Current issue: 55(3)
Under compilation: 55(4)
The effects of two alternative formulations of sapwood senescence on the behaviour of model LIGNUM (with parameter values adjusted for Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) growing southern Finland) were studied. The two alternatives were autonomous sapwood senescence assuming a maximum age for the tree ring, and sapwood senescence that is controlled by the mortality of foliage. For the latter alternative two hypothetical further mechanisms were stipulated. All the formulations were implemented in LIGNUM. Simulations were made with all model variants for fertile and poor soil conditions using high, normal and low rates of foliage mortality. The simulation results were compared against of a data set consisting of 11 open grown Scots pine trees from southern Finland. Observations of heartwood proportion were used in this study. They show that heartwood starts to increase in trees from age of approximately 20 years onwards. The simulation results showed no differences between fertile and poor soil conditions as regards heartwood formation. Of the variants of foliage-controlled sapwood senescence the one where death of sapwood in a tree segment induces sapwood senescence in the tree parts below only slightly was the best. This and the autonomous sapwood senescence corresponded equally well to the observations. In order to make more refined conclusions additional data and simulations are necessary.
A metabolic model of height growth and site index is derived from a parametrization of the annual carbon balance of a tree. The parametrization is based on pipe-model theory. Four principal variants of the height-growth model correspond to four combinations of assumptions regarding carbon allocation: (a) the apical shoot is autonomous or (b) it is not; and (A) the specific rate of elongation of a shoot equals that of a woody root or (B) it does not. The bB model is the most general as it includes the aA, bA, and aB models as special cases. If the physiological parameters are constant, then the aA model reduces to the form of the Mitscherlich model and the bA model to the form of a Bertalanffy model. Responses of height growth to year-to-year variation in atmospheric conditions are rendered through adjustments of a subset of the model's parameters, namely, the specific rate of production of carbon substrate and three specific rates of maintenance respiration. As an example, the effect of the increasing atmospheric concentration of CO2 on the time-course of tree height of loblolly pine (Pinus taeda) is projected over 50-year span from 1986. Site index is predicted to increase and, more importantly, the shape of the site-index curve is predicted to change.