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Interaction of Trembling Aspen and Lodgepole Pine in a Young Sub-Boreal Mixedwood Stand in Central British Columbia

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DOI: 10.4236/ojf.2015.52013    2,564 Downloads   2,891 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Strategies for managing mixed broadleaf-conifer stands in British Columbia (BC) have been under review in recent years as the benefits of mixedwood management have been recognized. More has been learned about the role of broadleaves in forest ecosystems however ecosystem-specific knowledge about the competitive interactions between mixed broadleaf-conifer stands is still scarce. Therefore a competitive interactions study was conducted to facilitate ecosystem-specific management for lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Dougl. Ex Loud. Var. latifolia Engelm.) and trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) in the sub-boreal spruce (SBS) zone of central BC. The experiment was a completely randomized block design with six different aspen densities replicated three times. Each replicate was sampled three times between ages 14 to 19 years. Pine diameter and height growth were influenced by aspen density. Our current quantitative findings suggest that lodgepole pine growth was not impacted when growing with aspen densities up to 2500 stems ha-1. Considering free growing (FTG) and not free growing (NFTG) pine at the time of trial establishment, an insignificant difference was found for DBH, height and crown volume responses. Leaf area index (LAI) and diffuse non-interceptance (DIFN) radiation were also not significantly different between FTG or NFTG trees suggesting our results exceed the current BC’s free growing standard. Further work is recommended to determine whether or not the current free growing standards are appropriate for producing the desired crop outcome.

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Dhar, A. , Wang, J. and Hawkins, C. (2015) Interaction of Trembling Aspen and Lodgepole Pine in a Young Sub-Boreal Mixedwood Stand in Central British Columbia. Open Journal of Forestry, 5, 129-138. doi: 10.4236/ojf.2015.52013.

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