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Author Topic: Spruce and Fir Thinnings  (Read 3358 times)

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Offline Mooseherder

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Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« on: July 16, 2007, 11:45:36 AM »
Got to thinning this section in front of the camp last week of Fir and Spruce that have been growing naturally and probably should have been thinned years ago. I only finished about a twenty-ith of the section about the size of an acre.  Am hoping it isn't too late and they will get some girth for future milling. It was real relaxing and  enjoyed every minute of it. Wish I could have finished that section.  Then it was time to come back to the R-Race. :(
 
To the left is an old 2 Row JD Potato planter the farmer left on the edge of the woods. Our atv trail is on the right side of picture.
Lane Circle Mill
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Offline Dodgy Loner

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2007, 01:23:35 PM »
I didn't know y'all had spruce and fir down there in Royal Palm, FL :P.
"There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who consider price only are this man's lawful prey." -John Ruskin

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Offline Mooseherder

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2007, 01:38:00 PM »
I didn't know y'all had spruce and fir down there in Royal Palm, FL :P.
Yep, We got Moose too. :D
Actually the camp is in Maine.
Lane Circle Mill
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Offline Dodgy Loner

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2007, 01:47:34 PM »
Well, it's looking nice.  I don't know much about the reaction of spruces and firs to thinning, but I do know that down here, it all depends on the species.  Loblolly pine, for example, will respond to a late thinning much better than slash pine.  If you let slash pine get too dense, it won't hardly respond at all.
"There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who consider price only are this man's lawful prey." -John Ruskin

Any idiot can write a woodworking blog. Here's mine.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2007, 02:57:09 PM »
We space them here when they attain a height of 7 feet and up to about 30 feet in height. We space them 6 to 7 feet apart. This is pre-commercial thinning. Stands of old fir exhibiting but rot and tight ring counts to the outside are generally avoided. White spruce does not respond well to late thinnings. However, red spruce will even respond after long periods of suppression. If the stand was quite tight and left too long, you get a lot of stem breakage from high winds and ice when it's thinned out.  Good luck with your stand thinning.
Move'n on.

Offline Mooseherder

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2007, 09:05:12 PM »
Thanks Swampdonkey,
These are about 24-30 foot high. Some had some good diameter to them although I didn't measure any. I will when I go back next time. I left a few more standing for now
so hopefully the wind don't get them. I trimmed about a third of the bottom branches or as high as I could reach.
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Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2007, 06:03:49 AM »
Be cautious when pruning spruce and fir. Leave a short stub beyond the washer-like swell around base of the branch. Don't cut into that swell and keep the chain off the bark. ;) Probably most of your limbs were dead that you pruned. Pruning green limbs can be more damaging on spruce and fir because it introduces but rot. Dad pruned out our fence line of spruce and now they are all rotten beyond the first couple inches of sapwood. One 28 " spruce blew down last year and just missed the barn, and at 20 feet up it was still rotten. Those suckers make a big mess and not so easy to deal with when all ya have is a saw and man power to deal with the blocks of wood and limbs. ::) I rolled a smaller spruce about 14 feet long with one of Logrites peaveys last week and the tree was about 8 inches smaller. It musta soaked up some water while laying on the ground because that was very heavy. Good thing the field was sloping down from where I was rolling it from.  :o
Move'n on.

Offline pappy

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2007, 10:21:28 AM »
So Mooseherder ya must ta had a pretty good bomb fire with all them branches and unwanteds  ;D  :D   The night skies were clear for the most part last week  8) and sittin' by a fire gazing' up at the stars was what we was doin' too!! The we'ones really liked the s'mores  :)

Nice job on the thinnin' ... I guts about 15 acres ta tin out ifn' ya got a need ta do more  ;)  only after ya gets yours done first though  ;D
"And if we live, we shall go again, for the enchantment which falls upon those who have gone into the woodland is never broken."

"Down the Allagash."  by; Henry Withee

Offline Mooseherder

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2007, 09:19:07 PM »
Yep, Got a burn permit and tried on 3 different nights to catch that big ol pile the previous owner left. Some of it burned with the branches but most of the pile is still there soaking wet rotted, so most of what burned was what we used to fuel the fire.
(Along with a few udder idears) ;D
The only good fire we had was the fire pit. The draft on my wood stove is still terrible. (40 degrees in July) :D
SD, I cut each branch with a hand saw, the kind you use with a cheap mitre box, but that thing worked like a champ. Usually one or two stroke cut most branches, they were dead.  I didn't leave any stubs, cut just beyond flush while being careful to not  touch any of the bark. Most of the time anyway. :D  There was no way I would attempt thinning with the chainsaw, I ain't that steady.
Lane Circle Mill
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Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Spruce and Fir Thinnings
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2007, 06:35:01 AM »
I'm with ya on the chain saw. Me either. Your back would never be the same again.  ;D :D They have heavy brush saws for such things. Might be interesting if the buts are bigger than 6 " though. ;)
Move'n on.


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