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Woodland Creation (Commercial)

When considering the creation of commercial woodland it is important to consider both site and tree selection.  You want to ensure that you are choosing the right type of woodland to go in the right place for the right reason.

Site Selection

When considering where your woodland will be located you should first consider the aims of the woodland such as;

  • Timber Production
  • Make use of less productive ground
  • Shelter for Livestock

When you have agreed the aims you can then choose the right location.  Consider the following things when thinking about the location of your woodland;

  • Are there any issue with peat?(>50cm)
  • Are there any designations? (SSSI, Archaeology etc.)
  • Is it machine accessible? (steep ground, turning point for low loader)
  • Does/will the site have lorry access?
  • Is there suitable stacking space? (assume 20 lorry loads/week)
Woodland Creation

Some useful websites to use to help with some of these considerations would be:

Land Information Search (LIS)
Forestry Commission Map Viewer
Scotland's Soil Maps.

Tree Selection

The Forestry Commission Map Viewer website will show you suitability of different grant options for woodland type i.e. conifer, diverse conifer.

A good starting point for species choice is the Ecological Site Classification website.  Using modelled data this will give you a list of tree species which should perform well at your chosen site.

Sitka Spruce is currently the most valuable commercial conifer other examples of main commercial conifers are;

  • Norway Spruce
  • Douglas Fir
  • Scots Pine
  • Larches

Having a mix of species can help with both disease resistance and can potentially maximise return based on demand for less common species.

Grant Funding

Scottish Rural Development Program under the Forestry Grant Scheme offers both capital and management payments for woodland creation.  More information about available payments and target areas can be found here.

If you would like additional information regarding commercial woodland creation that is more specific to your needs then contact our helpline and ask for a member of the woodlands team.


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