Current issue: 56(4)
In South-West Finland the usual method to make leaf fodder for cattle has been to cut the branches and collect the new sprouts again next year. According to this review, the most common tree species to be topped is Betula sp. Downy Birch (Betula pubescens Ehrh.) grows shoots easier than silver birch (B. pendula Roth). The topped forests are usually small and situated near the settlements, next to the fields and meadows. The birch trees are typically cut when they are 15-20 years old. Regularly topped birch rots easily and seldom exceeds 50 years. The capacity to grow shoots depends on the age of the tree, site and time of the cutting. The risk for rotting can be decreased by removing only part of the shoots and cutting the shoots a short distance from the base of the shoot. Collecting leaf fodder decreased in Finland, and was common only in the South-West Finland and Åland.
The PDF includes a summary in German.