Our firewood and wood products come from our own private forest land in Southern Oregon and on the North Coast of California. Our forests are managed for the sustainable production of forest products while maintaining a healthy forest ecosystem. Our forests are growing at a faster rate than we are harvesting. Trees are selected for harvest in a way that ensures the long term health of the remaining stand of trees.
With selective harvest, unlike clear cutting, trees that are dead, dying, of poor form or overcrowded can be removed. These trees are carefully removed to prevent damaging the remaining healthy trees which are left with more space and resources to grow.
Our forests are habitat to many wildlife species including deer, elk, bear, cougar and rainbow trout. Our harvesting helps create a diverse habitat that attracts these animals.
When trees are overcrowded they compete for space, sunlight, nutrients and water. This can greatly reduce their growth, make them more vulnerable to insects, disease and wildfire. When the trees are thinned the remaining trees are more healthy and grow faster.
Much of our forest land was originally old growth conifer forest. Logging by past owners decades ago and a century of fire suppression by the government has resulted in an overgrowth of deciduous species. The deciduous trees displace and compete with the conifers that would otherwise grow back to restore the original forest.
Our hardwood firewood comes from harvesting these deciduous trees which we harvest to allow the conifers to grow. Conifers grow faster and larger and produce the forests of towering trees that the forests of the Pacific Coast are known for.
Most of our softwood firewood comes from thinning the conifers when they are overcrowded. When they are overstocked and too close together the growth rates can slow to a rate where they are hardly growing at all. After thinning or removing the hardwoods that are shading them, conifers like douglas fir and ponderosa pine can increase their growth rates dramatically.
When the conifers being removed in a thinning are large enough they are sold as logs to the sawmills to be made into lumber products. The smaller material is cut into firewood.
After thinning the trees they grow larger and after a few years they start to become overcrowded again. That’s when it is time to thin them again so they can continue to grow at a fast rate. In each successive thinning both the trees that are harvested as well as the ones left will be larger and more valuable.