Laipanmaa’s forests are in industrial use
Laipanmaa is somewhat different than most hiking areas in the sense that its forests are used not only for recreation, but also commercially for lumber industry use. Most of the area’s forests are own by private people and the municipalities of Pälkäne and Kangasala. In an industrial forest the work of man can be seen in maintenance and logging or forest areas. This is done so that the forests would grow in a profitable manner. Forests are cleared and trees are removed so that the remaining ones can grow to be highest-quality lumber.
Modern forestry does its best to take into account the diversity of the forest. Starting from the sapling phase thickets are saved in order to offer the animals hiding places. At the final logging so called savings trees are left to stand and eventually rot, creating rotting wood in industrial forests – something many rare species need to survive. Of course, rotten wood is more common in natural forests. It is very important for the diversity of any forest, as many animals depend on it for shelter and food. Nowadays the forest owner can also choose how to take care of his forest. So called continuous growing enables the terrain to be covered with forest at all times.
When hiking in Laipanmaa it is therefore important to remember that you are on private grounds, using the Finnish freedom to roam. You can hike, pick berries or mushrooms. The scenery might change due to logging or maintenance, but that’s how the cycle goes. You need to follow any advice or warning signs along the trails at all times. The Nature Path is a great route to learn more about foresrtry and how life in Laipanmaa was back in the day, as there are several informational posts along the route.
Nature offers us so many valuable ecosystemic services, and wood production is commercially the most significant one. Other services include berries and mushrooms, but also regulating or cultural services such as binding CO2, evening out floods and recreation, education and mental well-being.