CCFG Courses

Germany study tour
Continuous Cover Silviculture Study Tour to North Germany

31st March - 8th April 2009

Note: please scroll to bottom of page for downloads and detailed (preliminary) itinerary ...

(due to flight availability).


CCFG is supporting an International Study Tour to North Germany, focusing on the principles and practice of continuous cover silvicultural systems. The study tour is being organised by Dr. Arne Pommerening (Bangor University) and should be an excellent training and professional development opportunity for CCFG members, and others interested in continuous cover forestry. The study tour is based on a successful programme that has been running at Bangor University for a number of years. We have worked to maintain good standards of food and accommodation, and keep costs as low as possible, for all participants.

Programme details: Setting the scene

The tour is dedicated to the study of woodland management on an environmental basis as part of sustainable land use. Sustainable land use has received a major impetus since the United Nations Commission on Economic Development (UNCED) summit at Rio 15 years ago. The new definition states that forest resources and forest lands should be sustainably managed to meet the social, economic, ecological, cultural and spiritual needs of present and future generations (United Nations, 2001). Consequently alternative forms of woodland management have been introduced to the United Kingdom for which various terms have been coined such as continuous cover forestry and near-natural forestry. These alternative forms of woodland management have been practiced for generations in Germany. I have specifically selected North Germany as a study area because site conditions are similar to those found in Britain. This and the fact that alternative management practices were only introduced 10-20 years ago allows a detailed study of growth and ecological processes involved whilst providing a vision and demonstrating techniques that can be taken home.

German foresters welcoming the group with a horn call. © 2007 A. Pommerening

The tour programme will include:

  • the management of mixed and uneven-aged stands along the German North sea coast in a particularly windy climate, afforestation of former agricultural land with mixed broadleaves/conifers (Schleswig-Holstein),
  • regeneration of mixed stands on poor sandy soils under a first generation Scots pine canopy, underplanting of oak and beech under Scots pine canopy, management of valuable Douglas fir woodlands (Lower Saxony: Lüneburg Heathlands),
  • the management of mixed ash-sycamore-beech, Norway spruce-beech and oak-beech woodlands (Lower Saxony: Göttinger Wald, Solling, Harz mountains),
  • grazing experiments, restoration of ancient wood pastures, wildlife management involving the re-introduction of the lynx,
  • restoration of ancient woodland sites,
  • half a day of lectures on the topics of the tour by specialists from the University of Göttingen,
  • practical information on individual tree silviculture including tree marking for thinnings and the frame tree method; training in silvicultural systems,
  • identification and discussion of soils and ground vegetation,
  • identification of trees and vascular plants, the role of indicator species.

The study tour will be co-organised and hosted by the Forestry Services of Lower Saxony and Schleswig-Holstein, the University of Göttingen and the directors of the Forestry Research Stations of Lower Saxony.

Map of Germany with Study Tour locations. © 2009 CCFG


  • £400 for full-time students
  • £550 for CCFG Members (individual and corporate members)
  • £600 for other participants.
  • Price includes transport, accommodation, breakfast and tuition.

Please Note:

  • Places are limited. First come first served.
  • A specific website page will provide detailed information on the tour as planning goes ahead.
  • Dates may be subject to slight changes by 1 or 2 days, depending on flight availability.

Interested? For more information please contact:

Due to overwhelming interest in this project, bookings are now closed. If you would like to be added to a reserve list of participants, please contact the tour organiser: Dr Arne Pommerening, Bangor University, Arne Pommerening


File: File Type: Size: Link:
Study Tour Flyer (English Version) PDF [12KB] link
Study Tour Flyer (Welsh Version) PDF [14KB] link
Map of Germany with main locations to be visited: PDF [533KB] link
Preliminary Programme (UPDATE: 17/11/08) PDF [10KB] link
Example Tour Report 1 PDF [1.28MB] link
Example Tour Report 2 PDF [1.29MB] link

A broadleaf stand prepared for a tree marking exercise. © 2007 A. Pommerening