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What is a Forest?


AESTHETIC an appreciation of the beautiful (appreciate the natural state of the forest)

BARK (OUTER BARK) a protective outer layer--insulates against cold, dry, wet and pests

BIODEGRADABLE able to break down

BY-PRODUCTS something produced in addition to the main product

BRUSHING a silviculture treatment to remove brush (shrubs, herbs) and weed species which compete with seedlings for sunlight, water and soil nutrients

BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY (biodiversity) the natural variations among living organisms

CAMBIUM the growing part of the tree which produces new bark and new wood

CLEARCUTTING a silviculture system in which the old crop is cleared at one time

CONIFEROUS cone-bearing trees having needles or scale-like leaves, usually evergreen and producing wood known commercially as softwoods

DECIDUOUS term applied to trees, commonly broadleaf, that usually shed their leaves annually. Also known commercially as hardwoods

ECOSYSTEM a system or community of plants, animals and other organisms and their environment, which interacts and functions as a unit

ENVIRONMENT the surroundings and circumstances affecting people

EROSION soil that has been worn away

FIRE DEPENDENT trees that need fire to clear out the underbrush so that they may grow well; may need heat to open their cones

FIRE RESISTANT trees that can withstand some fires going through the area and remain healthy

FOREST a plant community mostly made up of trees and other woody vegetation growing fairly close together with an associated animal community

FOSSIL FUELS energy sources which are formed over millions of years from the remains of ancient plants and animals. e.g. coal, oil, etc.

HARVESTING the cutting and removal of trees from a forested area

HEARTWOOD dead wood that gives trees strength and rigidity

NATURAL the renewal of a tree crop by natural means (not by planting); eg.

REGENERATION seed is brought in by wind, birds, animals, etc. or from nearby trees

NON-RENEWABLE something that cannot replenish or restock itself -- once used it is gone


PHLOEM (INNER BARK) a spongy layer which stores food manufactured in leaves and transports it to the stem and the roots

PHOTOSYNTHESIS occurs in the leaves and needles. This is the chemical reaction whereby the leaves make food for the tree. (Water and minerals come up through the roots. The leaves absorb the sunlight while carbon dioxide is inhaled through the stomata openings. The cells containing chloroplasts combine these ingredients to make sugar which is transported to the trunk and roots, where it is changed to starch and stored for future growth. Oxygen is the tree's waste product which is released into the air for other plants and animals. Water is also a waste product that is released through the leaves.)

PRESCRIBED BURN the knowledgeable application of fire to a specified land area to accomplish planned management objectives (i.e. the carefully planned use of fire to produce a desired affect)

RECYCLABLE something that can be broken down to a simpler form and then reformed into a useable product. e.g. paper can be returned to its pulp state and then dried into paper again.

REFORESTATION the natural or artificial restocking of an area with forest trees (also known as regeneration)

RENEWABLE something that can replenish or restock itself when used. eg. trees

RESOURCE a supply of a naturally occurring raw material--eg. oil, gas, trees

SAPWOOD (XYLEM) wood which carries water and dissolved mineral sap up the tree

SEEDLINGS a young plant grown from seed

SEED TREE selected trees are left standing, in a cutblock, to provide natural regeneration

SELECTION a continuous, uneven-aged forest is maintained by selecting trees

LOGGING of various ages and sizes for harvest. Harvesting occurs over intervals of 15-40 yrs.

SHELTERWOOD any harvest cutting of a more or less regular and mature crop, designed to establish a new even-aged crop under the protection of the old

SILVICULTURE the art and science of growing and tending a forest

SILVICULTURE a process following accepted silvicultural conditions whereby

SYSTEMS forests are tended, harvested and replaced

SITE disturbance of an area's topsoil and ground vegetation to create

PREPARATION conditions suitable for regeneration (reforestation)

SPACING the act of removing trees from a stand to decrease the stand density and distribute the crop of trees more evenly over the growing room (to prevent overcrowding so that trees have room to grow)

STAND-TENDING a variety of forest management activities carried out at different stages in the life of a stand. e.g. spacing, brushing, thinning, fertilizing, pest control, site preparation, pruning, etc.

SUSTAINABLE to be able to keep going

SUSTAINABLE concept of producing a biological resource under management

FOREST practices that ensure replacement of the part harvested by regrowth or reproduction before another harvest. eg: managing a forest so that there will always be a healthy forest and enough trees for the future.

TECHNOLOGY use of a scientific method

THINNING process of removing excess and poorer quality trees for the purpose of improving the growth and value of remaining trees

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