Let us discover a local, environmentally-friendly and renewable resource: The Piedmontese CHESTNUT wood..

Our Chestnut

Chestnut  (Castanea sativa) is a  species of deciduous tree, typical of Southern Europe, that can also be found in North Africa and Asia Minor. Chestnut groves in Italy cover about 788.000 ha, i.e. 9% of the woodland at a national level. Piedmont is the Italian region with the largest amount of chestnut wood: almost 170.000 ha, i.e. 21% of all Italian chestnut groves. Chestnut is not thought to be a native tree and originally it was not so widespread:   it was largely imported and then grown in the Alpine valleys already at the time of the Romans. This tree has always been a vital element in the life of the mountain populations who, up until just a few years ago, used it both for the qualities of its fruits, which were ground for flour, and for its timber..

Why is it so important that we enhance the value of this tree?

Chestnut, which, as we have seen, is quite widespread all along the Piedmontese region, is used today mostly in the wood-energy chain (firewood and wood chips for fireplaces, stoves and biomass boilers) and for the tanning of raw hides and skins.
These interesting market sectors could be integrated by other  productions, thus increasing the value added and, therefore, enhancing the value of the woods. This would be economically advantageous both for those who manage and use the woods and for those who manufacture the products at the end of the chain. Chestnut wood is, in fact, perfect for valuable productions, such as floors, home furniture,  furniture for public gardens and parks, vineyard wooden stakes and trusses, just to mention a few of them. Ensuring access to the market for the local timber is of paramount importance for the protection of the environment. The depopulation of the rural and mountain areas has had a negative impact on the safeguard of the environment and  has led to serious hydro-geological instability further downstream too.    Furthermore, the use of local timber would  help setting the greenhouse-gas emission levels in the area and reduce  energy- and environmental-costs related to the timber transport from other areas (information taken from www.rivistasherwood.it).

information taken from: www.rivistasherwood.it

Timber characteristics and possible uses

Chestnut is highly appreciated because it has a marked resistance to natural deterioration and dampness. Thanks to its high technological characteristics, its pleasant aspect and durability, it is considered the most versatile of the Italian tree species. It is especially appreciated as a construction material: trusses, girders and wooden floors. Its exquisite wood grains provide a warm, welcoming and rustic feeling. Its marked resistance to natural deterioration and humidity make it the best choice also for outdoor furniture: flower boxes, benches, tables, pergolas, gazebos, baskets, notice-boards, ecological areas and fences. Its perfect rooting, its elasticity and resistance to accidental impacts, make it the ideal material for the production of barked poles, which are widely used in the building industry, naturalistic engineering, vineyards and fruit-growing.

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