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Sun sets on Indian Sandalwood

Sun sets on Indian sandalwood
6 August 2019

An Indian sandalwood study plot in Kununurra has been brought to a close with the final trees being harvested.

Technical Support Office Mike Cully said that Senior Timber Assessor Steve Davis had been harvesting the plots for the last several years.

“We’ve been up there multiple times in the last few years to harvest the trees, so it will be good to finally bring that chapter to a close,” Mr. Cully said.

The harvested logs had been debarked and were now being sent to Wescorp to be sold.

“It is likely that valuable fragrant oils will be extracted from the logs and used in the manufacture of perfumes and cosmetics,” Mr. Cully said.

The study plots had been used over the course of the last 25 years to generate a lot of information on Indian sandalwood for private plantation establishment.

The research plots helped develop Indian sandalwood growth, heartwood and oil yield models.

The information garnered from these plots was also important for giving people the confidence to invest in sandalwood plantations.

“We’d gotten all the knowledge we could from the plots, and with them reaching maturity it was the next step in the process,” Mr. Cully said.

“One thing I won’t miss is the green ants, a delicacy for the locals up there, but for us they were a nightmare as they fell from the tree while we were cutting, covering everything with a squirming layer of green ants.”