Sustainability in Sweden

Anders Axelsson anders.axelsson at
Mon Nov 10 03:02:29 EST 1997

Roland Jonsson <roland.jonsson at> wrote in article
<879090998.6722 at mn8>...
> >It would be ecologically interesting to see what your land will do when
> >you don't plant. Leaving some acres to self plant should help give more
> >diversity. Are there any old growth forests in Sweden? Any old growth in
> >the British Isles?
> >
> >--
> I'm not the original poster, but I'm a Swedish forester and the law says
> that you must create a new forest, but not how. Pine can self plant on
> soil, but very seldom fir, that if you want to get a productive forest
> timber and paper.
> Since a few years the law gives you opportunity to experiment, but if you
> fail, you will have to take the consequences.
> The environmentalists don't like the clear cuts, but we have found that
> almost all the time you can't get a productive forest without it.
A few years experience with this right to experiment has now taught us
that, even for pine,on most land it`s better to plant than to count on
self-planting.The exceptions being,as you point out,pine on lean soil.
An interesting way to get some diversity is the "Drettinge" method of
leaving 100 pines/hectare after a clear-cut and then plant fewer than usual
with spruce.This would mean planting,say 1000-1500/hectare.Due to the
competition with the spruce your new pines would be of high quality also.
Clear-cuts ARE ugly but you can mitigate somewhat by leaving all hard-woods
and a few pines on a clear-cut area.This in stark contrast to what we were
advised not so long ago exterminate(mechanically or chemically) all
birches for instance.
As a consequence Sweden is now importing significant quantities of birch
from the Baltic states.


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