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Practically the whole of 1200 acres of millable timber in the Balmoral State forest was flattened by the 90 miles per hour gale on Friday and the subsequent snowstorm. This is the estimate of the devastated area by officials of the State Forestry Department after an inspection yesterday.

It was the largest and most useful trees that suffered most. Thousands, on thousands of trees, planted between 1918 and 1926, were either uprooted or smashed down by other trees. The timber stands affected consisted of fast growing insignis pine, which, because of their shallow rooting in shingle ground, were easy prey for the violent nor'-west wind that preceded the record snowstorm.

There seemed to be general agreement among the forestry officials that the shingle nature of the ground at Balmoral was unsuitable for fast growing trees and that the present catastrophe was a' legacy from the past policy of using the poorest of lands for State forest projects. A pronounced feature of the 25,000 acres of plantations at Balmoral was that slower growing trees, such as ponderosa and Corsican pine, were not affected.

The plantations Avill now provide a salvage job for the next few years, after which it is expected there will* be regeneration. Large quantities of millable timber will be saved, while Christchurch is assured of firewood supplies for years to come. During the gale men working in the forest, including military defaulters, miraculously escaped death.

OTHER PLANTATIONS DAMAGED P.A. CHRISTCHURCH, this day. A fine plantation of 137 acres of pinus insignus trees, known as Mcintosh's reserve, at Norwood, has been flattened by the recent gale and snow. This plantation is 21 years old. Reports also have been received of damage to other plantations owned by the Selwyn Plantations Board, but so far the superintendent, Mr. E. A. Cooney, has been unable to assess the damage.

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Bibliographic details

TREES FLATTENED, Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 168, 18 July 1945

Word Count

TREES FLATTENED Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 168, 18 July 1945

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