Too Many White Pines
Having the right number of trees is always a concern when managing stands of timber. Too many trees and they will grow very slowly, too few trees and they will turn into wolf trees (trees that have a wide-spreading crown) that have low timber value. Foresters refer to this as stocking level.
NC Forest Service County Ranger Brandon Keener is thinning a stand of white pines with a brush saw in the photo. This stand was planted five years ago and after planting, natural white pine seedlings appeared. The result is a dense, overstocked stand. A brush saw is used to thin the white pine seedlings back to a spacing of approximately 12 feet by 12 feet.
This stand is part of a field tour for the Society of American Foresters on white pine siliviculture. Many thanks to County Ranger Brandon Keener, Assistant County Ranger Russell Choate, and District Ranger Tater Maines for swinging brush saws and getting the stand ready for the field tour.