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Spruce tops are a renewable resource.  The Timonens take great pride in their harvesting process, which helps ensure access to sites for multiple future cuts. The harvesting process has evolved over the years, allowing the family to play a significant role in the long-term management of Minnesota’s black spruce bogs.  For public agencies such as the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and timber companies needing to support pulp markets decades into the future timber stand improvement our TSI work is highly beneficial.  The harvest process releases the immature black spruce trees through removal of competing species, which may include tamarack, birch, jack pine and red pine.  Regarding the black spruce, approximately 800 trees per acre are left untopped, which equates to pulp crop tree spacing of six to eight feet.  Pre-commercial crop tree release increases tree diameter and helps ensure survival.  In terms of dollars and cents, released trees become mature sooner and likely attain a larger size at maturity. 

Landowners who are less concerned about future pulp wood production can maximize the present value of their asset by leaving fewer designated pulp crop trees.  This approach often times applies to individual landowners.  Removal of competing species is still encouraged to promote a harvest targeted every five to seven growing seasons. 

Sean produced a video using an aerial drone to better describe the harvest process and more importantly provide an example of quality TSI work.  Check it out in the Videos tab.  Enjoy!

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