Prediction of Scots pine increment using a multivariate variance component model
Diameter and volume increment as well as change in stem form of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) were analysed to predict tree increment variables. A stem curve set model is presented, based on prediction of the diameters at fixed angles in a polar coordinate system. This model consists of three elementary stem curves: 1) with bark, 2) without bark, and 3) without bark five years earlier. The differences between the elementary stem curves are the bark curve and the increment curve. The error variances at fixed angles and covariances between the fixed angles are divided into between-stand and within-stand components. Using principal components, the between-stand and within-stand covariance matrices are condensed separately for stem curve with bark, bark curve and increment curve. The two first principal components of the bark curve describe the vertical change in Scots pine bark type and the first principal component of the increment curve describes the increment rate. The elementary stem curves, bark curve and increment curve as well as corresponding stem volumes, bark volume and volume increment can be predicted for all trees in the stand with free choice of sample tree measurements. When only a few sample trees are measured, the stem curve set model gives significantly more accurate predictions of bark volume and volume increment for tally trees than does the volume method, which is based on the differences between two independent predictions of volume. The volume increment of tally trees can be predicted as reliably with as without measurement of sample tree height increment.
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Published in 1993