Professor researches design values of invasive juniper trees


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CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon State University professor is looking to expand demand for juniper wood, an invasive yet native species that's expensive to process and that builders know little about.

The Capital Press reports (http://bit.ly/1PqOHI1) the USDA grant-funded research seeks uses for a tree that poses a threat to greater sage grouse and rangeland health in the northwest.

OSU's Wood Innovation Center director Scott Leavengood is leading the research so juniper can be included in the West Coast Lumber Inspection Bureau's booklet of wood design values, a reference tool for builders.

Leavengood says juniper is best suited for sign posts and guardrails that require minimal processing. The wood naturally resists rot, and could be ideal for high-end cabinets as well.

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Information from: Capital Press, http://www.capitalpress.com/washington

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