Good price paid for monster blackwood with issues

19 items were sold at the IST Geeveston April 2014 tender, only one of which was a blackwood log. The monster blackwood log of 3.46 cubic metres sold for just under $1,500 or $430 per cubic metre. The log measured 5.1 metres long, with 104 cm and 82 cm large end (LED) and small end diameters (SED). This was a plain-grain log but with significant spiral grain and butt fluting, so getting large straight grain boards from this log will be difficult. Despite this a good price was paid.

Log 1 April 2014

Good prices were also paid for the other 18 lots comprising mostly small sassafras logs.

Even in these uncertain times quality wood is still attracting good prices.

At $430 per cubic metre a hectare of blackwood plantation would be worth approximately $120,000 at maturity.


How can I get Tasmanian farmers interested?

4 responses to “Good price paid for monster blackwood with issues

  1. 180 cubic metres of sawlog / ha from a well managed plantation is realistic, not 280.

    • My figures come from the New Zealand blackwood literature. They are projections based on numerous measurement plots and a well considered plantation blackwood growth model. I’d like to know the basis of your volume estimate Stu. Can you please elaborate?

  2. Assume 200 sph, average 55cm dbh over bark, basal area of 47 (at the very high end of competition, hence slow diameter growth by this stage). Pruned height of 6m, 5.5m clearwood sawlog produced. Underbark volume of ~0.9 cube. Hence, 180 cube / ha. Sawlog prodution above the pruned butt log, virtually none, particularly when grown without a nure crop. I’ve got all the literature you are refering to an have been to most of the NZ trial sites. Their estimates are too high. Are you aware of the mortality function within their growth model? Pruning 200 sph their model indicates ~160 sph at havest due to mortality. At their estimate of 300 cube sawlog / ha, that’s nearly 2 cube / tree. This is not achieveable. Having worked for IST in the past, I can assure you there is little or no sale opportunity for the knotty logs that would be produced above the clearwood butt log. Let’s get realistic.

    • In reality the actual recovered volumes at harvest will vary for all sorts of reasons. We should really be talking about a range of possible values and influencing factors. The best values will be actual harvest recoveries but unfortunately these very rarely get reported in the public domain even for Pinus radiata or Blue Gum plantations. I hope the New Zealand blackwood growers can get organised and at least report some pre-harvest measurements.
      The current best source of final harvest prediction model data is:
      Berrill, J‐P.; Nicholas, I.D.; Gifford, H.H. 2007. A preliminary growth model for New Zealand grown Acacia melanoxylon. New Zealand Journal of Forestry Science 37(1): 37‐56.

      Click to access 03BERRILL37137-562007.pdf

      but unfortunately its written for the statistically literate rather than the common audience.
      Thanks for your contribution to the discussion Stu. Maybe some NZ readers would like to wade in here. Any takers?

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