April 21, 2022

Pruning for quality timber

A new course exploring the various techniques, opportunities and issues with pruning. We will explore how to go about formative & high-pruning in conifer & broadleaves to grow better quality, knot-free timber. With Jez Ralph of Timber Strategies.

Stourhead Estate, Stourton, Wiltshire, BA12 6QD

(Delayed from the original date of Thursday 16 September 2021)

The day will consist of:

  • Introduction to why pruning is needed for timber quality
  • Introduction to the issues (wound development/healing; maintaining crown ratios etc)
  • The difference between hardwood and softwood pruning; formative and high pruning
  • On site look at pruned and unpruned stands at pole stage and at mature development
  • Tools, techniques and practicalities
  • Discussion between experts in an on-site setting on how & when to prune
  • Offsetting costs through using volunteers.  Compromising some standards but gaining efficiency and community interaction.

The course is led by Jez Ralph of Timber Strategies and supported by a number of experts in the field of pruning for quality:

  • Nick Hoare – Our host at Stourhead. Stourhead Western estate has generations worth of experience in high pruning for quality timber.
  • Sam Whatmore – Sam has been extensively pruning his young pole-stage Douglas fir in North Devon.
  • Charley B/Chris Sadd – Hooke Park has been undertaking a programme of high pruning of all ages of conifer using architectural students and local volunteers.
  • Bryan Elliott – Experience of pruning in New Zealand.

Please bring a packed lunch as lunch is not provided.

Price: £75.00 for RFS members / £85.00 for non RFS members

Jez Ralph

Timber Strategies

Jez is the Director of Timber Strategies and spends his time at the junction of timber growing and timber use. Half his time is spent encouraging the growing of environmentally resilient & quality timber in the UK; the other half encouraging the use of the same timber. Jez has been involved with high pruning programs to grow knot-free timber on a number of estates.