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increment of timber from the worthless by the growth of side time of sowing the seed in 1856 branches. Plant either of these has averaged 238 cubic feet trees in the way they grow per acre. Reducing this by naturally-in close company, one-fifth to suit British “square- covering a large extent of of-quarter-girth” measurement, ground and they willform their it works out at 9d. a foot to own effective shelter against the £7_per acre per annum. blast, and produce clean and
The capabilities of this won- readily marketable timber. derful tree have not yet been The most remarkable feature fairly tested in this country, about the Douglas fir is the but there seems to be little rapidity with which it produces doubt that it is destined to commercial timber of the finest effect a revolution far more quality. Adopting Dr Nisbet's complete in British forestry estimate of the most remunerathan that wrought by the tive age for felling the prinlarch in the eighteenth cen- cipal forest trees grown under tury. These eight acres at favourable conditions, viz. :Taymount, and a patch of an acre and a half on the Whalley Abbey estate in Wicklow, are
Larch, Scots pine, and spruce 50-60 positively the only examples Ash, elm, and sycamore
60-70 which Dr Nisbet is able to Beech
90-120 give of the Douglas fir being Oak.
120-1501 submitted to forest treatment in this country. Elsewhere it and comparing it with the has been used for ornamental results obtained at Taymount, effect, dotted about among it is clear that Douglas fir other trees as our grandsires produces a far more valuable dotted silver firs. Just as the crop in forty years than any silver fir is the loftiest Euro- other conifer does in fifty to pean tree, so the Douglas is seventy—a crop which may be the loftiest of American firs, sown, grown, and felled within and the result of such hand- an ordinary lifetime. ling is the same in both cases. Besides the existing woodSilvers and Douglas outgrow lands which,
which, under proper all company but their own; management, might be brought the tops get knocked about by into a remunerative state, Dr storms and the timberis rendered Nisbet estimates that, of the
| Dr Nisbet gives this (vol. i. p. 333) as a “rough generalisation ” of the ages at which such trees, as a crop, reach “their greatest market value”; but he seems to be reckoning upon the present peculiar condition of the market for home timber, in which such stuff as pitwood is most readily saleable. The age when the timber of the different species ought to be at full bulk and perfect maturity must be taken as much higher, viz. :
80-90 Beech and elm
16,710,788 acres of waste land realised asset of waste land, in the United Kingdom, about warning us not to assume that, one-fifth, say 3,300,000 acres, as has been asserted, “any is fitted for profitable forestry. land yielding a smaller net This is a far less sanguine rental than 8s. an
acre for calculation than has been pre- agriculture or pasture will now sented in evidence before the pay better under timber.” several committees which, in Still, the State forests of Gerrecent years, have inquired many, where labour is cheaper into forestry matters, but it is than in Britain, show a net & prudent one. Much of the revenue averaging over all land reckoned as waste is bog, just 1.1s. an acre, as going which could only be prepared concerns, and there are many for planting at vast expense; hundred thousand acres and much of it lies above the Scotland and Ireland suitable 1000 feet lovel, beyond which for planting rented at from good results cannot be expected 6d. to 2s. an acre. Such land in our latitude. Moreover, it would not lie waste in Geris not well to undertake plant- many, where, “notwithstanding in isolated patches.
ing the very large acreage that “This estimate," says Dr Nisbet,
is already under woodlands, "does not include every piece of poor every convenient opportunity pasturage and apparently waste land is taken to convert waste lands suitable for planting, because for into plantations.” planting, with a fair chance of profit, It is obvious to anybody it is essential to form large compact blocks of woodland. Smail scattered acquainted, even superficially, plantations of 20, 30, 40, or 50 acres with land management that no can neither be made nor managed so ordinary landowner can coneconomically as large compact blocks template planting in blocks of of 500, 1000, or 2000 acres; for be- 500, 1000, or 2000 acres.
Even tween sylviculture and arboriculture there is just the same sort of econ
if he could find the capital omic difference as exists between necessary for the expense of manufacturing on a large and on a planting, which cannot be recksmall scale."
oned at less than £6 an acre, Again, he utters a word of and meet the annual bill for caution against too high ex- wages, &c., which may be taken pectation in regard to this un- at £650 for 1000 acres, and at
52 10 0 374 S 0 103 2 0
£650 0 0 This is assuming the employment of one man upon every hundred acres, which will be necessary until the forest is a going concern, but it is far above what is found necessary in Germany. “The extent,” says Dr Nisbet, “to which, per 100 acres, labour is required in the German woodlands cannot be fixed. In 1883 Danckelmann estimated that the actual cost of labour necessary in wood. lands was, per acre per annum, 2•1 shillings in Prussia, 2-6 in Saxony, 3.7 in £550 for every additional 1000 any lack of wood-consuming inacres, he must submit to lock- dustries in Great Britain. As ing up all this money until the Dr Nisbet informs us, the chairreturns begin about twenty makers of Bucks are using more years after planting. That the wood than the local beech woods investment would pay hand- can supply, and depend to a somely in the end may be large extent upon foreign imassumed with a certainty based ports. As to the creation of on the statistics of foreign new industries, they cannot be forests. Upon this point we thought of till the forest is in are more confident than Dr being. For instance, there is Nisbet seems to be. We agree not a single wood-pulp factory with him that
in the United Kingdom, be
cause there is no wood to pulp. « wildly sanguine estimates have Given the wood, and the pulpoften been made—not only long ago, but even down to the present time
ing mills would follow fast about the profit of transforming vast enough. stretches of waste lands into woodlands. It is easy to juggle with
"The first wood-pulp factory was figures and make a plausible show of started in Saxony about 1854, and certain profit two or three generations the first cellulose factory about 1874 ; hence, and there is a sort of fascina- and there are now in Germany alone, tion about calculations of this sort." to say nothing of Austria, Sweden,
and Norway, over 600 pulp - mills Yet I cannot share Dr Nis- using nearly 36,000,000 cubic feet of bet’s apprehension that, sup- factories consuming about 30,000,000
wood [per annum], and 71 cellulose posing a forest is being man- cubic feet. And these are still comaged on economic principles, paratively new industries, capable of there would be any difficulty enormous expansion, and likely in in finding a profitable market time to raise the price of the softer for the products.
woods suited for this trade-willow,
poplar, birch, lime, and the softer Any great increase in the present
conifers” (vol. i. p. 85). woodland area throughout the United Kingdom must go hand in hand with
In spite of the incessant and the encouragement and improvement growing demand for timber in of existing wood-consuming indus- this country, the complaint is tries and the creation and fostering commonly heard from landof new ones before it is possible that any large investment of national capi
owners that they cannot be tal in this direction is likely to have
sure of a market for good trees any fair chance of assuring direct even when they have them to monetary profit."
offer. Dr Nisbet has explained Considering that we are al
the cause of this in one of his ready buying wood and wood other books :products from the foreigner to
“ Available markets cannot be utilthe tune of £32,000,000 a-year, ised to the best advantage if the it does not seem that there is quantity of wood offered one year is
Alsace-Lorraine, 5.1 in Würtemberg, and 5:3 in Baden ; but these data are apt to mislead, as the two last evidently include extraction (timber-slides and floating) done by Government and repaid indirectly by the buyer.” But surely this is expense which must not be left out of account.
large, the next small, a third year furnished from the estate office. wanting altogether, and so on irreg- Novar has been more fortunate ularly. "First a hunger, then a
than most other estates, in that, burst,' is bad in this as in all other
from about the year 1800 down
to 1850, planting proceeded To ensure profitable trade regularly every year. Had this the producer must secure been continued, we should have proper business connection, and had an example, unique in the for that two things are neces- United Kingdom, of an extensary, every greengrocer sive woodland arranged for knows -- regularity of supply systematic annual felling. Unand uniformity of quality. luckily, no planting was done
To show that sound manage- between 1850 and 1881, after ment will ensure profitable re- which the present owner, Mr turns from British woodland, Munro Ferguson, M.P., resumed even in the present condition the work. In spite of this break, of the home trade, the balance- which has interfered with the sheet of the Novar woods in regular felling, the returns show Ross-shire may be cited, as a considerable annual profit. Average annual income from, and expenditure on, Novar woods during
five years 1895-99. Realised by the sale of 93,537 cubic feet (average annual gross revenue) £8368 Deduct outlay on above, and on 13,751 cubic feet used on the estatem Felling and logging.
£203 Manufacture, transport, and share
139 Cost of plant
5562 Average net profit on timber works
£2806 Deduct expenditure on maintenance of woodsLoss of grazing rents
13 Restocking ground, including forester's salary 545
782 Average annual net revenue .
£2024 The total area of the Novar was young wood added within woods — excluding 195 acres the previous twenty years; and round the mansion and 70 acres 989 acres was bare, partly enclosed as warren, which have from storm damage (about onenot been brought into the work- eighth) and partly from annual ing-plan-amounted in 1899 to felling. Of this bare part, one3670 acres, of which 1813 acres third was open to grazing; on
1 Our Forests and Woodlands, p. 263.
the rest, “vigorous natural re- £2024, as shown above, works generation of Scots pine and out at an income of 118. 1d. per larch from adjoining woods acre, which compares not unfavwas in progress.” Taking the ourably with the returns of the entire area of 3670 acres, the German State forests, as quoted average annual net revenue of by Dr Nisbet (vol. i. p. 85).
In fact, the Novar average a better system is applied to for 1895-99 appears almost them. At present they are exactly the same per acre as run as a combination of landthat of the German State scape-gardening, game-preservforests for 1892-96-viz., 11s. ation, and common - grazing. per acre; but an allowance In 1851 a well-directed effort must be made in respect of the was made to put that noble Scots acre, probably in force at Crown demesne, the New
which contains 6104 Forest, upon a businesslike square yards as against 4840 footing. An Act was passed, square yards in the Imperial providing for successive enacre. On the other hand, the closing and planting; but after German State forests have been 5000 acres had been so treated, kept in regular rotation of crop there arose a hullabaloo. Parfor many generations, whereas liament, always too prone to in the Novar woodland occurred yield to pressure from an unthe dislocating and wasteful in- instructed public in matters of terval between 1850 and 1881, sentiment, hastily passed anwhen no planting or natural other Act in 1877, putting a regeneration took place. stop to the excellent work in
But we have State forests progress, and decreeing that already, some reader may ob- while the enclosures should at ject, and, so far from paying, no time exceed 16,000 acres there is a heavy deficit on out of the total 64,737 acres, them. 1 What on earth is the no ground should be enclosed use of extending them ? None except what had been planted whatever, is the reply, unless since the year 1700. The ancient
1 The Report of the Commissioners of Woods and Forests for 1903-4 shows £32,481 receipts from the Royal and State forests, against £58,402 expenditure, a net loss of £25,921.