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174   COMMISSION OF CONSERVATION

abundant on the coarser granitic soils, while the white pine predominated on the deeper, finer-textured soils of the amphibolite and crystalline limestone. At present, single trees, or widely separated groves, constitute all the pine of commercial value. With the possible exception of the pine of the Blue mountain region, the cost of harvesting would be prohibitive. Fifty years ago lumbering operations were commenced on the area, and were continued for 25 years. Since these operations ceased, the area has been picked over twice, the last time three years ago. These former pine lands have all been burned at least once, and some of them eight times, since the lumbering was begun. It is the present condition on these burned pineries with which this report is chiefly concerned.

AREAS SEVERELY BURNED ONCE

So far as could be ascertained, there are no places in the former pineries, outside of the swamps, that have not been burned at least once since lumbering. The stands designated as burned once evidently followed a severe fire. Patches which escaped the fires in the areas burned more than once are included in this group, either because they were originally established after a fire, or because they were burned once since establishment, as revealed by a fire scar.

The largest continuous area burned but once is found in the north-western corner of the township of Methuen. The best pine reproduction on lowland is found in the southern portion of the area, where the average stand is 94 white pine and 35 red pine per acre; of these 16 per cent of the white pine are from six inches to ten inches in diameter, while all of the red pine fall between the one-inch and six-inch diameter classes. The pine on the ridges is much less abundant, aver-aging only six trees per acre.

In the south-eastern portion of Burleigh township the best reproduction of pine was found, and it covers 365 acres, at the rate of 88 white pine and 173 red pine per acre, and single acres containing 350 trees could be picked out. On the average acre, 70 per cent of the trees belong to the one-inch and two-inch diameter classes, and the trees eight inches in diameter and above average only six to the acre. There is evidence that about 2,000 acres in this vicinity were once bearing young pine in similar quantities, but a fire about eight years ago cleared them off.

The other areas in Burleigh classed as burned but once, namely, the rather narrow strip east of Eels brook, in the north division, and west and south of the hardwoods, have good pine reproduction. Patches in these areas were burned 35 years ago, and other patches 16 years ago, but, as a whole, the areas were burned about 25 years ago.


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