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the forester, and the student of new edition take?” is a question Forestry. No one, however, who that will be on many lips. As knew the fine old book in its might have been expected, the original shape, will think any the editor, himself a student of the less of the achievement of its German school, has frankly avowed author because of the alterations his faith in the German methods. that have now had to be made He has not expunged the author's upon his handiwork.
recommendations as to thinning In the new edition of “The For- and pruning, but he has made it ester' the present condition of plain wherein he differs from him, British woodlands is represented and describes fully the newer methin an interesting and suggestive ods with which he would supplant light. It is shown that they are the old. sufliciently extensive to be of great Continental foresters favour national importance. It is observed thick planting and frequent but that, comparatively speaking, they spare thinning, with the view of are so limited in extent as to give providing and maintaining an rise to no little concern regarding abundant leaf - canopy, that the future timber-supplies for the the trees may be encouraged to industrial wants of the country. seek for light and air from the It is, moreover, more than hinted tops rather than the sides, and that the management of our wood- that the fertility of the soil may lands is so very bad as to incur be conserved. It is argued that enormous losses to the owners of this struggling upwards for light plantations themselves and to the and air promotes the formation of nation at large. Upon each of a long, clean, straight bole, a tree these aspects of the question the of the highest technical value ; editor has much to say that is while the system of excessive thinworthy of careful study. Dr Nis- ning, which has been so largely purbet has had exceptional opportun- sued in this country, encourages ities of becoming acquainted with lateral development rather than the science and practice of For- high - growing, the formation of estry as taught and practised in thick, short, quickly tapering boles, Germany, India, and elsewhere with numerous low branches, which abroad, as well as in our own lessen the value of the wood by the country; and in this work he has
“knots” they form. The editor shown that he has made good use remarks:of those opportunities. There is, in particular, one point
“Thinning operations should be reconcerning the new edition of The peated at regular intervals of a few Forester' as to which many will years; but the actual number of years be anxious to obtain information. depends mainly on the age and the
energy of growth of the crop, and The methods and principles of on the species of tree. In pole-forests thinning and pruning advocated of light-demanding species, thinning by Brown in former editions of will have to be repeated most frethe work were well known to be quently ; in tree - forests of shadeat variance with the teaching of bearing species, the need for thinuing
will be least. In the former class of the modern school of Continental
young woods (oak, ash, larch, Scots Forestry, which may be said to pine) thinnings should, if possible, be have its head and centre in Ger- repeated every five years; whilst in many. “What course does the pole-forests of shade-bearing species (spruce, silver fir, beech, and some- from branch-knots, and having a good times maple and sycamore), it will form-factor, i.e., a high relative prousually be sufficient to thin once every portion between the top-diameter and eight or ten years during the pole- the base of the bole, their influence forest stage of development.
is beneficial. But wherever they tend “Considerations regarding the con- to prejudice, as is so often the case in servation of the productivity of the soil Britain, the finest development of the of course demand that oninferior quali- stem for technical purposes, they ties of land the thinnings should be must, of course, affect the financial slighter, but more frequently repeated, value of the woods, even when they than on good soil. Although on the do not go so far as to endanger the former class nature requires more assis- productivity of the soil, in violation tance in the elimination of the weak- of the first fundamental principle of lings, yet the productive capacity of Sylviculture." the soil is more apt to be injuriously affected even by the temporary and The following table shows the slight interruption in the leafy cano- extent of woodlands as compared py, and the consequent partial expos- with the other main divisions of ure of the soil to insolation.
land and water in the United “As long as thinnings are not carried so far as to interfere with Kingdom, the figures being taken increment in height and with the from the Agricultural Returns formation of a long, clean bole, free for 1892 :
Comparatively small as is the the same basis, it would be exextent of our woodlands in acres, pected that, if our British woodtheir value in hard cash is by no lands, which extend to about onemeans insignificant. It is esti- eleventh of those of Germany, mated that their bare cost of pro- were as economically and efficientduction must have considerably ly managed as are the German exceeded the sum of £20,000,000, forests, they would yield annually and their present value may surely very nearly £2,000,000, and be placed at a good deal more than adopting 2 per cent as the rate of that. In his rectorial address be- interest yielded — would have fore the University of Munich in capital value of £90,000,000—or 1889, Professor Gayer stated that at any rate about £50,000,000, the annual out-turn in timber from even adopting only twenty-five the forests of Germany amounted years' purchase as their value, and to about 60,000,000 cubic metres, presuming that they yielded as or about 2,160,000,000 cubic feet, much as 4 per cent per annum on worth from £20,000,000 to the capital value of the soil plus £22,000,000; and reckoning 2 per the growing stock of timber. It is cent as the rate of interest yielded, thus obvious that British woodhe estimated the capital value of lands are extensive and valuable all the German forests at about enough to be regarded as of great £1,000,000,000. Estimated upon national importance.
An interesting view of the forest Continental countries of Europe is reas in Great Britain and in the provided in the following table:
Forest area in
capita of population.
Percentage owned by the
It is thus observed that, as a « The World's Timber Trade, imber-producing country, Britain and Taxation in Timber," in the ccupies quite a minor position “Allgemeine Forst- und Jagdzeitmongst the European nations. ung,' March 1893, p. 82 :Is a timber-consuming country, owever, its position is very woodland, and is, in consequence of
“England has only 4 per cent of ifferent. Indeed, so enormous -re the demands of Britain for intensive output of coal, the most
its highly developed commerce and imber and other forest produce absorptive country in the world. The hat the state of the British English timber consumption intlunarket practically regulates prices ences the timber trade all over the ll over the trading universe. The world, and determines the level of the emarkable position which Britain timber prices. In the beginning of nas attained as a vast consumer
the year 1890, when a serious crisis
occurred in the English market in f timber is well indicated in the
consequence of enormous imports, ollowing extract from an article prices fell about 10 to 15 per cent py Professor Endres of Karlsruhe throughout Central Europe. In 1890
Endres, article on F'orsten, in ‘llandwörterbuch der Staatswissenschaften,' ena, 1892 ; but including corrections of figures for Britain.
the total import amounted to 9,983,774 countries, and consists of kinds of cubic metres=5,990,244 tons, valued timber that cannot possibly be grown at sixteen million pounds sterling. in Europe. The timber export of The total was supplied as follows:- England is almost zero, so that the
new customs legislation relative to Sweden and Norway .
timber within the Central European Russia
21.5 countries does not affect England in British North America
19.3 the slightest degree." United States
4.7 British East India
The customs returns for 1892 Other countries
show that the imports of forest Thus over 30 per cent of the tim- produce into Britain in that year ber is produced in non - European
were as follows:
It is acknowledged in the new Cutch and Gambier (25,192 tons edition of The Forester' that it £548,395), caoutchouc and guttawould be impossible to eliminate percha(317,660 cwt. = £3,501,932), from these returns the classes of &c., supplies of which must of timber which could not possibly course, under all circumstances, be produced in our own country, be drawn from foreign lands. such, for example, as the teak How much of this eighteen milused in the lining of iron ships, lions worth of timber now importthe jarrah, and other Australasian ed could be raised at home? This hardwoods used for street pave- question very naturally rises in ments, &c. At the same time the one's mind here. Upon this point returns given above do not include the new edition of The Forester' the other similar articles which gives forth no uncertain sound : could be eliminated from the Custom accounts, such as mahog- p. 14, vol. i.,
“If our woodlands," we read at
were better managed any
(56,315 tons = £501,203), than they at present are, and if the
1 Of this converted timber, 20,935 loads, valued at £72,860, were exported ; but all the other raw produce appears to have been actually consumed in the country, making the true figures for the year £18,129,846.
anded proprietors could be made to Again, at p. 40, vol. i., we tudy the importance of the steady read : ppreciation in the value of timber, nd the bright prospect existing for “There is no climatic reason why imber that may become marketable a very considerable portion of the
about fifty years' time, home com- £9,207,905 worth of timber that was etition might easily be induced for imported into Britain during 1892 Ene supply of more than the half of
from Russia, Scandinavia, and Gerur total timber imports. For, taking many should not in future be suphe countries in which identically the plied of home-growth, when once the ime species of trees are grown that crops raised have been subjected to may be produced sylviculturally in rational treatment from the time of ritain, there still remain the follow- their formation onwards. This latter ng imports that may be regarded condition is essential ; for woods that 3 utilised by us and not exported are crowded at thirty, forty, or fifty gain :
years of age may not have been of
sufficient or normal density at ten or Imported from Russia, Sweden, Norway, fifteen years of age, but may have and Germany during 1892.
become crowded in canopy through
excessive and uneconomical ramificaimber in the rough 1,400,927 £2,257,401
tion and coronal development. When, Fouverted timber 3,362,425 6,950,504 however, the woods have been pro
perly tended during the early stages Total 4,763,352 £9,207,905 of growth, their subsequent tending,
by means of thinning out, determines “It may confidently be stated that tñeir economic value to a considerable I due attention were given to the extent. This has been very well put, election of the proper species of trees by one of the greatest German authoror given soils and situations, if the ities on Sylviculture, in the following rinciples relating to the most fav- words:1-urable density of plantations, or “It must, however, be expressly owings, or natural regenerations, stated that the youthful development nd to the operations of tending of timber crops can afford no reliable clearing, thinning, &c.) were properly indication for the future quality of the enderstood and practised throughout mature fall. Expectations, anticipaBritain, there would not be the slight- tions, and suppositions in this respect st necessity for the insertion (as at have no justification ; for the whole resent obtains) of any clauses into matter depends most essentially on Government contracts stipulating for the later treatment of the crops he use of foreign wood in preference (whether formed by sowing or by o home-grown timber.
planting) during the operations of “But if woods be allowed to grow thinning out.'” up so that a considerable portion of he energy of growth of the individ
Now, if it is practicable to subal trees forming the crop is dissi- stantially extend our area of woodpated in branch development, in place of being utilised economically lands—and the great majority of n the formation of a clean, smooth, trustworthy authorities believe it ull-wooded bole of high general tech- is—then assuredly strenuous efforts ical quality, then no surprise need should be made to achieve this pe felt at every person concerned object. The advantages which vith its utilisation giving a solid would be gained are manifold. preference to foreign timber grown The first and main consideration mder more rational conditions, and -herefore of higher technical and gen
of keeping at home several mileral value, owing to its comparative lions sterling per annum, which reedom from knots."
now go to foreign countries for