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 The Cathedral Effect of a Raised Forest Canopy (Photos Below) can be configured and managed to provide multiple management + production advantages. This established forest was planted in the 1980’s. Original open woodland forest was cleared here for farming in the 1970’s. It then reverted to grasslands for grazing. These trees are now upwards of 20 to 30 metres tall.

NEW CATHEDRAL FOREST at Janahn Forest currently being planted and developed is dominated with Belah Trees on an 8 metre grid. See Photo 8 Below of 6 metre tall Belah with White Gums in far background 500 metres away. MULTIPLE USES of Cathedral Forest Constructs include Livestock Holding Paddocks + Market Gardens + Human Habitat + Tree Belts for any reason + more….          

 This is One Example of Forest Construction. To Follow other examples of Work in Progress at “Janahn Forest” GO TO: RESEARCH SECTION   where you will find multiple pages of relevant information including “Establishing New Forests with Grazing” + “Almanac of Trees” + “Best Tree Planting Method” + “Inland Rainforest with Bunya + Hoop + Belah”      


There are Two Great Advantages of a Cathedral Forest: (1) Cattle + Horses + Sheep + Marsupials are part of groundcover management (2) Provided groundcovers are maintained with grazing + the lateral branches of trees are removed from about 4 metres upwards = your forest will be “fire safe”. Some trees will tolerate ground cover fires better than others.  

During The Federation Drought of Circa 1900 bushfires in urban areas were almost non-existent as fuel loads were kept in check with goats + rabbits + livestock. Look at urban fires in Greece 2023 – go back 100 years ago most small towns had goats that kept vegetation in check. Co-incidentally most of Australia’s devastating bush fires are in urban areas where regrowth is rampant – especially on The Great Divide. Go Inland where it is typically hotter and bush fires are less frequent due to less fuel loads.           

cathedral forests

PHOTO 1: Chinchilla White Gums in background. Foreground is part of “Janahn Forest” East of Jimbour. Australia. Foreground Trees are Silky Oak planted about 1990. They are now 12 metres tall.  DATE of PHOTO: July 2023 

cathedral forests

PHOTO 2: Chinchilla White Gums at 7.00 am. On the Southside of The Forest you can see the shadow of the forest. By 9.00 am this shadow will be within the forest. These trees are mostly minimum 20 metres tall. Some are almost 30 metres. Tree planting density is based on rows 6 meters apart + trees 4 metres apart in rows. DATE of PHOTO: July 2023  NOTE: Grasses have re-established here under canopy – current dry period – below average rainfall since Sept ’22 – this forest was recently heavily grazed. See Photo 5 as typical of grass cover. 10 years ago grasses were actually non-existent due to previous overgrazing regime. SO IT is POSSIBLE to MAINTAIN Grass Free Forest Floors with Managed Grazing.     


PHOTO 3: Bare soil reveals soil type of pure sand up to 3 metres deep in parts. Beneath the sand lies yellow clay and eventually sandstone and shale rock. When this country was cleared it grew winter cereal crops for about 20 years. Soil fertility declines rapidly on light sandy soil verses heavy high water holding black soils that you will find only a few kilometres away on the extensive Condamine Flood Plain.  DATE of PHOTO:  July 2023


PHOTO 4: It is 7 am with early morning Sunlight penetrating the forest. By about 10 am the shade will move inside. DATE of PHOTO: July 2023. 

PHOTOS fail to convey the ambient atmosphere beneath the canopy of this Cathedral Forest.

Walk inside this forest during the heat of the day and you will appreciate its soothing effect.

You are standing underneath a block of filtered sunlight 20 metres tall. 

Photos from 2023. Less than 10 years ago grasses were non-existent under this forest. Grass density relies upon soil type and grazing frequency and rainfall. The main difference between these poorer sandy soils and heavy clay soils (besides water holding capacity) is “time between grazing”. Rest light soils longer to if you want to grow better grasslands.         

3 Top Hardy Trees for Cathedral Canopy Effect include Belah + Iron Bark. Silky Oak has potential as an interplanter with other compatible tree species as it is not suitable as a monoculture plantation.

Equal mix of Silky Oak + Belah on a 8 to 10 metre grid will work well according to soil type + rainfall.   

Bunya + Hoop Pine are part of Shaded Forest Grazing Paddock at “Janahn Forest”. See Belah + Bunya Below Photo 8.


PHOTO 5: Inside with early morning Sunlight. Once the shadow moves inside you actually have a block of atmosphere 20 metres tall made up of filtered sunlight which provides an enhanced cooling effect. This was heavily grazed a few months ago. DATE of PHOTO: July 2023


PHOTO 6:  Looking into canopy at 7.00 am you will find the shade effect up high. DATE of PHOTO: July 2023 


PHOTO 7: From within “Janahn Forest” original remnant forest on Sandstone Ridge. DATE of PHOTO: 2023 


PHOTO 8: Belah with lateral branches removed. Bunya Pine to right is 2.2 metres tall. Under ideal conditions Belah can grow to 6 metres within 9 years. DATE of PHOTO: July 2023  


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