Wood gathering weekend – Now the real work begins

We spent a good portion of this past Sunday afternoon gathering, actually hauling (more about this later), wood from the property next to ours over to our place for splitting and stacking.  Here is this weekend’s haul.

Wood Pile

Here in Alabama, forestry is the number one industry.  Here are a few interesting facts that I found through the Alabama Forest Owner’s Guide.

Facts about Alabama’s Forests and Forest Industry

  • Alabama’s forests cover more than 22 million acres, or 67% of the total land
  • Alabama currently has about 23 billion cubic feet of timber “in the bank”
  • There are twice as many trees in Alabama today as there were 50 years ago
  • For every tree harvested in Alabama, 5 are planted
  • Alabama’s forest are: 35% pine, 45% hardwood, and 20% mixed pine and hardwood
  • There are over 700 species of birds living in Alabama’s forests
  • Private, non-industrial landowners own 71% of Alabama’s forests
  • There are over 1,100 forest products manufacturing operations in Alabama
  • Forestry is Alabama’s No. 1 industry
  • About 170,000 people are employed directly or indirectly by Alabama’s forest industry

Many landowners in Alabama, whose property consists of large plots of timber, frequently sell their timber to the forest industry here.  This “sale” of the timber gives the company the ability to come onto the property and basically clear cut and haul away all the timber they desire.  Depending on the company, they may require hardwood or softwood, like pine.

In our area, it is most often the paper mill who gathers the timber and they are only interested in the pine.  This leaves behind a huge bounty of hardwoods that have been literally plucked from the ground by massive machines.  The pines are picked and loaded on trucks.  The hardwoods are sometimes, but not always, piled off to the side as biomass

The property owner next to us sold his pine timber this summer and now we have a plethora of hardwood to collect and haul home, with his blessing.  Thus, clearing the property for the next generation of timber.  So, if you try to reach me on chat, twitter, or Skype and I don’t answer, you can make a safe bet that I am out splitting and stacking wood.

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