Black Walnut Trends In Wisconsin

By Brian Anderson, DNR Forest Inventory Analyst, Rhinelander and Alex Rosenflanz, DNR Forest Inventory Specialist, Madison

Acres Of Black Walnut Forests
Black walnut is a valuable and highly sought-after species found in the Midwest and Eastern United States. In Wisconsin, its distribution is primarily limited to the state’s southern region, although scattered sites are found farther north. The total acreage of black walnut in the state has increased nearly three times, from approximately 35,065 acres in 2004, to 101,274 acres in 2019.

Of that total, surprisingly, only 10% is attributed to stands established by artificial regeneration. The distribution of acres by stand age shows a boon in stands aged 31 to 90 years since 2004, with younger age classes remaining relatively steady since 2009 (Figure 1). Relatively few stands have reached ages over 90 years.
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New Forest Products Specialist In Dodgeville

By Collin Buntrock, DNR Forest Products Team Leader

I am very pleased to announce that Brian Zweifel has accepted the statewide Forest Products Specialist position in Dodgeville. Brian’s first day was Feb. 14.

Brian brings a diverse background in forestry and partnership development and will play a key role in forest products training, business and market development regionally and across Wisconsin. He has worked as a DNR forester and consulting forester and has experience with international marketing and forest products extension.

He is excited to bring his experience as a field forester and forest products extension to the forest products services team to support, promote and grow Wisconsin’s forest products industry.

Upcoming Forest Products Events

Wisconsin Local Use Dimension Lumber Grading Classes (WI LUDL) – Woodruff, Wisconsin
May 31, June 1 – 2, 2022
To register for one of these courses, please visit this webpage.

Hardwood Sawmilling Certificate – Antigo, Wisconsin
June 6 – July 1, 2022
This unique certificate prepares learners for hands-on, in-demand positions within the hardwood lumber industry. This short four-week certificate will help launch you into a lifelong, rewarding career. All classes are taught in person and utilize Northcentral Technical College’s 27,000 square foot state-of-the-art Wood Technology Center of Excellence.

The training will focus on hardwood lumber inspection; sawing, edging and trimming to maximize profits; hardwood log scaling and grading; and species identification for hardwood lumber and logs.

To learn more about this program, please visit this webpage. To register, visit the registration page.

Small Live Edge Slab Business Workshop – Grafton, Wisconsin
June 9, 2022
This one-day educational and networking workshop focuses on the business and operational skills needed to operate a live-edge slab producing sawmill business successfully. There will be on-site slab sawing demonstrations. To learn more about this workshop and register, please visit the event’s registration page.

National Firewood Workshop – Arlington, Wisconsin
June 15 – 16, 2022
This firewood industry event combines education and networking opportunities. The workshop offers discussions on business and equipment topics and outdoor sawing and firewood splitting demonstrations by multiple equipment manufacturers.  To learn more about this workshop and register, please visit the event’s registration page.

Seeking Input to Proposed Changes in Chapter 1 of Private Forestry Handbook

Chapter 1 of the Private Forestry Handbook is available for stakeholder review and comment through April 4, 2022.

This chapter covers program guidelines for DNR forestry staff regarding their work with private woodland owners, including establishing walk-through service standards and a property walk-through policy. We’re updating this chapter to establish a property walk-through policy since there was no set standard for this important interaction with private woodland owners.

To review and provide feedback on this document, please visit the DNR Forestry Stakeholder Input Page.

Document Title: Private Forestry Handbook HB2470.5

Contact Person: Kristin Lambert

Due Date: April 4, 2022

Click here to view a detailed description of document updates.

DNR To Accept Seedling Orders For The Spring Starting Oct. 4, 2021

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Division of Forestry’s reforestation program will accept seedling orders from Wisconsin forest landowners for trees and shrubs to be planted in spring 2022 starting Oct. 4, 2021. The high-quality seedlings are native species appropriate for planting throughout Wisconsin.

Seedlings grown by the state nurseries are used for reforestation and conservation plantings on private, public and tribal lands. These seedlings can provide future forest products and revenues, wildlife habitat, soil erosion control, living snow fences, aesthetics and shade to landowners and managers in every state county. Continue reading “DNR To Accept Seedling Orders For The Spring Starting Oct. 4, 2021”

Incorporating Wood Into Biophilic Design

Part II Of The “Building with Wood” Webinar Series

Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2021 at 12:00 p.m. CT

Hosted by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Forest Products Services Team

Did you know that using real wood in your home or living spaces has health benefits? Join us virtually over your lunch break to learn about biophilic design and the many benefits of building with wood. Industry expert, Criswell Davis, will be speaking about why incorporating real, natural wood in our homes, hospitals and other businesses is the path to a more sustainable future.

Register for the free webinar by visiting the link here.

About the Speaker:

Criswell Davis, President of Mighty Oaks Consulting in Louisville, Kentucky, is the founding director of the Timber & Forestry Foundation, which promotes sustainable North American hardwoods to the design community and consumers across the United States. Criswell has been in the hardwood lumber business for more than 32 years and has presented to more than 7,000 architects, designers and students worldwide over 12 years.


This event is supported by a U.S. Forest Service Landscape Scale Restoration Grant. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

USDA COVID-19 Assistance For Timber Harvesters And Haulers

On Tuesday, July 20, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it would provide up to $200 million in relief funds for timber harvesting and timber hauling businesses that have experienced losses due to COVID-19.

Loggers and truckers can apply for assistance from July 22 through Oct. 15, 2021. To be eligible for the assistance money, timber harvesting and hauling businesses must have experienced a gross revenue loss of 10% or more between Jan. 1 and Dec. 1, 2020, compared to the period of Jan. 1 to Dec. 1, 2019.

A further explanation of the available financial assistance, complete with program details and application instructions, can be found on the USDA’s website.

Wisconsin’s Forest Resource: Past, Present And Future

By Collin Buntrock, DNR Forest Products Team Leader and Brian Anderson, DNR Forest Inventory Analyst

Forests are an essential part of Wisconsin’s past and present. Wisconsin’s forests cover over 40% of the total land area, encompassing nearly 17 million acres. Since the cutover of the 19th and early 20th centuries, Wisconsin’s forests have been expanding consistently in acreage, volume and annual growth rate. Those trends largely continue today.

The U.S. Forest Service’s Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program has taken inventories of Wisconsin’s forests — and the nation’s forests as a whole — since the 1930s. This inventory program provides critical information on Wisconsin’s forests to inform how we manage, utilize, and conserve our forestland. The U.S. Forest Service administered this annual program in close cooperation with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) Division of Forestry.

Since 1968, Wisconsin has provided funding to intensify the inventory by doubling the number of permanent plots from which data are collected. This offers more reliable data on areas smaller than on a statewide basis. It is critical in a landscape like Wisconsin, given the considerable heterogeneity and great number of important forest types.

The data collected through the FIA program can be used in a variety of ways. Uses include: decisions around forest management and planning by a wide array of ownerships; assessing the sustainability of forest management practices like harvest volumes over time; taking stock of trends in forest health such as mortality related to Emerald Ash Borer and oak wilt; and evaluating wildlife habitat conditions at landscape scales such as ruffed grouse habitat. Combined with other data sources, analyses on forest health, harvesting, and species compositional changes provide essential feedback on how we manage our forests and changes we should note. Continue reading “Wisconsin’s Forest Resource: Past, Present And Future”

Preliminary Seedling Availability: Spring 2022

Proper tree planting requires a lot of decision-making. One of those decisions is which species and age are the most appropriate and cost-effective to plant. The Wisconsin Reforestation Program would like to take some of the unknowns out of that process by giving landowners and property managers an early peek at what we anticipate having available in fall 2021 for planting in spring 2022.

This list is preliminary, as some species may be added or subtracted depending on health, growth and other factors as the growing season progresses. Tree and shrub seedlings will be available to purchase on the first Monday of October (Oct. 4, 2021). Even with the expected high demand, we anticipate having various species and ages available to all customers.

The quantity designations are relative to a particular species based on historical sales and projected demand. For example, typically white pine 3-0 sales are about 250,000 seedlings. In 2022, the available quantity, due to several factors, including increased demand in 2021 for 2-year-old seedlings and a lower than anticipated seed germination in 2020, is approximately 75% of the anticipated need. Hence the quantity will be referred to as “limited.” In contrast, our balsam fir had an above-average germination, are growing great and the inventory is above the projected sales, hence an “adequate” quantity designation.

  Continue reading “Preliminary Seedling Availability: Spring 2022”