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The original ' pine forests, of the southern states covered from 125 to 130 million acres of land, about two-thirds of which was Longleaf pine. Four-fifths of this area had been cut over by 1920, leaving about 230 million acres, one-half of which is Longleaf pine. Of the cut-over lands, 31 million acres have not restocked. The Longleaf pine has thus been the principal tree crop on about 85 million acres of land, of which 11% million acres remained' in 1920, giving a cut-over area of nearly 73 million acres, or 114,062 square miles. This area is nearly half the size of the National Forests and the potential annual yield will probably equal, if not exceed, the total possible growth on all the National Forests in the United States proper. It is now generally conceded in the South that the greater portion of this area is not adapted to agricultural use. If permitted to remain unproductive, this area, equivalent to 33 per cent of eight southern states, is a permanent menace to the prosperity of the region.


The investigation, results of which are described here, was made possible by the foresight and practical business sense of Henry E. Hardtner, who fenced this area in 1914 and has since protected it from fire, for the purpose of demonstrating the possibility of commercial reforestation from natural seeding, and who, since 1917, has cooperated with the Yale School of Forestry in affording an opportunity to conduct the field work of the spring term upon the holdings of the Urania Lumber Company in LaSalle Parish, Louisiana.

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