Navitron Renewable Energy and Sustainability Forum

BIOMASS => General => Topic started by: thebrick on February 22, 2009, 09:05:38 PM



Title: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: thebrick on February 22, 2009, 09:05:38 PM
How much woodland do I need in oak/ash to be fully sustainable in wood? I burn about 8m3 per year and at present buy and cut from my local commune in France.


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: johnrae on February 22, 2009, 09:23:48 PM
I don't know the numbers but oak is a long life tree and takes decades to get to a decent size.  Burning good oak is "criminal", almost as bad as burning hydrocarbons.  The way things are going, in a few decades we'll be needing oak for house and ship building.

Ash on the other hand is a quick growing copice wood and I'd guess that you'd need about 10 times as much area to grown the equivalent amount of firewood if you were burning oak.

I believe that there may be other faster growing, more intensive woods suitable for firing, such as willow.

Jack


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: guydewdney on February 22, 2009, 09:29:03 PM
My mrs worked it out as about 5 acres - just - to warm our house - which is a 4 / 5 bedroom mill.

Theres good oak, and bad oak - usless oak is the thinnings, and bent stuff. Free oak comes as pallets from my local face paint shop  ???

I have also heard willow is carp - as its too high a water content


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billi on February 22, 2009, 09:44:25 PM
Oak seemed to me ; like Arcadia   a wide/spread tree in France (south)  and has  surely a good potential for burning , but who preserves these Forrest then ?  and the wild bore and the "cpe", sure thinning out makes sense
like the french Man Jean Pain did
I would consider to grow my own firewood /fuel as well

billi




Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Rooster on February 22, 2009, 11:07:36 PM
Is Oak not one of those things you plant for future generations not your own?
Surely its too slow growing to plant now and harvest anytime soon?





Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on February 22, 2009, 11:32:30 PM
coppice willow is the best i think
type "the willow bank" into google for some ideas
or it can be pollarded
cut it every 5 years and get 4 inch logs?

i think it can be done in less than 5 acres???

laters


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: lightfoot on February 23, 2009, 06:20:04 AM
It will depend on species, local growing conditions and management etc, but in round figures, you could allow around a cord of firewood per acre (0.4 hectare), per year from a woodland. 

A cord of stacked logs is 4' x 4' x 8' or 128 cu/ft (3.6m3) of which allowing for air spaces, will be around 60% wood (~2m3) or around 1 to 1.5 tonnes of logs, depending on species and how well you stack it etc etc.

So depending on whether your requirement of 8m3 refers to stacked logs or solid wood etc, as a guide in round figures, you would need somewhere in the region of 1 to 2 hectares of woodland - an Ash or mixed coppice would be ideal.  Note: Oak can be very corrosive and may have a tendency to rot any plain steel/iron parts of your WBS/log boiler that it comes in contact with - if you must burn it, make sure it's well seasoned and mix it in with some other logs.


Hope that helps,

Lightfoot.


PS, For further info, you may find this handy.... http://handbooks.btcv.org.uk/handbooks/content/section/3767


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: briand on February 23, 2009, 03:30:00 PM
If you are going to treat wood as a crop and harvest it you need to coppice rather than fell your wood. If you use hazel or willow you will be able to start coppicing after 7 to 10 years, and coppice each plant every 7 years or so. By coppicing a seventh of your trees each year you will always have some ready for next year
Not all species are happy being coppiced but hazel and willow are - but not the only ones
Their are lots of study reports on the web for instance-
http://www.coppice.org.uk/return.htm

Coppice in the heart of winter when the water content is already low, then split and stack somewhere warm and dry and it will be down to 12% moisture by the following winter. Dry willow burns just as well as dry ash - but wet willow won't burn. Moisture content in most woods on coppicing will be around 30%.

I expect there will be mains power stations running on hazel and willow within 20 years.

good luck
Brian


I expect you will need to allow an extra 30% of area to allow for the time to get up to full production - 10 years before first crop - unless you can buy some existing woodland


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Bill H on February 24, 2009, 06:50:41 AM


I expect there will be mains power stations running on hazel and willow within 20 years.


Yes, they already started.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/oxfordshire/6046774.stm

www.saxlund.co.uk/uploads///images/Plant%20Reports/Plant%20Report%20Didcot%202007%20V2.pdf

Bill


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: mespilus on February 24, 2009, 09:36:47 AM
Slough Trading Estate's power station,
(now owned by SSE) has been using wood and wood chip for a long time.

http://www.sloughheatandpower.co.uk/index.htm


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: dhaslam on February 24, 2009, 10:36:59 AM
Given the space oak is not a bad choice as a fuel source.   An oak tree I planted at the last house is quite a large tree now after about 25 years.    Oak trees have an advantage that they allow grass to grow underneath even when they are large and are a good for attracting wildlife because they host a lot of insects.   I am going to cheat a bit and get some oak trees already growing.  They can be moved quite easily with tractor and tree spade.    There should be trees available in most places as thinnings from commercial forests.    If the source forest is close the cost per tree should be quite low.   

The tree below was only about five years growing.   


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: briand on February 24, 2009, 11:40:24 AM
Hi - to try and answer your question look at this site
http://handbooks.btcv.org.uk/handbooks/content/section/3767

this quote- suggests that 3 or 4 hectares would cover your needs

A well managed coppice wood containing a full stocking of mixed broadleaved species should be able to produce about 3 tonnes of air dried wood per hectare per year (the old rule of one cord per acre per year is roughly equivalent). Output can be doubled by planting fast-growing species such as willow, poplar or alder. The average figure quoted for heating a three-bedroomed house using wood only is 7-9 tonnes of air dried wood per year, though this figure will vary greatly with location, type of house, insulation and other factors. For most householders, an option of using wood in addition to other fuels is more realistic.

For a three-bedroomed household to be fully self-sufficient in wood fuel would therefore require about three hectares (7.5 acres) of coppice. This could be worked on a ten year rotation, in ten cants, each 0.3 hectare (0.7 acre). Each cant should produce between 7-9 tonnes of air dried wood when cut.


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Justme on February 24, 2009, 11:42:18 AM
Do you have your own tree spade? As I have heard that they are very costly to hire in.

Justme


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Bill H on February 24, 2009, 11:54:45 AM
For most householders, an option of using wood in addition to other fuels is more realistic.

For a three-bedroomed household to be fully self-sufficient in wood fuel would therefore require about three hectares (7.5 acres) of coppice. This could be worked on a ten year rotation, in ten cants, each 0.3 hectare (0.7 acre). Each cant should produce between 7-9 tonnes of air dried wood when cut.

Greetings.

I agree with this, however it is always interesting to put things in perspective..... 

UK land under some kind of cultivation is around 18 million hectares.
If all that were planted to wood, that should be enough for 6 million houses.

However, there are 25 million households in the UK....   surrender:

Wood can help, but it is no silver bullet.

Best regards

Bill





Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: dhaslam on February 24, 2009, 12:11:44 PM
The tree spade belongs to my cousin.   He has one about twice as big as well.    They need a big tractor or JCB to work.   I'm not sure what the charge per days is but it could be something like 1000 euro per day but it becomes quite economical if the source trees are close.   He will have to use a trailer for mine but they should fit on one load.   I am also going to move trees from my old house.   One of the trees is is too big for the spade and he is planning to use a different system, using compressed air to blow the soil from the roots.   


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Justme on February 24, 2009, 03:10:59 PM
yeh I had heard numbers like 1000 per day. Air spades are good too.

Justme


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: charlieb on February 24, 2009, 04:23:45 PM
Do these transplanted trees really do OK?    Many of the (slighly smaller) ones I've transplanted by hand, especially beech, have ended up dieing.   I've also heard that you're as well transplanting really small stuff - it takes the big ones a couple of years to recover from the moving shock, so the littluns will have caught up by then anyway.   Experience?  Thoughts?    (Not that I'm going to go spend  a grand hiring one of these PTO spades). 

C


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: dhaslam on February 24, 2009, 04:37:45 PM
Small trees can survive easily because the roots are contained within the clay plug lifted  by the spade.   Larger trees have their roots cut and it is recommended that they be partly cut for a full year before moving.  This encourages the tree to form new shorter roots.   The loss of root area can be compensated for by constant watering,   The easiest way is too use a barrel of water and arrange to have a constant drip.   In any case it is easier to move trees when they are dormant.     There is a danger with global warming that a lot of shallow rooted trees like beech will start dying  even without moving them  so it isn't surprising that there are a lot of failures.   


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billt on February 24, 2009, 05:30:28 PM
The best way of getting lots of trees is to plant whips. They cost about 25p each for common native species, are dead easy to plant (only need a hand spade) and establish really well. You have to plant them when they are dormant, and they'll need protection if you have rabbits or deer.

Transplanting trees is only for those with loads of money who want an instant feature!


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billi on February 24, 2009, 07:39:02 PM
I planted about 3000  willow ,Alder , Poplar (Aspen)  for a coppice woodland idea  for later fire wood

The  bare rooted willow i bought for  less then 50 pence a plant   and cut it into about 4 cuttings that i just sticked in the ground (at least  4 to10 inch )

This winter i took further cuttings to increase the density

Thats the result after one and a half year   

Billi


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: StBarnabas on February 24, 2009, 08:33:40 PM
Billi
Poplar is an interesting choice it has a bad press. Possibly Aspen is better? Ash and Willow I can understand; indeed they are part of the greening plan for StBC.


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Taffyboy on February 24, 2009, 08:48:17 PM
I have access to a 10 acre, 40 yr old woodland here, have someone from the Oxfordshire Woodland Trust visiting on Monday to give free advice, should be good!
In the meantime I'm felling standing seasoned beech like no tomorrow.... ;D

Lurvely and warm here...


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Treebeard on February 24, 2009, 08:48:56 PM
Poplar is fine as firewood, it seasons quite quickly if it is cut to log lengths. It burns quite quickly though, great for an instant burst of heat.


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billi on February 24, 2009, 09:22:55 PM
Quote
Billi
Poplar is an interesting choice it has a bad press. Possibly Aspen is better? Ash and Willow I can understand; indeed they are part of the greening plan for StBC.

The Plan was and is to use fast growing  wood and straight , so minimal work involved  and then cut the straight  shoots into 1 meter long bundled with a hemp line  , fed into a  wood gasifying boiler ( similar sized  like a square  straw bale )  in one  piece   ( perhaps too heavy , will see,  hope the forklift battery will help   ;D)

Or shredder it and use a wood chip burner .... I am a bid mad about it, to reduce my manual work compared to the gain ... arent we all a bit lazy ?


Billi


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on February 24, 2009, 11:02:55 PM
billi
I am sure i have said this before but a simple gasifying heater is a ceramic/ russian/ masonary stove.
two burns a day and it acts as a big thermal store, the wood you feed it with should be pretty thin as well so coppice ideal.
you need the space for it though.

laters


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billi on February 24, 2009, 11:29:32 PM
daftlad

I like these masonry stoves , but doubt Russia  is the  origin (might be wrong )

Ours in Bavaria was built and about  10 ton heavy  ( i guess) and its a nice memory for me (was 14  to 22 years of age)

It worked 100 % hot and was a cool  setup , but now i am in Ireland  ;D  so no heavy winter and only need  heat in small doses ....  and like to mix solar heating and wood ... so i guess has to be a thermal store


Sure i still think about an Idea to utilize  a masonry stove  to combine with a solar Air heating Idea ( just to pass on the Warm air of the panels through the long winding clay  chimney   in the stove )  and have the let me say 10 ton heavy clay block as a huge radiator

Next live i will be an Inventor  ;D

Billi


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on February 24, 2009, 11:46:27 PM
Billi
I don't think they originated in russia but they certainly use the concept well.
I think they could be combined with passive solar very well but not so good combined with other solar (not enough heat) but i may be wrong.
the reason i bang on about ceramic stoves is they are simple and efficient 90 percent as opposed to 75 in a metal wood stove or less and will burn any old rubbish.

laters


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billi on February 24, 2009, 11:53:26 PM
daftlad

totally  agree with you they outperform most(all)  metal stoves  easy

Billi


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Taffyboy on February 25, 2009, 02:10:08 AM
Unless you want to boil your whites in them..


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on February 25, 2009, 02:21:28 AM
I have seen masonry stoves with hotplates and an oven
laters


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: dhaslam on February 25, 2009, 10:16:45 AM
These stoves were fine in old houses with solid walls and enormous heat loss.  In a modern insulated house they would cook the inhabitants.   


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on February 25, 2009, 01:22:27 PM
These stoves were fine in old houses with solid walls and enormous heat loss.  In a modern insulated house they would cook the inhabitants.  
Not true, because they are only fired twice a day and the masonry is kept at a relatively low temperature to prevent cracking, the output is surprisingly low. The main problem is the low output in relation to size (they are just too big and heavy for modern houses)
laters


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billi on February 25, 2009, 07:54:59 PM
Ours in Bavaria was fired up only  twice a week  ;)  perhaps 4 times a week  in winter ( down to 20 below freezing )  , but true Dhaslam   it was an old Bavarian Farmhouse ( 3 feet solid sandstone walls )

And thats why i cannot recommend them for low  heat needing houses , but there are super efficient maissionary stove  inserts available that can control the amount of heat going to a thermal store (buffer tank )  and heat your let me say 5 tons of clay around them   to keep the open living area warm , without touching the thermal store /radiator setup  in the morning

I know you all get bored with my German links   , but that one does 30 kw to water store and 1.5 kw to 4 kw (variable ) to the room ....  and burns twice the flame ( gasifying idea )

http://www.zukunft-sonne.de/powall/POWALL_Vario_K_Flyer_7-07.pdf

Billi


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: StBarnabas on February 25, 2009, 10:12:25 PM
Hi DH
Curiously the first person who was famous for replanting trees was born about 10 miles away from StBC. His Was arguably the most famous landscape gardener of all time (certainly in these islands.) His name was "Capability" Brown. There is a move to do some landscaping herein Northumberland. Possibly your cousin could quote?
StB


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: dhaslam on February 25, 2009, 11:24:19 PM
My cousin did his forestry degree in Scotland and there were  a lot of good ideas from lecturers there. 


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: lightfoot on February 26, 2009, 08:52:25 AM
Hello thebrick (OP) - are you still with us.....or have you gone a little cross-eyed  ;D


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on March 01, 2009, 01:53:22 AM
daftlad banging on about masonary stoves again.
a quote from the Missouri Department of natural resources

Size of Unit:
The masonry stove, as described in this publication, with a firebox exterior of 27 x 36 inches, is
large enough to adequately heat a 1200 to 1500 square foot residence, when insulated to R30
ceilings, R20 walls and R13 floors. This also assumes good weatherstripping, joint caulking and
double glazed windows. Heat distribution by directional fans or duct work will be required to
adequately disperse the heat that this stove is capable of producing. Twenty pounds of air dry
wood burned in a masonry stove will deliver approximately a net value of 112,000 BTU.
With the use of special sized firebrick or castable clay a vertical flue run masonry stove could be
constructed with an outside ornamental wall dimension of 25" x 25' x 6 feet high. Allowing for
safety spacing with a heat shield the masonry stove would occupy a space of approximately 39 x
39 inches. This is very similar to the space required for a large radiant heat style stove. The
weight of the unit would also be greatly reduced. The cost factor is uncertain as fewer but more
costly materials are required, also molds are required to form the castable clay.

this is a link to the full text

http://www.dnr.mo.gov/pubs/pub781.pdf

I dont think they have to be massive

has anyone actually built one of these because they look brill and i would like to know more

laters


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on March 01, 2009, 01:57:29 AM
a slightly smaller one


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Stefan (S.T.E.F.) on March 01, 2009, 05:46:31 PM
Can anybody recommend a good online shop where to get poplar, ash, hazel and sweet chestnut ?

Stefan


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billt on March 01, 2009, 06:55:41 PM
Presumably you're talking about plants rather than firewood? Then I've used Buckingham Nurseries who sell bare rooted trees at reasonable prices. I bought some hedging from them 5 years ago and they have established well. Mind you they did take 6 weeks to dispatch the order and it was very late in the season when they went in!

If you want Nothofagus Procera, which has been recommended on the Greenbuilding forum as a good fast growing firewood tree, then Heathwood Nurseries http://www.heathwood.co.uk/2004/fieldgrown.htm have them listed, although I haven't used them myself.

You may find that finding a local tree nursery is worth the effort, they will usually be cheaper than internet suppliers.

Having said that I've just found that the local nursery that I've used recently have a web site www.johnholliday.co.uk


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: lightfoot on March 01, 2009, 08:16:38 PM
Hi Stefan - I'm not sure exactly where you stay, but here's a couple of links for some sources North of the border....

http://www.christie-elite.co.uk

http://treenurseryscotland.org.uk/list.html


Good luck,

Lightfoot.


PS,  you don't see (or should I say, I've never seen) much Sweet Chestnut in the North of Scotland - apart from being non-native, I guess it may be a bit cold etc.



Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Stefan (S.T.E.F.) on March 01, 2009, 08:37:46 PM
Yes, I did mean plants. No local nursery, so will have to rely on good online shop.
Like to get stock from different suppliers.
Suppose it might be a bit cold for sweet chestnut, was hoping to grow just a few sheltered by other trees...

Stefan


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: billi on March 01, 2009, 09:01:37 PM
Quote
No local nursery, so will have to rely on good online shop

My nurseries here in Ireland deliver nation wide (ok when bigger orders  ) 

I planted  quite a few  Spanish /sweet chestnut here at the coast of Ireland  and its not growing too good (  quite slow and small ) , but still grows

Billi


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Woodenstop on March 01, 2009, 10:22:47 PM
Have a look at this company

http://www.perriehale.com/default.asp (http://www.perriehale.com/default.asp)

Andy


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Eleanor on March 01, 2009, 11:28:35 PM
Lightfoot, thanks for the Christie Elite link. I think we'll give them a go. Bill, I can agree that Buckingham are good too, we used to buy from them when we lived there  :garden


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Taffyboy on March 01, 2009, 11:56:32 PM
Interesting that English Heritage, when replanting, refuse to use Beech in southern counties as global warming, they predict, will wipe out a lot of the beech down 'ere because they are so shallow rooted..


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: charlieb on March 02, 2009, 01:36:14 PM
Alba trees is my local (SE Scotland), and highly recommended for cell grown so you can plant any time of year (I have planted mid summer with pretty good results).   http://www.albatrees.co.uk/   They do an internet thing through the woodland Trust, so the markup from local prices is at least going to a good cause.  http://www.native-tree-shop.com/ .  Though looking at the prices just now you're MUCH better off buying direct from Alba.
C


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: kristen on March 08, 2009, 08:11:42 PM
Sorry for late reply. I have used, and would recommend, Ashridge Trees (http://store.ashridgetrees.co.uk). But too late now for bare root until November 2009 - I think?


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Brandon on March 08, 2009, 08:37:40 PM
daft lad I do hope that this was a slip of he finger!!

"wall dimension of 25" x 25' x 6 feet high."


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: daftlad on March 08, 2009, 08:55:30 PM
Not my typing (copy and paste) but no excuse. it would be a funny looking stove with those dimensions or maybe it isn't a stove at all, sounds more like a wall?
I have found some other interesting sites on masonry stoves if anyone is interested, i dill try to be a little more carefuk with the bingers.
laters


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: lightfoot on March 08, 2009, 09:21:27 PM
Evening daftlad,

You may of already seen them - but there's a number of masonry stove related links etc, in this old thread that may be of interest to yourself and others....

http://www.navitron.org.uk/forum/index.php/topic,3525.0.html


Lightfoot.


PS, it may just be my memory - but I was just reading back though the above 'Russian/Masonry High Thermal Heater Burning Wood' thread and I'm sure there were more posts/info links before - maybe they have been deleted or lost when the forum/server was upgraded etc  ???



Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: thebrick on January 05, 2010, 08:48:32 PM
Hi folks
Well I've been away some time, but I'm back again since so have decided to buy 3 hectarces as a start. Poplar cherry and horsechestnut.
thanks
thebrick


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: Ancient Brewer on January 07, 2010, 12:01:48 AM
How about Birch?

If you have any heathland nearby often you will find the local conservation group clearing birch saplings. Years ago in Norfolk I got 30 Birch trees all about 5ft tall as a result of helping the local trust for the day. They were quite pleased they were going to be replanted - normally they just burned them.


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: charlieb on January 07, 2010, 10:39:22 PM
Good for you if you kept them all alive Brewer.   I find they're a pain to transplant - annoying, as they always seem to seed everywhere except where you want them, and I can't bring myself to pay money for birch seedlings.   I only seem to manage about 25% survival (though I do tend to be a bit rough when pulling/digging them up).


Title: Re: How much wooodland do I need?
Post by: AlanM on January 07, 2010, 11:09:54 PM
Birch is often difficult to transplant. Usually the smaller the plant the better success you will have. Bigger trees much more difficult to establish than other species.

Alan