12 Sep 2019 - Rod Campbell
Forestry Corporation of NSW has begun preparations at the site of the future Sugar Pine Walk in Bago State Forest.
The Sugar Pine Walk is an iconic landmark for forest visitors and Forestry Corporation is working to continue this unique experience for future generations.
The trees lining the Sugar Pine Walk are around 90 years old, and a suitable replacement site has been selected, cleared and ready to establish a new stand of sugar pine trees, said Forestry Corporation Harvesting Supervisor, Elle Kromar.
“The trees removed from the new site are from a 1922 pinus radiata plantation, hence there are large stumps and debris remaining,” Ms Kromar said.
“We have been fortunate to have access to a Tigercat demonstration mulcher, which has spent the week grooming the site and chewing debris into mulch.”
The new site is close to the current Sugar Pines Walk and will be five hectares in total. It is currently closed to visitors to facilitate site preparations as per usual forestry operations.
The Sugar Pine Walk is a special place for locals and visitors alike — as its custodian Forestry Corporation is preserving this experience for future generations.
“We would expect some of the trees to start showing stress or becoming dangerous as they continue to age, which is why we are planning now to grow their replacements,” Ms Kromar said.
“Our hope is that when the current Sugar Pine Walk ages over the next century, we will have grown a new forest as large and majestic as the walk we see today.”
Sugar Pine is a species that was planted in the area in 1928 as a range of different exotic species were being trialled. However it’s not a species Forestry Corporation has grown or planted in recent generations.
“Our local softwood timber industry is built around radiata pine, so we have never grown sugar pine seedlings in our production nurseries and the process of growing new high quality seedlings will involve a bit of trial and error,” Ms Kromar said.
“We collected seeds from the existing Sugar Pine Walk last year and sent them to our Grafton Production Nursery to be propagated.
“Unfortunately we were unable to germinate suitable seedlings and are now looking at alternative options.”
While this is a small setback, growing a replacement Sugar Pine Walk is a long-term project and there is plenty of time to grow good quality seedlings.
The Sugar Pine Walk is a must-see for any visitors to the Tumbarumba area and located on the edge of Kopsens Road, around half a kilometre from the Batlow-Tumbarumba Road at Laurel Hill. To find out more, visit www.forestrycorporation.com.au/visit
Media contact: Rod Campbell 0428 058 549