Help for managers and owners of native broadleaved woodland

A new handbook entitled 'Managing Native Broadleaved Woodlands'

News from Forest Research: September 2010

Forestry Commission handbook 'Managing Native Broadleaved Woodlands'In the 25 years since Silviculture of Broadleaved Woodland (Forestry Commission Bulletin 62) was published, there have been substantial changes in the aims, aspirations and requirements of broadleaved woodland management. Now a new handbook entitled 'Managing Native Broadleaved Woodlands@ has been published, written by Forest Research scientists Ralph Harmer, Gary Kerr and Richard Thompson1.

The handbook aims to provide advice that will help managers understand their woodland and improve their management. A wide variety of subjects are included, from the use of grazing animals to control vegetation, identification of woodland communities and management for nature conservation, to uneven-aged silviculture, vegetation management and management planning. The background and principles of each topic are explained and case studies are used for illustration throughout. Interactions between site characteristics and historical management are considered in relation to future management options. The handbook also includes important questions that managers should ask when assessing the management options for their woodland.

Author Ralph Harmer comments:

“While the previous book remains a useful source of information, today’s woodland managers need to understand much more about wood than just trees, and there have been significant changes in the skills and knowledge they require.”

Although new information and advice has been published over the years in a wide range of research and practice notes, bulletins and handbooks, this book brings it all together into a comprehensive guide aimed specifically at managers of broadleaved woodland.

The handbook is published by The Stationery Office and was launched on 23 September at the APF International Forestry Exhibition. For more information or to order a copy, visit:

1 Richard now works for Forestry Commission Scotland.

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This and other news stories can be found in the September 2010 issue of FR News, our online newsletter.