Forest Management Options
Forest plantation establishment, growth, quality, and pest and disease control depend largely upon climate conditions. Advance knowledge of likely climate conditions allows the forest manager to prepare a management strategy to obtain greater benefits or mitigate losses in plantations or natural systems. For example, with knowledge that a dry, hot season is approaching, the manager could:
- Re-schedule planting of drought vulnerable seedlings.
- Schedule timber harvest before or after a dry period to avoid a market glut.
- Anticipate infestation of the southern pine beetle and reinforce existing control efforts.
- Delay the harvest of pine straw to retain soil moisture.
Likewise, knowledge of an upcoming wet season with an increased risk of flooding provides the opportunity for managers to:
- Schedule planting of seedlings to ensure maximize seedling survival.
- Schedule timber harvest for floodable stands before or after the wet season.
- Schedule forest stands on high/dry lands to be harvested during the wet season to take advantage of high prices associated with timber scarcity due to reduced harvest.
Strategic planning may result in improved management, increasing the quality of timber while reducing costs and environmental impacts. Keeping all of this in mind, two management topics – Planting Management and Prescribed Burning – are covered in detail on this site. These broad topics cover a wide range of management options, including information on harvesting and fire management.