Current issue: 54(2)
The aim of this study was to determine under what conditions and with what premises the growing of Betula pubescens Ehrh. is an economically competitive alternative to the growing of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) in drained peatlands. The basic material consisted of all drainage projects in Ostrobothnia in Western Finland in 1937–38 and 1957–59, according to the archives of the Central Board of Forestry Tapio, including such areas that were at least moderately fertile and had birch dominated young stands or no tree cover. A total of 202 sample plots were measured.
According to the results, the discounted timber yield of the thinned B. pubescens stands is about 10% greater than that of untreated stands. The removing of birch seedlings and the subsequent growing of fully stocked Scots pine is more profitable than growing B. pubescens stands only if the establishment and subsequent development of the pine stand involve no costs. If the site in question is a fertile open drained peatland, establishment of a pine stand is obviously a better financial proposition than a naturally regenerated birch stand. However, if there is already a fully stocked young birch stand on the site, it is more economical to let it grow using a shortish rotation time.
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