Investing in Conservation

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Forum topic by jpw1995 posted 02-19-2007 11:55 PM 1529 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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376 posts in 4536 days

02-19-2007 11:55 PM

I was checking out some of those internet lumber sites earlier today when I stumbled across the following website:

You can check it out for yourselves, but the basic concept is that you put up the cash for the seedlings, they plant, maintain, and harvest them, and you walk away with a profit while helping take some of the pressure off of the natural tropical rainforests that these trees are currently being harvested from. They charge a fee for the maintainance and harvesting, of course, but you still walk away with money in your pocket… theory. The website is very informative, and it details every aspect of the process as well as providing some projections based on growing 100 Teak trees and harvesting them over a 25 year period.

I sure don’t have that kind of money to invest, but I do think it’s an interesting concept. I just wanted to see what everbody else thought about it.

-- JP, Louisville, KY

13 replies so far

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 4414 days

#1 posted 02-20-2007 01:55 AM

Mmmm – 25 years – I’ll be in God’s heavenly garden.

Interesting – there are literally hundreds of similar investment ‘opportunities’ here in Australia. Some may be legitimate but others are definitely shonky. The proposition is dependent upon a lot of suppositions. One thing is for sure – the promoters won’t lose anything.

Put me in the skeptical column.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View MsDebbieP's profile


18618 posts in 4398 days

#2 posted 02-20-2007 02:39 AM

some brilliant salesmanship based on people’ desire to help conserve our forests.

I’m not one for risk-taking but I am a supporter of the environment. Pros/cons? I’ll leave that up to more knowledgable experts.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View oscorner's profile


4563 posts in 4548 days

#3 posted 02-21-2007 04:01 PM

Well, they say that trees are planted for future generations and with twenty-five years are more for maturity, then it definitely rings true for most of us. Another way to conserve is not to purchase wood of trees that are endangered, recycling wood from barns, old houses, etc. and old pallets even. In this day and age we all must watch out for the scam artist.

-- Jesus is Lord!

View Bill's profile


2579 posts in 4399 days

#4 posted 03-17-2007 07:33 PM

I am just wondering if you did some further research JP, and was this legitimate?

-- Bill, Turlock California,

View cronk's profile


33 posts in 4359 days

#5 posted 03-18-2007 02:45 AM

jpw I have been a professional forester for 55 years and have wandered around quite a bit dealing with timber and timber land. and while this may be a legitimate deal -( you can also buy walnut “futures” and other types of wood futures) I’m in the same camp as Don – someone is making a profit and it isn’t necessarily you. My feeling is that if it makes you feel warm and fuzzy have at it. It makes more sense to me to promote sound, ethical, proven forest management practices on forest land whose highest and best use is the growing of trees for commercial production. I find the “locking up” of our forest resources and allowing wildfire, insect, disease to ravage our forest without any commitment of use of these resources a “crime against humanity” when so many people are in need.
todays private forest managers are sound dedicated conservationists in the true sense – not just by name as your typical “greeny” who hardly know what end of the tree should be stuck in the ground. – you may have found my “soapbox”.

-- cronk, oregon

View schroeder's profile


702 posts in 4363 days

#6 posted 03-18-2007 04:11 AM

Go Cronk Go! – you da man!

-- The Gnarly Wood Shoppe

View Paul's profile


660 posts in 4330 days

#7 posted 03-18-2007 04:47 AM

Cronk -

Wow! 55 years . . . thanks for your service!

I’ve either been blessed or cursed with the desire and ability to see truth on both sides of most “discussions.” Most folks see that as “wishy-washy.” I hope it’s humble and balanced and willing to listen without pre-judgment! I’m curious about your phrase “locking up” our forest resources. Is there, in your opinion, ever a time where it is appropriate to “set aside” resources – even when perhaps a job may cease to exist? For example, it’s my understanding that some animal and plant species simply cannot co-exist with commercial production. In one such discussion over an “old growth” tract a few years ago somewhere, I think I heard the “greeny” argue that at the present rate of logging, the job would be gone in a year anyway – so why not save this last little bit and protect a species that would be driven to extinction? So related, is there ever a time where “the highest and best use” is not the growing of trees for commercial production? Some would argue that since all creation is intertwined in the ecological web, that each loss of a plant or animal species is a “crime against humanity”, too – maybe not in the short term, but in the long-term.

“So many people in need” – are you referring to the loss of jobs? or more?

You are certainly closer to all this than I am in the Mesquite tree filled area of Texas that I am, so I really do want to understand and learn from your experience. I had the wonderful experience of visiting Oregon and the Northwest in 05 for the first time in my life and my reaction was, “I always want this to be here!” Yet, I don’t want to be your “typical ‘greeny’” in name only. I resonate with oscorner above about reusing found wood. I try to do that as much as possible.

At a work-related seminar I attended today, a stranger across the lunch table from me mentioned the “over-hype” of global warming and how we’re simply in the midst of a natural warming cycle that’s happened before. I inquired about how he believed so many thousands of leading scientists all over the world were wrong. And that I understood that few scientists would not agree that warming cycles have happened before, but it was the rate of the warming that was alarming, and that pointed to human influence. When something happens over a 75 year period which happened before over a 500 year period, it points to something alarming. Well, the discussion ended quickly because I sensed he believed me to be a tree hugging “kook” and not someone who genuinely wanted to listen. I do want to listen.

Maybe an informational web-site suggestion would be the easiest response?

-- Paul, Kentucky

View BassBully's profile


261 posts in 4334 days

#8 posted 03-18-2007 06:54 AM

I don’t know the investment costs you’d be facing with this type of opportunity but it may be a better opportunity for you to purchase land and plant seedlings yourself. Obviously you’d be restricted to trees that would prosper the most in the climate regions where the land resides.

I knew a guy in Northern Iowa that purchased 50 acres of land and he planted oak seeds over most of his land. He claimed that after 20 something years, he could have the trees harvested and make millions just in time for him to retire. It’s really a safe investment because even if he didn’t harvest the trees, he could still earn money off the land alone.

-- There are three types of people in the world, those who can count and those who can't!

View Bill's profile


2579 posts in 4399 days

#9 posted 03-18-2007 06:59 AM

A good thing as long as you can afford the land. In California, the land is more valuable than gold. The prices here are amazing.

-- Bill, Turlock California,

View MsDebbieP's profile


18618 posts in 4398 days

#10 posted 03-18-2007 01:25 PM

I have a friend here in Ontario that owns two acres of land out on the east coast. She hasn’t been to the east coast in over 20 years but she still has land there – and trees.
and in case you are considering buying land in another area of the world, here is a tip.
She was called by someone a few years ago and was told that the trees in the area were being invaded by some bug and that he would go in and clear up the trees so that the invasion didn’t get worse. Pretty kind offer and a way to protect the environment.
She called a Ministry of Natural Resources person and for a minimal fee he went and checked out her trees—no invasion. Seems the “thoughtful” man was pulling a scam and getting permission to get some free trees!! The Ministry guy kindly offered to check on her trees whenever he was in the area to make sure that they weren’t secretly being cut down.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Bill's profile


2579 posts in 4399 days

#11 posted 03-18-2007 07:13 PM

A good outcome Debbie. It is nice to hear someone in government actually volunteering to do something and going beyond their normal job. Bravo.

-- Bill, Turlock California,

View MsDebbieP's profile


18618 posts in 4398 days

#12 posted 03-18-2007 08:16 PM

That’s what I said, Bill.

then my friend said that the Ministry guy was a senior and would soon be retiring. AH! Old School! Honour. Neighbourliness..

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View Bob Babcock's profile

Bob Babcock

1809 posts in 4324 days

#13 posted 05-02-2007 11:25 PM

I’m in the skeptic column too… and I’m also going to start using the word “schonky” too…I like it Don.

I bought our home 25 years ago with a few extra acres with the idea of planting our treefarm. The idea was to help raise money for our kids college eductaion and just as importantly to teach them the value of hard work. We’ve made a few dollars and it has been great fun and both my girls have a love for growing things now.

I’ve been working with Lyptus wood recently, in-part because of the eco-friendly forestry practices the grower promotes.(although Don and Debbie found references to questionable practices by the company) One thing we all need to do as consumers is to try and promote reasonable practices by all. Not just in wood but everything.

-- Bob

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