Properly treated roundwood posts and poles are the preferred choice of the agricultural industry for fencing and other ranch and farm projects.
These materials are also popular for ranchette perimeter fencing, and are frequently specified by highway and park departments.
Preservative-treated posts and poles are strong, attractive, easy to install and feature a long service life. Properly treated wood is safe for the environment and utilizes sustainable, renewable resources to meet many agricultural and fencing needs.
Roundwood posts and poles are made from Aspen, Ponderosa Pine, Lodgepole Pine and Douglas fir timber. They are often manufactured from timber that is too small to cut into lumber products.
The benefits of preserved wood posts and poles include:
- Long service life reduces costs - Preservative treating can extend the life of a lodgepole pine pole to nearly 40 year vs. 4-12 years for an untreated pole. The significant reduces the cost of materials, installation and replacement labor.
- Superior strength - Roundwood posts provide a higher strength-to-weight ratio compared to iron or steel. A 2-1/2-inch wood post can withstand a force of 400 lbs. or more applied 48 inches above the ground line, while steel posts will fail at 300 lbs.
- Easy to install - Quality roundwood posts are straight, have minimal taper and are easy to use. They can be installed using a tractor-mounted post pounder or auger.
- Holds well in soil - Preserved wood posts and poles stay in the ground better because more surface area is in contact with the surrounding soil. In even slightly sandy soil, steel posts become unstable while properly installed wood posts stay solid in the ground.
- Natural beauty - The warm colors and wood grain of wood posts and poles provide a natural look in the landscape, blending seamlessly with their surroundings.
Post and pole publications, studies
Information about preserved wood post and poles is available from the Intermountain Roundwood Association. Other materials are available from WWPI, including:
Over the past 20 years, a number of studies on the production and markets for preservative-treated wood posts and poles have been conducted, in cooperation with the U.S. Forest Service, the University of Montana, Montana Commerce Department and Western Wood Preservers Institute. The following reports are available:
- Post and Pole Survey Report - 2023, 28 pages, 10/23
- Western U.S. Roundwood Industry - 2019, 28 pages, 01/20
- Presentation - Western U.S. Roundwood Industry - 2019, 37 pages, 03/20
- Post and Pole Government Buyer Survey, 18 pages, 03/04
- Characterization of Western U.S. Post-and-Pole Industry - 2002, 41 pages, 12/02
- Imports of Roundwood Posts from Canada, 15 pages, 03/02
- Treated Wood Post Awareness Campaign, 19 pages, 03/02