Can a forest be overused? What is the right measure?

This question was answered by forester Elena Schmidtmeyer in an interview.

Forests can definitely be overused. This has also happened over long periods in the past. Until the beginning of the 20th century, for example, large quantities of forest litter, i.e. needles and leaves, were removed from the forest for use in agriculture. This practice interrupts the natural nutrient cycle in the forest and leads to severe soil depletion. Especially since litter raking was practiced in many areas for several centuries. Simply put, the right measure is where only as much wood is harvested as will grow back. The soil condition, vitality and regeneration capacity of the forest are thereby maintained or improved. Regarding deadwood: increasing the amount of deadwood in the forest is of great importance. Deadwood is crucial for a large number of species and therefore plays a key role for biodiversity in the forest. This is why the amount of deadwood in Bavarian forests is continuously increasing. Of course, trunk sections or new standing, dead trees must also be added continuously as the deadwood decomposes.

The background to the interview:

We are committed to reforestation. One way of doing this is to make donations and to plant trees. On the other hand, we also contribute to making the topic of “reforestation” more visible to the general public. We interviewed forester Elena Schmidtmeyer and filmed a series of video clips with her that answer many interesting questions on the subject.

Why do we get involved and how exactly do we do it? Please read our separate article here.

Would you like to watch all the videos with forester Elena Schmidtmeyer now? You can already find them on our YouTube channel.

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