Current issue: 55(2)
Snow damage to forests in Southern Finland in November 1991 was examined in relation to meteorological conditions. The combined effect of different factors proved to be necessary for severe damage. First, the snow load, in terms of precipitation, should exceed a certain limit. The limit can be set for weak or moderate damage at about 40 mm and for very severe damage at about 60 mm. Second, temperature at the time of precipitation should be above 0°C, which enables the slightly wet snow to attach to twigs during the subsequent period with temperature below 0°C. On the other hand, temperatures exceeding 0.6°C prohibit damage by permitting the snow load to fall from the branches. Wind speed exceeding 9 ms-1, as observed 15 m above ground, were strong enough to dislodge the snow which is not attached, and thus reduce the damage. There are few statistics either of snow damage or of the relation between the snow damage and precipitation. However, there is causal connection between snow damage and heavy snowfalls. Therefore, the regions with a high frequency of heavy snowfalls, as indicated by orographical features and occurrence of thick snow cover, were investigated.
For biomass forestry in the inland parts of Southern and Central Finland, the obvious choice of willow species is Salix myrsinifolia. However, selection of clones of indigenous species has not yet been completed and more research and selection is needed. In the Piipsanneva old peatland trial, indigenous species of willow, mostly clones of S. myrsinifolia and S. phylicifolia, were compared in terms of biomass production, coppicing, height growth and diameter distributions. In this trial, the mean annual biomass production was not particularly high; more important results were attained in the ranking of clones. The trial strengthens the hypothesis that, over the long-term, the biomass production of S. myrsinifolia is higher than that of S. phylicifolia. It was supposed that behind the highest yield there was a clone with uniform quality, one whose diameter distribution would be narrow and positively skewed. Comparisons of parameters of Weibull functions showed that the distributions of the best clones were wide, indicating that those clones use the whole growth space better than those with narrow distribution.
Growth and nutrition of 20 clones representing different species and interspecific hybrids of willows (Salix spp.) growing on an abandoned field were studied. There were highly significant differences between the clones as regards the survival, number of sprouts per stool, sprout mean height and diameter and stem biomass production per stool. The differences between the clones in the concentration of all nutrients in both the leaves and stems were highly significant.
The aim of the study was to obtain information needed in preparing more precise fertilization recommendations for seed orchards. The fertilization requirement was estimated on basis of soil and needle analyses, and by investigating the effects of different fertilization treatments on male and female flowering, size of seed crop and seed quality.
The study was carried out in two Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seed orchards in Southern Finland, one established on forest soil in 1971 and 1972, and the other on a peat field in 1974. 10 clones and 39 grafts from each clone were selected randomly from both orchards in autumn 1985. The treatments consisted of N, P and K in various combinations, micronutrients, wood ash and grass control. The orchards were fertilized in spring 1986.
There were statistically significant differences between the clones in both orchards as regards amount of flowers, size of the seed crop and seed quality. The annual variation in flowering and the size of the seed crop was also large. In general, the seeds from cones collected in October matured well and their germination percentage was high. The effects of fertilization on flowering, the size of seed crop and seed quality were small. It would appear that the size of the crop can be affected to a much greater extent by favouring clones with a high seed-producing capacity than through fertilization. Fertilization is unnecessary if the nutrient status of the soil is satisfactory.
Change in dry matter partitioning, 14C-incorporation, and sink 14C-activity of 1.5-year-old Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seedlings grown in growth chamber conditions were studied during a 91-day experiment. On five sampling dates, seedlings were labelled with 14CO2 and whole-plant allocation patterns were determined. Intensively growing shoots modified the dry matter partitioning: during shoot growth the proportion of roots decreased but after that it increased. Based on their large proportion of dry matter, the needles (excluding current needles) were the strongest sink of carbon containing 40% of the incorporated 14C. Despite their small initial sink size, the elongating shoots (current main shoot + current branch) and their needles were the second strongest sink (30–40% of the total 14C) which reflects their high physiological activity. The proportion of 14C in the current year’s main shoot increased during shoot growth but decreased as the growth began to decline after 70 days. 10–20% of the total assimilated 14C was translocated to the roots. Laterals above 2nd order were the strongest sink in the root system, containing twice as much 14C as the other roots together. Alternation between shoot and root growth can be seen clearly: carbon allocation to roots was relatively high before and after the period of intensive shoot growth. Changes in root sink strength resulted primarily from changes in root sink activity rather than sink size.