Preparing a site for the regeneration of tree seedlings is vital to promote the successful establishment, survival and growth of the next generation of forest on your land. Site preparation (‘site prep’) often is accomplished with bulldozers, tractors, disks, plows and other specially-built heavy equipment. Site prep achieves three objectives:

  1. Consolidates leftover logging debris and control undesirable vegetation in a manner that fosters tree growth.
  2. Tills the soil to improve the root zone conditions for the new tree seedlings.
  3. Allows sufficient bare soil for the establishment of new trees, either by planting seedlings or natural seeding.

While the costs of paying for site prep may seem high at first, studies have shown that investing in site prep will almost always reap benefits with enhanced tree growth and vigor. Site prep treatments may be used individually or in combination. For example, one site may require a (shear + pile + bed) treatment, while a different site may be prepared by using a combination of (drum chopping + herbicide spraying + burning).

Recommendations for Site Prep

Shearing-Piling

Close-up view of KG-blade

Close-up view of KG-blade.

KG-blade used for shearing during site-prep

KG-blade used for shearing during site-prep.

Raking-Piling

Root rake used to pile debris for site prep

Root rake used to pile debris for site prep.

V-Blading

Drum Chopping

View of a drum chopper

View of a drum chopper.

Close-up of drum chopper blades

Close-up of drum chopper blades.

Drum chopper being used for site prep

Drum chopper being used for site prep.

Grinding or Mulching

Bedding

This tract had a site prep treatment that included KG + pile + bedding

This tract had a site prep treatment that included KG + pile + bedding.

View of a typical bedding plow used in forestry

View of a typical bedding plow used in forestry.

This tract is a wet-natured site that has been bedded

This tract is a wet-natured site that has been bedded. Bedding may be beneficial on dry or wet sites.

Scalping or Furrowing

Herbicide Spraying

Burning

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Published in March 2009

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