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White spruce seedlings available

Good news for forest landowners who want to plant white spruce this spring; we now have some 3-year-old white spruce seedlings available!

When the DNR reforestation program’s seedlings went on sale this past October, there was a smaller quantity of white spruce seedlings available for purchase than usual. A long, cold, snowy winter in 2018 at our seedling nursery in Boscobel and a cool, wet spring combined to adversely impact our newly germinating and young white spruce seedlings. White spruce is also one of our best sellers, as landowners enjoy the white spruce’s resistance to deer browse, moderate growth, tolerance to some shade and ability to grow in many soil types. This combination of low supply and high demand meant the available trees sold out quickly.

However, we recently learned that Minnesota DNR has a surplus of white spruce, so we were able to acquire some of their extra inventory for our customers. Wisconsin statutes allow for the exchange of seedlings between other state and USDA Forest Service nurseries as long as the seed used to grow the seedlings is appropriate for Wisconsin. In this case, the white spruce seed was from southern Minnesota and the seedlings are very appropriate for planting in Wisconsin.

The only caveat is that the Minnesota nursery is quite far north so the spruce seedlings will be available later in the spring, probably early May. If you would like to purchase white spruce or any other tree or shrub seedlings, please visit us at https://dnr.wi.gov/topic/TreePlanting/ or contact our nursery staff at (715) 424-3700.

Biochar 101 and potential applications

By Sabina Dhungana, forest products specialist, Madison, 608-220-4531

The Forest Products Services program in cooperation with the USDA Forest Service hosted a webinar highlighting the fundamentals of biochar.  Biochar is an emerging forest product that is derived from woody biomass and other organic feedstocks. The use of biochar has gained considerable interest in the agricultural field, and it presents opportunities for utilizing available biomass sources. Topics covered in the webinar included: Biochar markets and uses, biochar production systems, and applications in vegetable growing.  The webinar has been archived and can be viewed here.

Wood energy assistance for Wisconsin businesses

By Sabina Dhungana, forest products specialist, Madison, 608-220-4531

The Wisconsin Statewide Wood Energy Team (SWET) is a public-private partnership that aims to expand markets for converting woody biomass into energy while advancing installation of commercially viable wood energy systems in both public and private facilities. These efforts support forest restoration, wildfire mitigation, urban wood utilization and other sustainable forest management goals. The WI DNR Forest Products Services program is a member of SWET and currently coordinates the team’s efforts across Wisconsin.

SWET was initially established in 2015 by a USDA Forest Service grant. During the grant period, the team completed seven wood energy analysis projects in Wisconsin for a wide range of entities such as wood industries, hospitals, cheese factories, and schools. Facilities sought out this free assistance to better utilize locally available wood residues while understanding potential cost savings of wood energy. SWET members worked with interested facilities by collecting essential information such as facility energy needs, utility costs, woody biomass availability, and any potential future energy demands. The cost/benefit analysis was then conducted in cooperation with an engineering firm contracted by USDA Forest Service.

With the continuation of wood energy efforts across Wisconsin, your facility can take advantage of this free assistance from SWET. If you are interested in a free wood energy analysis, please contact Sabina Dhungana via email at Sabina.Dhungana@wisconsin.gov or call her at 608-220-4531.

Three perspectives on wood seminar

By Scott Lyon, forest products specialist, Green Bay, 920-360-3722

The Forest Products Services program has partnered with Madison College’s Cabinetmaking and Millwork Program to sponsor an event titled, “Three Perspectives on Wood.”

Speakers will highlight recommendations for sourcing and using wood properly for best performance. This event is part of the college’s annual seminar series that is geared toward educating students, builders, designers, wood product manufacturers, and woodworkers.

“Three Perspectives on Wood” will be held on December 3, 2019 at Madison College, Truax Campus. For more information or to attend, please visit the event website.

Forest inventory analyst joins the Forestry Division

By Collin Buntrock, forest products team leader, Rhinelander, 608-286-9083

I am very pleased to announce that Brian Anderson has accepted the Forest Inventory Analyst position with the Forest Products Services team. This position leads Wisconsin’s statewide forest inventory and analysis (FIA) programs for the Division of Forestry and serves as a key consultant for both internal and external customers, providing data analysis and reporting for both urban and rural FIA, forest regeneration monitoring (FRM), and state forest lands (WisCFI). His first day was October 14, and he is based in Rhinelander.

Recently, Brian worked at the University of Minnesota as a researcher on various silviculture and growth and yield studies, in addition to part time work as a biometrician focusing on forest carbon projects. Brian received his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in forestry from the University of Minnesota, focusing his studies on quantitative silviculture, forest inventory, and biometrics. Outside of work, he enjoys running, Nordic skiing, camping, hunting, and playing and listening to music.

Brian can be reached at BrianD.Anderson@wisconsin.gov and 715-499-3291.

Forest Products Training and Events

Millyard Operations Technical Advancement Group – North – Winter Meeting
Date: December 10-12, 2019
Location: Rothschild, WI

LSLA 2020 Winter Meeting
Date: January 15-17, 2020
Location: Green Bay, WI

Indiana Hardwood Lumbermen’s Association Convention & Exposition
Date: February 3-5, 2020
Location: Indianapolis, IN

Wisconsin Local-Use Dimension Lumber Grading Workshop
Date: February 25, 2020
Location: Green Bay, WI

Custom Chair Design and Construction
Date: February 29 – March 14, 2020
Location: Antigo, WI

Wisconsin Local-Use Dimension Lumber Grading Workshop
Date: March 14, 2020
Location: Stevens Point, WI

Moulder Set-Up and Knife Grinding Workshop
Date: March 23 – 25, 2020
Location: Antigo, WI

International Mass Timber Conference
Date: March 24-26, 2020
Location: Portland, OR

Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association Spring Celebration
Date: April 9, 2020
Location: Green Bay, WI

Two division leaders announced

Two leadership roles have been filled within the Division of Forestry. Eric Zenz was named as the Southwest District Forestry Leader and Jim Warren will serve as the Field Operations Bureau Director.

Eric Zenz

Zenz has been with the division since 2002 and has been the Black River Falls Team Leader for the past six years. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in forest administration and utilization with a minor in business administration from UW-Stevens Point in 2001.

The division’s Southwest District includes the southern and western parts of Wisconsin, from Milwaukee up through Eau Claire.  Zenz will be responsible for the division’s forestry field operations in the 33 Wisconsin counties included in this district. He enjoys working in coulee country and will continue to live in Black River Falls with his wife and two children.

Photo of Jim Warren

Jim Warren

Warren has been serving as the Public and Private Forestry Section Chief since joining the Division of Forestry in 2003. He had previously been with the West Virginia Division of Forestry for 11 years after earning a Bachelor of Science in forestry from UW-Madison.

Warren enjoys hunting, fishing and boating along the Mississippi River in Grant County. He will continue to live in the Madison area with his wife and two sons and will be stationed at the Madison office with frequent trips to the Rhineland headquarters.

Included in the Forestry Field Operations Bureau are wildland fire prevention, protection, and suppression; forest fire law enforcement; prescribed fire; wildland urban interface; state and county forests; the Good Neighbor Authority; forest certification; conservation easements; private forestry; and the forestry tax law program.  Learn more about these programs on the DNR website.

Zenz and Warren start their new positions on November 24, 2019. Both will report to Forestry Operations Deputy Division Administrator Heather Berklund who is stationed at the division’s Rhinelander headquarters. They will also both serve on the division’s Strategic Leadership Team that sets policy direction and ensures that the Division of Forestry continues to work in partnership to protect and sustainably manage Wisconsin’s forests to supply a wide range of ecological, economic, and social benefits for present and future generations.

Seedling sales begin October 7

The DNR’s reforestation program will be accepting orders starting October 7, 2019 from Wisconsin forest landowners for trees and shrubs to be planted in spring 2020. For more than 100 years, the Wisconsin DNR has provided high-quality seedlings of native species, appropriate for planting throughout Wisconsin.

Seedlings grown by the state nurseries are used for reforestation and conservation plantings on private, industrial, state and county forest lands. These seedlings can provide future forest products and revenues, wildlife habitat and fodder, soil erosion control, living snow fences and aesthetics and shade to landowners and managers in every county of the state. Continue reading “Seedling sales begin October 7”

Storm recovery update

The Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and the Wisconsin DNR-Division of Forestry jointly produced a progress report on recovery efforts following the July 19-20, 2019 storms that damaged more than 285,000 acres in Barron, Polk, Langlade, Oconto and portions of Oneida, Wood and Portage Counties.

You are invited to read “After the Storm News” here. 

For additional information, visit this DNR webpage about recovering from storm damage to forests.

If you have questions, contact:
Hilary Markin, Public Affairs Officer
Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest
715-362-1354
hilary.r.markin@usda.gov
or
Kirsten Held, Forestry Outreach Specialist
Wisconsin DNR – Division of Forestry
608-219-9605
kirsten.held@wisconsin.gov