Forest Products News

Wisconsin Forests – Rooted In Our Lives, Rooted In Our Economy

By Kelly Martinson, Program and Policy Coordinator, DNR Forest Products Team

Governor Tony Evers proclaimed the third week in October as Forest Products Week in Wisconsin to recognize forests’ essential role in the state’s environment and economy. This week celebrates Wisconsinites who work in the forest products industry while considering the many ways forest products can improve our lives. Forest Products Week also highlights Wisconsinites working in and caring for our state’s forest land. Continue reading “Wisconsin Forests – Rooted In Our Lives, Rooted In Our Economy”

Local-Use Lumber Grading Course Changing Administration

UW-Stevens Point’s Wisconsin Forestry Center is taking over the administrative component of the Wisconsin Local Use Dimension Lumber grading course from the Wisconsin DNR’s Forest Products Services team. The DNR will continue to teach the course and handle specific inquiries regarding the content of the course, but registration for upcoming courses and re-certifications for previous attendees will be handled by the Wisconsin Forestry Center.

Information regarding upcoming lumber grading courses will be available on the Wisconsin Forestry Center’s website. The DNR’s Forest Products Services “Training and Events Calendar” webpage will also continue to post links to the registration for upcoming courses. The transition of administrative duties from the DNR to Wisconsin Forestry Center is expected to be completed this summer.

Forest Products Calendar of Events

Kiln Drying Short Course: Drying Quality Lumber – Aug. 17-19, 2022

Great Lakes Kiln Drying Association will be offering a Kiln Drying Short Course in Antigo, Wisconsin, Aug. 17-19, 2022. This workshop is packed with valuable and important information for kiln operators and managers. The variety and quality of the information make this a must attend event. The workshop will focus on drying systems, controlling lumber quality, species specific drying, wood structure and drying science. Over twenty breakout topics will be covered to help you maintain a successful kiln operation.
For more information and to register, visit:

Forest Products Sales Workshop – Aug. 25, 2022

LSLA Education will be offering a one-day Forest Products Sales Workshop on Aug. 25, 2022, in Woodruff, Wisconsin. Those attending this training session will learn about the forest products industry, how personal selling fits into the overall marketing function, the basics of personal selling, and methods of identifying new customers. The course is designed to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of sales personnel. It is intended for new sales and marketing personnel or those wishing to improve their sales skills.
For more information and to register, visit:

GLTPA Logging Congress – Sept. 8-10, 2022

The Great Lakes Logging & Heavy Equipment Expo is a 3-day expo happening Sept. 8-10 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. More than 300 indoor and outdoor exhibitors attend each year to showcase the best of the best when it comes to Log Splitters, Portable Sawmills, Compact Tractors & Logging Equipment, Chainsaw Carving, Wood/Pellet Stove Dealers and more.
For more information, visit:

Upcoming Forest Products Events

Live Edge Slab Business Workshop – Grafton, Wisconsin
This one-day educational and networking workshop focuses on the business and operational skills needed to successfully operate a small sawmill business producing live edge slabs for high-quality furniture.
The educational topics covered include selecting and sourcing logs, sawing logs for making slabs, sawmilling, drying methods, processing slabs and marketing slabs. Attendees will also learn about various sawmill and woodworking equipment and drying technologies available to manufacture and add value to live edge slabs properly. In addition, there will be on-site slab sawing demonstrations and a dehumidification kiln tour.
Sponsors of this workshop include the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Urban Wood Network -Wisconsin, Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, University of Wisconsin Madison Extension, U.S. Forest Service Wood Education and Resource Center and North Carolina State University Wood Products Extension.

Who Can Benefit From Attending This Workshop?

  • Small sawmill owners and operators
  • Woodworkers
  • Retail woodworking stores
  • Lumber distributors
  • Foresters and arborists

Date And time
Thursday, June 9, 2022, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. CDT

Hoppe Tree Service
Arrowhead Rd
1009 Arrowhead Road
Grafton, WI 53024

$45 Per Attendee

To learn more about this workshop and register, please visit the registration page for the event.


National Firewood Workshop Coming To Wisconsin
Firewood plays a vital role in our state, especially in regions that do not have access to markets for small-diameter logs. This year the National Firewood Workshop will be held in Wisconsin.

The two-day educational and networking event supports the split-firewood industry by hosting business discussions with leading firewood industry professionals and offering outdoor demonstrations of firewood equipment by the leading vendors of the US and Canada.
The topics covered include business management, marketing, splitting and processor equipment, dry kiln equipment, kiln certification, transportation issues, automation, bundle packing and other topics important to a successful firewood operation.
North Carolina State University Wood Products Extension organized the workshop. Sponsors of the workshop include the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, U.S Forest Service, University of Wisconsin Madison Extension, Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, the Wood Education and Resource Center of Princeton, West Virginia and the Firewood Scout.

Date and time
Wednesday, June 15, 2022, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. CDT
Thursday, June 16, 2022, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. CDT
Doors open at 8 a.m. each day.

Arlington Ag Research Station
N695 Hopkins Road
Arlington, WI 53911
View map

$50 Per Attendee

To learn more about this workshop and register, please visit the registration page for the event.


Wisconsin Local Use Dimension Lumber Grading Classes  – Woodruff, Wisconsin
May 31, June 1 – 2, 2022
Due to a larger classroom becoming available, we are able to add a few spots for each day. To register for one of these courses, please visit this webpage.

Kiln Drying In The Lake States – What Happens Inside A Lumber Dry Kiln

By Scott Bowe, Professor of Wood Products at the University of Wisconsin’s Kemp Station and Scott Lyon, DNR Forest Products Specialist, Green Bay

The Great Lake States region produces some of the best hardwood and softwood lumber globally. Most of us have driven by a sawmill or concentration yard and have seen lumber dry kilns — rows of large rectangular buildings with massive doors.

What goes on inside these kilns? What value is added during drying? How many days does it take to dry lumber? Why dry lumber at all?

We dry lumber for several reasons. The first is to prevent fungal degradation and insect attack—a tree in the forest lives in a tough world. Decay fungi, stain fungi and insects are always looking for their chance to use the tree for a food source, home or both. Continue reading “Kiln Drying In The Lake States – What Happens Inside A Lumber Dry Kiln”

New Technology Highlighted In Publication

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Forest Products Services recently worked with UW-Extension and the Department of Agriculture Forest Products Lab to develop a technical primer highlighting vacuum drying technologies for lumber manufacturing.

This research was completed by using the vacuum kiln at Northcentral Technical College. Vacuum drying technology has recently gained attention in Wisconsin because of the availability of lower-cost vacuum kilns for smaller wood product manufacturers.

Vacuum drying utilizes a pressure vessel, a heat source and a vacuum pump to control the drying conditions under less-than-atmospheric pressure. This process is an economical alternative to conventional drying for many species under various environmental and economic conditions.

Vacuum drying can reduce drying time and be more energy-efficient than conventional steam drying. However, there are many factors to consider when comparing the two technologies. Ideal applications for vacuum kilns include high-value wood species, difficult-to-dry species (e.g. oak), timbers, large sections of logs and lumber (including live-edge slabs and wooden rounds), decorative or thick veneer and small-scale woodworking operations.

The new report describes the principles and practices of vacuum drying and discusses its advantages and disadvantages. To learn more about this technology and drying lumber, please view the recent technical report by visiting this webpage.

Lake States Woodshed Mapping Project

A group of researchers and Extension professionals from Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin are working on a “Woodsheds” mapping project (similar to the concept of a watershed) to develop an interactive web-based mapping application they hope will be useful for forest landowners, forestry professionals, and wood products industry professionals. A 5-10 minute survey is intended to find out what your information needs are, and to see if you’d like to be part of a user testing group that helps them refine this tool. Direct any survey questions to Please use this link to complete the survey by April 18th:

Restoring Coastal Wetlands With Low-Value Woody Material

By Scott Lyon, DNR Forest Products Specialist, Green Bay

Conservation partners, including Ducks Unlimited, Wisconsin DNR, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, City of Green Bay and UW-Green Bay, worked together to construct a woody breakwater to restore and enhance wetlands for wildlife and more.

The project took place in fall 2021 at the mouth of Duck Creek, offshore from the Ken Euers Nature Area in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The project involved several years of planning that brought together a team of fish and wildlife biologists, wetland and aquatic plant scientists, foresters and engineers to discuss ideas and plans to restore wetland vegetation in the Duck Creek Delta.

Steve Kaufman, DNR Forester on the Oconto Falls team, and Scott Lyon, DNR Forest Products Specialist with Forest Products Services, participated in technical advisory committee meetings and assisted in connecting the project coordinators with woody materials to be used in the structure.

The resulting breakwater structures were predominantly trees rather than a traditional breakwall composed of mostly rock and is one of the first for the bay of Green Bay and the broader Great Lakes system. Continue reading “Restoring Coastal Wetlands With Low-Value Woody Material”

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.
Continue reading “Black Walnut Trends In Wisconsin”