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Using spatially variable overstory retention to restore structural and compositional complexity in pine ecosystems

Author(s):

Robert Mitchell
Stephen Pecot

Year:

2005

Publication type:

Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Primary Station(s):

Northern Research Station

Historical Station(s):

North Central Research Station

Source:

In: Peterson, Charles E.; Maguire, Douglas A., eds. Balancing Ecosystem Values: Innovative Experiments for sustainable Forestry: Proceedings of a Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-635.Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 285-290

Description

Increasingly, forest managers incorporate overstory retention into silvicultural prescriptions for forests traditionally managed for single-cohort structure. The ecological benefits of retention may come at the cost of reduced growth of tree regeneration because of competition with residual trees. An important question in retention research, and its application, is how spatial pattern of retention (e.g., dispersed, aggregate) influences resource availability and heterogeneity, competitive environments, and regeneration dynamics. Recently, we initiated two operational-scale experiments in pine ecosystems (longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Miller) in southern Georgia, USA and red pine (Pinus resinosa Aiton) in northern Minnesota, USA) to address questions about the influence of retention pattern on resource availability and tree regeneration. These experiments address the hypothesis that resource availability at the stand scale will be highest with aggregate retention rather than dispersed retention because of nonlinear relationships between competitor abundance and target plant response. In both studies, our goal is to test approaches for restoring age diversity in single-cohort stands, while minimizing competitive inhibition of the new cohort. Our initial results show clearly that spatial pattern of retention has a significant effect on stand-scale resource availability and regeneration growth.

Citation

Palik, Brian J.; Kern, Christel C.; Mitchell, Robert; Pecot, Stephen. 2005. Using spatially variable overstory retention to restore structural and compositional complexity in pine ecosystems. In: Peterson, Charles E.; Maguire, Douglas A., eds. Balancing Ecosystem Values: Innovative Experiments for sustainable Forestry: Proceedings of a Gen. Tech. Rep. PNW-GTR-635.Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 285-290

Publication Notes

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https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/12313