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#83887 10/20/02 12:11 PM
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I had never heard or seen this word before last night - I was reading about my latest object of obsession (elephants), and I ran across this passage:

In reply to:

...the small, gnarled trees coppice when laid on their sides, turning branches that touch the earth into new sets of roots.


Silent Thunder, Katharine Payne


Atomica claims it's something different: A thicket or grove of small trees or shrubs, especially one maintained by periodic cutting or pruning to encourage suckering, as in the cultivation of cinnamon trees for their bark.
See also: copse. [Well, that makes sense...]


http://m-w.com seems to recognize it as a verb, but not exactly in the way she's used it above:
transitive senses : to cut back so as to regrow in the form of a coppice
intransitive senses : to form a coppice; specifically of a tree : to sprout freely from the base


SO - can someone find a citation that substantiates her use of the word? Have I been living under a rock that I've never heard it before? Has anyone seen trees do this? Can I have a nickel?


#83888 10/20/02 12:38 PM
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Hi, FB

Yes, I've seen trees do this many a time. And naturally. In fact, it happens to trees that fall after storms or high winds and many new trees will come up eventually around the fallen one.

However, I've never seen the verb "coppice," although I've seen and recognized the noun form and had just assumed it meant a copse, so it's pretty exciting for me--a great tree lover--to now have a verb for what I've seen many times in nature.

I saw once a red mulberry tree that someone had cut back to get rid of it, and the next season dozens of young mulberries came up from the cut-off trunk. That's a little different in application in that the tree was entirely cut back, so I'm not sure whether your coppice verb would apply. However, I'll check my tree references and see whether I can find some quotes for you.

Thanks very much for the verb.


#83889 10/20/02 01:13 PM
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Almost forty years ago I read about the then richest man in the world named
Daniel Keith Ludwig getting conttrol of a huge tract of land near the Amazon, having
a papermill built in Japan on a huge barge and transported across the Pacific Ocean
and up the Amazon river. He had a forestry expert who had selected a couple of rapid
growing trees that by coppice management could yield a sustained yield of
wood for paper making;. The coppice management meant that the tree could be cut
close to the ground, but would not be killed, and in a short time would bebig enough to be
harvested again. Other experts predicted that such "monoculture" would invite disease to
wipe out the whole project as gad previously happened to large plantings of rubber trees.
Apparently the project failed, and the land reverted to the Brazilian government. But I
never found any magazine stories about it.
Elsewhere in ancient times coppice referred to maintaining a sustained yield of
firewood by cutting branches off trees rather than cutting the trunk. The word also refers
to a place where the trees are not tall.
One sad thing about the Internet is that sites get removed, so that it is now impossible
to find anything about Daniel Keith Ludwig on the Internet.


#83890 10/20/02 01:20 PM
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Well, we've sure discussed "polling" of trees before here, but now I'm wondering what the difference might be between polling a tree and coppicing it...???


#83891 10/20/02 01:35 PM
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Hallelueia! I found a site about Daniel Keith Ludwig that was not there a year ago.
http://www.pir.org/main1/Daniel_Keith_Ludwig.html
Now I've got to go look at it to see if I can find out what happened to the paper
business.


#83892 10/20/02 05:15 PM
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copse - 1578, contraction of coppice, from O.Fr. coupeiz "a
cut-over forest," from V.L. *colpare "to cut, strike," from
L.L. colpus "a blow" (see coup).


#83893 10/21/02 02:34 PM
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You find coppice in a polis station.



The idiot also known as Capfka ...
#83894 10/21/02 03:15 PM
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And a gay male is non colpos mentis.


#83895 10/21/02 10:36 PM
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> You find coppice in a polis station. <

CK, I really enjoyed your twist. Your mind thinks similarly to mine. Be afraid ... be VERY afraid. :)




#83896 10/22/02 07:04 AM
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S'okay. You appear to be in British Columbia. I'm just in British. Takes more than that to scare me!



The idiot also known as Capfka ...
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