If you look at a map of East Texas, you’re bound to see a theme emerge – Woodville, Pine Grove, Lumberton, Pineland, Evergreen, and Yellowpine. Texas has proud and rich legacy steeped in timber.
Less than 200 years ago, a vast longleaf pine forest covered over 90 million acres. It stretched from southeastern Virginia, southward into Florida and as far west as the Pineywoods of Texas. Today, less than 3.5 million acres remain and only 45,000 of those are in Texas. The pine stands stood tall at over 100 feet and grew to maturity of well over 500 years. This native species was all but clear-cut to the brink of extinction through deforestation practices of the 1800. However, thanks to conservation initiatives, education, and the sustainability of using green products such as reclaimed lumber, longleaf pine is proving itself to be heartier than ever.
Longleaf Forests Today: Conservation
Longleaf forests are the most ecologically diverse habitats outside of the tropics. Their habitats are characterized by three distinguishing features: towering, mature trees; an open canopy; and a forest bed dominated by woodland grasses with shrubs and woody plants. Wildlife thrives in longleaf forests and species range from the recreational to conservational. No matter the species that makes its home in these forests, it’s crucial to understand the value in protecting and preserving its natural habitat. Through a successful partnership of private landowners, conservation groups, and government agencies, the longleaf pine is making its resurgence.
Organizations like the Texas Longleaf Taskforce work tirelessly to educate landowners on successful conservation practices and restoration of functional longleaf ecosystems. In 2010, the Texas Longleaf Implementation Team was organized to “to promote the restoration of these historic Longleaf Pine ecosystems on private and public forestlands in Southeast Texas.”
Longleaf Pine: Revered for Its Quality
Longleaf produces something of an anomaly in comparison to other pines when it comes to its heart pine. Heart pine, or heartwood is the non-living, center of the tree that no longer carries nutrients from the soil upwards through the trunk. This rich, amber-colored wood has long been the choice material for home-building as well as furniture-making.
Over 100 years of slow air drying has perfected the heartwood pine qualities of stability, hardness, and beauty. Aging allows resin acids to crystallize which strengthens the wood and allows the wood to accept an oil finish in a unique way giving it a deep luster that cannot be duplicated.
Locating Longleaf Pine
Because longleaf pine is no longer harvested, procuring its heartwood can be a delicate and meticulous task. Most heartwood today is found in homes and buildings that no longer meet modern building codes. Antique Lumber Company specializes in locating these properties slated for demolition in North Central Texas and careful, painstaking deconstruction reclaims some of the finest historic wood for a new life in Texas’ most beautiful homes.
Antique Lumber Company invites you to shop the finest selection of antique longleaf pine in Texas. Our warehouse is located just an hour north of the DFW Metroplex with and we’ve recently added Saturday hours for your shopping convenience. When you’re looking to bring quality and history to your home or business’ construction project, look no further than longleaf pine and Antique Lumber Company!