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Forest PlantationsAuthor(s): D. Zhang; J.A. Stanturf
Source: Encyclopedia of Ecology, 5 vols. pp. 1673-1680.
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
Station: Southern Research Station
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Between the extremes of afforestation and unaided natural
regeneration of natural forests, there is a range of
forest conditions in which human intervention occurs.
Previously, forest plantations were defined as those
forest stands established by planting and/or seeding in
the process of afforestation or reforestation. Within plantations,
there is a gradient in conditions. At one extreme
is the traditional forest plantation concept of a single
introduced or indigenous species, planted at uniform
density and managed as a single age class (the so-called
monoculture). At the other extreme is the planted or
seeded mixture of native species, managed for nonconsumptive
uses such as biodiversity enhancement. To
further complicate matters, many forests established as
plantations come to be regarded as secondary or seminatural
forests and no longer are classed as plantations. For
example, European forests have long traditions of human
intervention in site preparation, tree establishment, silviculture,
and protection; yet they are not always defined as
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CitationZhang, D.; Stanturf, J.A. 2008. Forest Plantations. In Sven Erik Jørgensen and Brian D. Fath (Editors-in-Chief), Ecosystems. Vol.  of Encyclopedia of Ecology, 5 vols. pp. 1673-1680. Oxford: Elsevier.
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