The Westervelt Company's Timber Production group is responsible for growing and managing a forest of nearly 500,000 acres. Our challenge is to intensively manage each productive acre to yield quality pine and hardwood sawtimber, while enhancing the productivity of our land and protecting the environment. Those lands not suited to intensive management, such as streamside management zones (SMZ), are managed less intensively to protect water quality and provide wildlife habitat and species diversity.
Each acre is designated for either pine or hardwood management, based on a variety of factors including soil type, existing stand type and timber management objectives. Our rotation length is 28 years for pine and 60 years for hardwood.
Throughout the life of the forest, Westervelt's professional foresters prescribe and apply a wide range of silvicultural treatments, on a site specific basis, designed to improve stand conditions and produce quality sawtimber. These treatments include:
Chemical site preparation - the application of herbicides to control undesirable vegetation, prior to reforestation
Mechanical site preparation - soil tillage to remediate inherent soil problems, or the mechanical removal of logging debris to improve planting access
Reforestation - the planting of pine or hardwood seedlings following timber harvest. The Westervelt Company reforests approximately 12,000 acres each year with Loblolly and Longleaf Pine and various species of commercial hardwoods.
Weed Control - the application of herbicides, shortly after reforestation, to control herbaceous weeds and improve the survival of planted pines. Herbaceous weeds are the primary competitor for moisture and nutrients during the first growing season.
Pre-commercial thinning - the removal of naturally occurring pine saplings from a stand of planted pine Natural pines can cause overstocking and compete with planted pines for available resources (light, moisture and nutrients).
Fertilization - the application of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizers to nutrient deficient sites
Pruning - the removal of limbs from the first 16 foot cut of selected trees. Removing limbs reduces the occurrence of knots and improves the grade of lumber sawn from the tree.
Understory burning - cool season burning designed to reduce flammable fuels and encourage the re-sprouting of understory vegetation for improved wildlife habitat
For more information, please contact us.