Lets start at the beginning (Or somewhere near)
Prehistoric man sheltered in caves
We don’t live in caves anymore
But maybe we should, if we continue to destroy the environment for our unsustainable lifestyles.
If you do live in a cave please note we are very impressed & interested in your story so send in pics of your lifestyle.
Touchwood represents a group of companies & likeminded Australians that have a vision to minimise the impact on the environment yet supply Australians with beautiful timbers.
Is this possible?
We say yes.
Touchwood, aims to educate and involve the community about our sustainable timber future and how we can all make a difference. Historically, timber companies have used wood from native and crown land, or worse, imported unsustainable wood from overseas rainforests. Radial Timber & Heartwood plantations purchased disused farm land and have planted native forests with spectacular success. Surprise when native trees thrive!
Just because it’s never been done before doesn’t mean it can’t be done.
Add logos here Preschem Heartwood RT OT NM AC Osmosis
Providing habitat for native fauna
Beautiful old growth forests have been lost to all Australians wiping out flora & fauna because of our needs for timber products. When supply cannot meet demand we import & destroy our neighbours environment – because we can.
An example is the merbau sourced from Indonesian rainforest so that Aussies can have BBQ on nice decking!
Can you love both trees and timber?
I think some people struggle to. Preferring the tree over timber. Some just happy to use offcuts as firewood but less sure about timber particularly when you see denuded land that was once a most cherished place.
And we take off our hat to you if you are also not using timber products in your daily life but don’t be fooled that the alternative is any better ie; plastic, steel & concrete are all using energy to manufacture or are bio products of oil and are much worse than timber plus often very ugly products (plastic decking – yuk)
So most of us love trees and we agree that timber is part of our daily lives (bit like petrol for the car)
Can we meet in middle grounds? And is this middle ground not only a great solution that has been demonised by lack of knowledge, lack of trust and not much thought into alternative solutions.
Touchwood solution for growing, farming and milling trees is not only the best option but the only solution.
Creates an alternative to destroying old growth forests and even timber is good for you (stores carbon long term)
My favourite is a really big mature tree but I have favourite timber finishes that I marvel at and touch over and over again – hence the saying touchwood.
Did you know?” facts- about trees, wood, timber
Trees are the longest living organisms?
– Trees only get 10% of their life source from the soil. The other 90% comes from the atmosphere?
– The Amazon is home to 81.5 million acres of trees?
– The Bristlecone Pine are the oldest living trees, and one the oldest living tree is 4600 years old?
– Doctors us taxol from the Pacific Yew trees that grow in northern Idaho to treat types of cancer?
– Willow bark contains salicin and is used to make Aspirin?
– 1 out of every 4 pharmaceutical product contains some derivative from tropical plants?
– 1000 trees remove 100 tons of CO2 per year?
– There is no net carbon increase in the atmosphere from burning wood?
– Trees, with their roots, prevent and control erosion?
– Street trees remove 60% of the air pollution?
– A Birch tree is capable of producing 1,000,000 seeds a year?
– Dendrochronology is the scientific word for calculating a tree’s age by counting its rings?
– Every year we lose 42 million acres of trees?
They ‘Talk’ to Each Other- Did you know that certain types of trees warn each other when they’re under siege by insects? Since the late 1970s, researchers have studied this phenomenon in willows and poplars. Collectively, they’ve found that trees infested with insects will produce an excess of chemicals in their leaves. These chemicals not only reduce the nutritional value of the leaves for the insects, but also warn neighboring trees. Following the warning, nearby trees will begin to produce the same chemicals, defending themselves from a similar attack.
They’re Cheap and Natural- RecyclersTrees are all-mighty recyclers. They regulate our air quality through photosynthesis, absorbing nearly aton of CO2 in a lifetime and produce about 260 pounds of oxygen a year. Now they are being used to recycle waste. Willow trees are used in Enkoping, Sweden, to clean sewage sludge, reuse wastewater, and recycle liquid from landfills. The town spreads its waste around the trees, which, in turn, decompose and recycle it. Enkoping capitalizes on the faster-growing trees by harvesting them for “biomass [electricity] production.”
They Save You Money- Mature trees that are “properly placed around buildings” can protect a household from excessive exposure to the sun or wind. According to the U.S. Forest Service, such tree cover can conserve air conditioning use by 30 percent and heating use by 20 to 30 percent. But wait, there’s more! The Service also states that “healthy, mature trees add an average of 10 percent to a property’s value.” Sounds like a win-win. – Most people know that trees near buildings can raise property prices by an average of 14 percent in the U.K. and as much as up to 37 percent in the U.S. But trees can also have an impact on the energy used for heating and cooling a building, reducing air conditioning costs by as much as 30 percent and saving 20 to 50 percent on energy for heating. This is because as well as providing shade, a large tree can also transpire as much as 378.5 liters (100 gallons) of water into the air per day. This has a cooling effect roughly equivalent to 10 single room-sized air conditioning units operating 20 hours a day!
They’re Just As Stressed As We Are- Trees are very sensitive to their environments. The disruption of an ecosystem—whether caused by man or nature—can greatly stress a tree. In urban environments, poor soil quality, overcrowded tree planters, and competition for water between different plants are the most common stressors to trees. If not treated, such stress can inhibit a tree’s growth or photosynthesis cycle. So, the next time you see a stressed tree, help it out! Keep your soil nutrient-rich and give your trees plenty of space to breath.
A single 30-meter-tall mature tree can absorb as much as 22.7 kilograms (50 pounds) of carbon dioxide in a year, which over it’s lifetime is approximately the same amount as would be produced by an average car being driven 41,500 kilometers (25,787 miles). The same tree could also produce 2,721 kilograms (5,998.78 pounds) of oxygen in a year, which is enough to support at least two people. According to the University of Melbourne, because trees grow faster the older they get, their capacity for photosynthesis and carbon sequestration increases as they age.
Why don’t we farm our own timber?
In recent times both Paper & Chipboard products have been farmed with great success, but you can’t farm timber plantations that need 40 – 60 years growth before the tree gets to a size suitable to mill.
It all starts with the radial timber method of milling.
Our trees can be milled from 22 years and still yield the same as a 40 year + old tree. This means we can now farm trees for timber. And we are.
Touchwood has planted up to 2,000,000 trees in Gippsland Victoria. First plantations went in 2003
We plant trees that are indigenous to Gippsland – Yellow String Bark, Southern Mahogany, Silvertop and Spotted Gum.
The forest in time becomes a hybrid landscape where our needs for timber join with acceptance of native animals.
This is the future solution to supply timber for our communities and protect native and old growth forests. There is no other alternative except importing the timber which is the worst of all solutions
To be or not Timber
What are our options;
- Replace Timber with other products
- (Plastic, Hay, Steel)
- Import Timber from overseas sources
- Could be rainforest timber with major devastating results
- Old Growth Forests
- Protect what little we still have
- Native Forests
- Demand drives this option
- Needs more sustainability guidelines & management
- Should faze out with plantation plans
- Native trees with a sustainable management program
- Best option
We need to be planting more trees in long rotation. High value plantations to meet out future timber needs and take the strain off our native forests
‘Sustainable timber’ is timber that has been harvested in an ecologically responsible way. That is, each tree that is cut down for use is replaced by another tree that has either been naturally grown or planted. As well as replacing the tree, sustainability includes ensuring that there is no damage to other species and that biodiversity, climate, and water cycles are maintained as normal.
Touchwoods supply plan
|Native Forests||Regulate||Phase out||STOP|
|Old Growth Forests||STOP|
|Plantations||Develop||Invest||High Value Plantations|
|Imported Rain Forests||STOP|
Plan for 30 year+ rotations
It is Radial timber’s plan to become self sufficient and totally sustainable by managing saw log plantations of durable hardwoods in Gippsland. It has a 20 year plan to establish up to 1000 hectares of Yellow Stringybark, Southern Mahogany, and Spotted Gum pruned and thinned plantations.
To date, 700 hectares have been planted at Woodside, Alberton and Sale with the oldest trees 10 years old (planted 2003). This is a long term commitment as we expect to harvest our first logs in 2020 but it is one we are totally committed to. In the short term, we intend to seek out and utilize whatever plantation material is available and to only process logs that have been obtained from sustainably managed forests.
Heartwood Plantations develops beautiful Australian hardwood plantations for the highest value timber. Each plantation is carefully designed to suit the landscape in which it is grown. Heartwood Plantations establishes species with desirable timber, rapid growth and known markets, to ensure the maximum return on your investment.
Each of our plantations is managed to produce valuable appearance-grade timber to be enjoyed and admired.
Plantation investments are established on existing land assets or a suitable property can be sourced to meet your specific needs.
More about Radial Timber
The process of radial sawing was specifically designed to maximise the recovery of sawn timber from smaller logs. As such, radial sawing has a range of both environmental and technical benefits. These range from helping to make indigenous hardwood plantations more viable to maximising the yield of high value timber products from a log. This is a summary of the main environmental and technical benefits that stem from radial sawing:
More timber out of a log
- Fewer trees are required to produce a given volume of timber.
- Potential for lower fuel usage, greenhouse emissions as well as negative impact on soil, water and native wildlife.
- Reduced reliance on manufactured building products that may actually have greater negative environmental impacts.
- Better planning for future timber requirements.
High value products from younger trees
- More of each log sawn can end up as high value, versatile products rather than being put to lower value uses.
- Less pressure on old growth forests as quality timber requirements can be met from plantation and regrowth forests.
- Processing younger trees makes plantation forestry more attractive economically and thus this resource becomes a realistic option for solving the worlds housing shortage.
- Plantations established for pulp/fibre may potentially be used for timber production.
Timber products with consistent growth ring orientation
- More stable products as growth stresses are released evenly in each timber section.
- Less energy required as some products are stable enough to be supplied “green” (ie. notdried before use).
- Less down stream wastage as some products are left “rough sawn” (ie. notre-processed or “dressed”).
- More appearance grade products that show off “back sawn” timber grains and feature.
Innovative, durable products
- Radial sawing is based on the natural principle of cutting logs into wedges and therefore many products feature bevelled edges or are sold as wedge profiles.
- Innovative products like “NEW DECK” have set new standards in decking design.
- Durable Victorian hardwoods such as Silvertop Ash or Sth Mahogany mean a wide range of external cladding, decking, screen boards and even flooring are available.
- Unique products mean that end users can also have unique structures.
- Radial timber products do not require chemical treatment
Environment – Sustainable
The radial process produces more wood from fewer trees. It is an ideal process for processing small diameter plantation sawlog
Quality – Consistent
Every piece of radially sawn timber is cut in exactly the same way so our products perform predictably.
- Point of Difference – Unique
Many of the Radial Timber profiles are unique and interesting designs which is why project featuring our products win so many awards
Chain of Custody – Traceable
Radial Timber is growing, drying, milling and selling all it is own product. We are in controlled of where the timber comes from and how it is processed
The bio plant
Our Yarram Timber mill has been extensively upgraded to include a bio plant to create energy for electricity. Within normal operations of a timber mill we can create enough energy to supply the township of Yarram all year around. It’s a big step for the town and the incumbent electricity supplier to accept and understand this, but the opportunity is there and a spin off benefit of or mill solutions
A journey of sustainable timber that involves the community.
Touchwood, aims to educate and involve the community about our sustainable timber future and how we can ALL make a difference.
Historically, timber companies have used wood from native and crown land, or worse, imported unsustainable wood from overseas rainforests. Radial Timber under their Heartwood plantation have purchased disused land and planted native trees so that the next generation can also live in houses.
If you are that way inclined that you still live in a cave to protect the environment remember that in doing so you are ruining a good cave.