Located a short 30-minute drive from Dothan in Houston County, Alabama, the 451-acre Garner Farm is an excellent timberland property that possesses characteristics desired by institutional investors. Yet, due to its size, this asset is within the reach of individuals who want to diversify their portfolio and/or create an inflation hedge. With cultivated farms dominating this southeast corner of Alabama and the adjoining Florida lands to the south, Garner Farm offers an excellent conversion opportunity. Having an abundance of agricultural neighbors also makes it very compelling as a recreational tract.
One of the most highly coveted traits of a timberland tract is a high percentage of plantable acreage and they are difficult to find. Garner Farm has an extraordinarily high plantable area of 95% which considerably enhances its economics. From a revenue perspective, there is merchantable timber that can be monetized immediately and an easy pathway exists for generating smooth cash flows due to seven different planting years that range from 2001 to 2016. Furthermore, heavy rains can create supply problems at mills which require them to focus on identifying wet weather sites. Garner Farm’s soils, predominately Troup-Lucy and Troup-Bonifay, have upland qualities that are well-suited for these conditions. From a landowner’s vantage point, the resulting unbalanced supply and demand often brings premium prices.
A 53-acre field in the northeast part of the property is leased out for peanut and cotton production which prompts consideration of several options. Those include keeping the current arrangement, planting this area in pines, or converting some or all of the remaining 380 acres to crop land (no CRP program is in place). If desired, the property lays out well for pivots which would significantly open up the number of crops that could be grown. Importantly, the Florida aquifer, one of the world’s most productive aquifers, is reached in less than 100’ and no water use permit is required. A test well and well dug by the State of Alabama are already in place.
From a recreational standpoint, Garner Farm benefits from being located in an area with a high concentration of cultivated farms. Additionally, across the Florida state line lies the 7,952-acre Apalachee Wildlife Management Area known for its deer, waterfowl, quail, and turkey. If fishing is your passion, there are several nearby public boat landings along the Chattahoochee River that feed into Lake Seminole, a 37,500-acre water body nationally renowned for its largemouth bass, wide variety of plant and animal life, and bird watching.
With 1 ½ miles of paved road frontage on Alabama State Highway 95 and County Road 8 along with a good internal road system, Garner Farm is very accessible.