young walnut groves like that sale on land sales. It's a great long term investment for someone, maybe just not for you. Just a thought
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Offline nativewolf

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2017, 11:47:30 AM »
Hi, chiming in a bit later than normal on a walnut thread  :D

First, what's the general location? 

The thought of selling, or leasing, the walnut stand is a good one.  Over the next 10 years the larger trees will start to become valuable but right now there is very little board foot volume there. 

Issues:  When you sell these logs the diameter is measured from the top, not the bottom. If you have a normal tree taper in a planted walnut stand a 16" diameter tree will be 12-14" at an 8' log.  They taper quickly.  So, the 12" trees become 10-9 inch trees and you have basically a bunch of $20 logs there.  If you want to sell $20 logs there re lots of buyers, I'd buy them but I'd try to let them sit in the ground 5-10 years and add 2" in diameter.  The $20 log will become  a $100 log, etc. 

Secondly, can you take some pictures and put them in the gallery?

I'm not the only buyer here, some in PA some in IL, etc.  We'll help you find someone to get bids from.  I'm just worried that it is the wrong time to harvest but maybe not a bad time to lease the plot.
Liking Walnut

Offline luvmexfood

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #12 on: December 28, 2017, 03:54:24 PM »
Where I sell logs anything under 10" on the small end brings $150 per thousand but haven't tried to sell any small walnut. Did sell a small white oak. Eight ft. long and 8" on the small end. Brought me a whopping dollar. What you have in my opinion is not much in present value but in the long term a tidy sum
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Offline VirginiaFarm

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2017, 09:41:01 AM »
This thread brings up several questions regarding the future of black walnut prices & forests. Has the quality of walnut stands seriously diminished due to the record prices for the wood? Has it been harder to find exceptional stands with quality veneer logs than earlier when this market really started taking off?

If so, could this decrease in future supply help inflate or sustain current black walnut prices in the future?

The responses to the original post indicate waiting until these trees gain more DBH... I'm wondering what you might think about the future supply and demand of this species when this stand becomes prime for harvest. Not trying to ask a crystal ball question, just gauging experiences with mainly future supply quantity and current demand.


Offline mike_belben

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2017, 12:34:09 PM »
Scrap is a similar market to compare.  The volume available is finite, the amount sold by those who have it is directly proportional to the price paid by those who want it, and due to global transit networks far off demand influences entire world price.  the life cycle of new iron product isnt so different from growing timber. 

In scrap, decades of low price generated a glutton of supply.  A decade of booming chinese purchases created a huge american demand which peaked prices and vacuumed out the piles behind every shed.  The crash in prices means the stockpile grows again.  We should think of the 1990s as selective scrap thinning and the 2008 peak as a clearcut.  The bottom of prices thereafter is like max regen in a timber stand.  At a penny a pound no one is hauling scrap so everyone has a seedling pile started again.

Walnut supply is probably very low right now because of peak bubble pricing.  If the wood goes out of favor.. Like say poplar did 70 or 100 yrs ago,  demand crashes, prices crash, loggers stop seeking it.  Walnut doesnt get cut and thus stands will grow back to prime sizes. 

If the bubble never pops, very few land owners will wait to grow prime sized walnut.  The price isnt assured 20 yrs from now so one in the hand...
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Offline TKehl

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2017, 04:29:44 PM »
A forester can help analyze the situation and can assist with the sale as well.  At a minimum, get multiple bids from loggers.  Adding your location would help

Do you need the money?  If so, a thinning cut would bring in some.  Cut the worst and let the best get bigger.  If you need more $ than that, then sell some land post thinning.  Walnut can turn a better interest rate than many investments and yours are almost to the point where that compounding matters!

If you are wanting the land cleared, a clear cut sure beats paying a dozer!

We are looking at doing a thinning cut on a tract of similar sized Walnut to push the good ones up in size and hopefully grade.  I have a couple mills, but right now Id get paid more as logs than I would get for the lumber AND with reduced labor.  I do look forward to the cut-offs though.  ;)

Markets can be fickle.  My personal opinion though is that there is not enough Walnut to get overused.  Its never been enough of a fad for it to ever fade as it is largely supply constrained.  Prices will go up and down, but I expect Walnut to retain a premium  over other woods a long time.  Just maybe a smaller premium in the future.

As for disease, Thousand Cankers is about it from what Ive read.  And it doesnt damage the lumber when the tree dies, just makes it hard to transport due to quarantines.  Haven't been able to find many updates on it lately (I've looked), so I'm wondering if the quarantine is having an effect...
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Offline Ron Wenrich

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2017, 06:23:31 PM »
I can't think of a time that walnut was dragging in price.  Sometimes the sellers have too high of expectations, especially for the quality of wood being offered.  Veneer has always brought in big bucks.  With better technology, the veneer can be cut thinner, and recovery can increase.  But, there is a limit.  Veneer needs to be about 14" dib.  Form class is a way of estimating the dib at 16'.  Form class of 78 would mean that a 14" log would have about a 11" dib.  You might get a 12" log at 8'

The increase in value would be pretty substantial in the next 20 years.  The foreign demand is driven by China.  They have allowed home ownership, and walnut is in demand to break up the white wood that is typically grown in China.  Also, the European markets create a good demand.   The alternative woods tend to be tropical hardwoods.

As an alternative to cutting, you could sell the land with timber attached.  A forester could give you a current value and an estimated value at certain age intervals.  You could also give it to your kids or grandkids. 
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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2017, 06:30:43 PM »
Has, anyone ever seen an arrangment where an investor can buy the timber standing at its current value to satisfy the financial needs of land owner, and then assume the profits of a more mature stand down the road. Of course there would be many types of risk as well. I could see where that might be a complex deal to make.
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Offline mike_belben

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #18 on: December 30, 2017, 09:09:05 AM »
In tennessee mineral rights to a parcel are sold all the time.  Id imagine timber rights could be done too.
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Offline TKehl

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Re: Small Black Walnut trees
« Reply #19 on: December 30, 2017, 09:17:00 AM »
Timber rights!  Of course!  This is why Jeff is our fearless leader. 

Timber rights is something I've been learning about.  Rights can be sold either in perpetuity or for a given period of time, like a long term logging contract. 

It's not as fluid as the log market, but if you find the right buyer, you could potentially get a premium over what you currently have.
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