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Wood density of young-growth western hemlock: relation to ring age, radial growth, stand density, and site quality.Author(s): Dean S. DeBell; Ryan Singleton; Barbara L. Gartner; David D. Marshall
Source: Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 34: 2433-2442
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
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DescriptionBreast-high stem sections were sampled from 56 western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla (Raf.) Sarg.) trees growing in 15 plots representing a wide range of tree and site conditions in northwestern Oregon. Growth and wood density traits of individual rings were measured via X-ray densitometry, and relationships of ring density and its components to age and growth rate were analyzed. Ring density was highest (0.49 g/cm3) near the pith, declined to 0.40 g/cm3 at age 10, remained stable to about age 25, and then increased gradually and remained between 0.43 and 0.44 g/cm3 from age 38 to 45 and beyond. A negative influence of rapid growth on whole ring density was greatest at young ages and diminished with time, becoming nonsignificant beyond age 30. Earlywood density, latewood density, and latewood proportion were all negatively related to ring width at young ages. but by age 21-25, latewood proportion was the only component of ring density that remained significantly diminished by increased growth rate. Residual differences in wood density (after age and growth rate were considered) did not appear to be related to either stand densTty or site class. Overall, young-growth hemlock trees are relatively uniform in wood density and likely to be more so if grown in intensively managed stands.
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CitationDeBell, Dean S.; Singleton, Ryan; Gartner, Barbara L.; Marshall, David D. 2004. Wood density of young-growth western hemlock: relation to ring age, radial growth, stand density, and site quality. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 34: 2433-2442
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