Current issue: 53(4)
Root systems of a Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) stands of seed trees on a Vaccinium sites in Southern Finland were studied by taking soil samples around the seed trees. The results show that root system of an old Scots pine spreads relatively evenly around the tree up to at least 10 meters from the stem. The densest part of the root system is near the stem, which part is often acentric. This is probably due to root competition in the early stages of growth of the tree.
Root systems of the seed trees affect stocking of the site with seedlings and the growth of the seedlings. The root competition can cause, for instance, uneven grouping of the seedlings. It seems that the largest trees of a stand have the most even root system. It is therefore recommended to choose the strongest trees of the stand as seed trees, to ensure even distribution of seedlings.
The Acta Forestalia Fennica issue 61 was published in honour of professor Eino Saari’s 60th birthday.
The PDF includes a summary in German.
The study is based on observations in a Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) stand on a dry upland forest site in Karhumäki, where a 10-15-year old seedling stand grew under a hold-overs of larger trees that had been left in the site in a previous felling. The root systems of 80-120 cm tall seedlings growing around single mother trees were unearthed. Root maps were drawn of the root systems of 120 seedlings.
No seedlings grew around old, large hold-overs. It seems that seedlings could not compete with their root system. If the hold-overs were stunted in their growth, seedlings grew also under the canopy of the mother tree. 90% of the seedlings had a tap root. Rest of the roots grew horisontally in the topsoil. Around a vigorous mother tree, the seedlings grew their roots away from the mother tree. Hold-overs that had belonged originally to the lower canopy layer of the old forest did not have similar effect on the root orientation of the seedlings. Their roots had been previously affected by trees of higher canopy layer, later removed in the felling.
The PDF includes a summary in German.
The study uses the methodology of ecological field theory to model the effect of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seed trees on the density of tree seedlings and other plants in the field layer. The seed trees had a clear effect on the expected value of the amount and distribution of the ground vegetation. The vicinity of seed trees had an adverse effect on the growth of grasses, herbs and seedlings, while mosses were most abundant near the trees. Models based on the ecological field approach were derived to describe the effect of seed trees on the ground vegetation.
The PDF includes an abstract in Finnish.
Prescribed burning has reported to avail forest regeneration, for instance, by releasing nutrients for the use of seedlings, changing the pH of the soil and decreasing competition of ground vegetation. The aim of the study was to find out if the effects could be verified. Sample plots were measured in the experimental area of Tuomarniemi, in Central Finland, both in previously burned and untreated seedling stands and young forests. The main species in the sample plots was Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.).
According to the results, prescribed burning prepares the soil for regeneration. Germination percentage of the seeds is higher on the burned soil. All the species, Scots pine, Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) and birch species (Betula sp.) grow faster. Prescribed burning increases the amount of birch seedlings by improving its regeneration compared to unburned sites. The seed trees survive burning better if they are tall and have short crown, and have thick bark. In general, prescribed burning improves regeneration in seed tree stands.
The article includes a summary in German.