November 25, 2021

Thinning regimes and timber quality

With Jez Ralph

Tutor:  Jez Ralph

Time: 11.00 to 13.00

Method: ZOOM online meeting

Price: £16.00 for RFS members / £20.00 for non-members

Thinning is a major component of silviculture and has a significant effect not only on how the stand grows but also on the internal timber quality.  As more people move towards continuous cover systems, thinning becomes ever more complex, and the opportunities to use thinning well become ever greater.  Even in even-aged stands, thinning will dictate the quality and saleability of timber.

This seminar will cover the basic foundations of the interactions of thinning and timber quality as well as looking at recent research. We will cover:

  • A short primer in timber properties and thinning types.
  • How differing thinning techniques will effect qualities such as density, knottiness, stiffness and grain.
  • How to plan thinning regimes based on timber quality objectives.
  • The consequences of over and under-thinning.
  • Balancing thinning costs to timber markets.

Jez Ralph

Timber Strategies

Jez Ralph has been working in the forestry and timber industries for 20 years. From a Masters degree in Forest management his interest grew in timber use and timber quality. In 2011 Jez was awarded a Nuffield Farming Scholarship to investigate increasing the value of timber for small-scale forest owners around the world. This led to working with the Architectural Association School of Architecture, managing their forest campus and part of the team developing digital solutions & robotic applications for using lower-grade wood. In 2015 Jez set up Timber Strategies which is sits in the underdeveloped area between forestry and timber use. Timber Strategies is involved in developing value-chains and integrated supply-chains that maximise quality & value of timber. The business works with forest-owners, sawmills, timber-users and policy-makers equally as well as teaching at schools of forestry and architecture.

This background has given Jez a unique insight into silvicultural practices such as thinning and how a demand-led approach to silviculture can help us grow better, more resilient forests.