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    Description

    Stand dynamics and tree growth in even-aged hardwood stands can be influenced by manipulating relative stand density, species composition, and stand structure. Land managers need quantitative information on the effect of vegetation manipulation to prescribe stand treatments that are appropriate for specific management objectives. Sixty-year-old stands composed of black cherry (Prunus serotina Ehrh.), red maple (Acer rubrum L.), sugar maple (Acer saccharum Marsh.), and American beech (Fagus grandifolia Ehrh.) were thinned to 45, 60, and 75% relative density as measured by the stocking guide for Allegheny hardwoods. Stand age, aspect, elevation, and soil-site conditions were uniform among the study plots, while relative density and to a lesser degree stand structure were altered by the thinning treatments. Regression analyses were used to relate stand dynamics and tree diameter growth over a 10-year period to changes in relative density, stand structure, and species composition. Stand growth is reported in basal area, cubic volume, sawtimber volume, and relative density growth, and individual tree response is reported in terms of diameter growth by species group. Study results generally support current recommendations for thinning Allegheny hardwoods for wood volume production, though stands with relatively high proportions of black cherry may respond better to densities greater than recommended levels for optimal sawtimber volume production. These results also may be useful for interpreting overall stand dynamics and developing prescriptions to enhance production of other woodland benefits.

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    Citation

    Miller, Gary W. 1997. Stand dynamics in 60-year-old Allegheny hardwoods after thinning. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 27: 1645-1657.

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