is the science
and practice of studying and managing forests
and their natural resources
. Much research and development has been invested in improving varieties of trees for commercial use and in better methods of planting, pest control, thinning, felling, and extraction and of processing timber
into usable products. In most countries the timber industry
is of major economic
importance. The science of managing forests for its many uses is called silviculture
Growing concerns about environmental problems arising from massive deforestation (especially in the rain forests) have recently put forestry and its implications into the spotlight.