Sustainability underpins good forest management and as such it is important that VicForests regrows the forest in all areas where harvesting takes place.
We take pride in using multiple techniques and each area is monitored to ensure the forest returns to maturity and is left to grow and to be enjoyed by the public for many years.
All areas are sown with seed that is collected in the same area that timber harvesting has taken place and in proportion to the original species mix that was there prior to harvesting.
Each year VicForests collects Eucalyptus seed, which is placed into storage for future regeneration programs.
VicForests retains Victoria’s largest store of eucalyptus seeds. Not only are these seeds used to regrow the forest in areas which have been harvested but are also used to regrow other areas which have been affected by bushfires or other impacts to the forest.
VicForests collects seeds throughout the forest from a range of species and forest types to ensure that there will be an appropriate match for any areas requiring seeding.
VicForests' trained fire staff work in conjunction with Forest Fire Management Victoria (FFMVic) to safely conduct annual regeneration burns that play an important part in the re-growing of native forests.
Regeneration burning is undertaken when the fire risk is low and the weather is not too wet.
Victoria's eucalypt forests regenerate naturally by fire and regeneration burns are conducted to closely replicate this process.
All planned burns are authorised prior to ignition by the Chief Fire Officer and are closely supervised by expert staff.
FFMVic consists of specialist staff drawn from the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, Parks Victoria, Melbourne Water and VicForests. These staff work alongside CFA, other emergency services and communities across Victoria to protect people, property and the environment.
Once the soil bed has been prepared with the regeneration burn, seeds are then spread across the prepared areas, either via seed trees left during harvesting, or by hand or helicopter.
GPS technology is used for the most accurate seeding as it gives a higher chance of successfully regrowing the forest.
The tree then organically grows through a survival of the fittest process whereby natural selection occurs and of the 200,000 seeds sown per hectare only 10,000 seedlings might germinate.
In another 50 to 60 years there will be around 300 trees per hectare left as part of the growing forest. This is all done through a natural, organic process and we don’t use herbicides or insecticides of any kind.
Monitoring of regeneration
Following seeding, VicForests actively monitors these areas to ensure regeneration is occurring. A range of measures can be taken to help a struggling regenerating area to thrive.
When VicForests' monitoring indicates the regeneration process has been successful the areas are audited by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.
Regenerating coupes are incorporated in our Timber Release Plan (TRP), once successfully regenerated they are removed from the TRP.
Regeneration is a vital component of VicForests operations that sustains forests for future generations.
KNOW MORE ABOUT VICFORESTS
Taking care of Victorian native
forests is our life