Growth and wood properties of Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.) in nursing mixtures established on nitrogen-deficient mineral soils

A D Cameron, B A Watson

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3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Rate of growth and wood properties of Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.) were investigated in triplet mixtures with lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Loud.) (Alaskan provenance) and Japanese larch (Larix kaempferi (Lamb.) Carr.), established on nitrogen-deficient, iron pan soils. These "nursing" mixtures were compared with pure stands of Sitka spruce that had been either regularly or periodically fertilized with nitrogen. Japanese larch promoted a growth rate in Sitka spruce greater than that achieved in the lodgepole pine-nursed spruce and equivalent to the two pure spruce treatments over the duration of the experiment (current age 28 yrs). Growth of regularly fertilized pure Sitka spruce was not significantly greater than that of periodically fertilized pure spruce. Alaskan lodgepole pine controlled branch size on the lower part of the spruce stems more effectively than the other treatments, although this may have been a function of tree size. Branch characteristics of Japanese larch-nursed spruce, however, were similar to those of the pure spruce treatments. Japanese larch caused an imbalance in crown development in the spruce, although it is unclear from the present study whether this will have an influence on stem and wood quality by the end of the rotation. Overall, the evidence from this study suggests that Japanese larch is an effective nurse of Sitka spruce on nitrogen-deficient iron pans, maintaining a rate of growth similar to that of pure Sitka spruce periodically fertilized with nitrogen and higher than that observed in spruce nursed by Alaskan lodgepole pine.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-246
Number of pages10
JournalScandinavian Journal of Forest Research
Volume15
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Keywords

  • branching habit
  • nursing mixtures
  • Picea sitchensis
  • wood properties

Cite this

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title = "Growth and wood properties of Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.) in nursing mixtures established on nitrogen-deficient mineral soils",
abstract = "Rate of growth and wood properties of Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.) were investigated in triplet mixtures with lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Loud.) (Alaskan provenance) and Japanese larch (Larix kaempferi (Lamb.) Carr.), established on nitrogen-deficient, iron pan soils. These {"}nursing{"} mixtures were compared with pure stands of Sitka spruce that had been either regularly or periodically fertilized with nitrogen. Japanese larch promoted a growth rate in Sitka spruce greater than that achieved in the lodgepole pine-nursed spruce and equivalent to the two pure spruce treatments over the duration of the experiment (current age 28 yrs). Growth of regularly fertilized pure Sitka spruce was not significantly greater than that of periodically fertilized pure spruce. Alaskan lodgepole pine controlled branch size on the lower part of the spruce stems more effectively than the other treatments, although this may have been a function of tree size. Branch characteristics of Japanese larch-nursed spruce, however, were similar to those of the pure spruce treatments. Japanese larch caused an imbalance in crown development in the spruce, although it is unclear from the present study whether this will have an influence on stem and wood quality by the end of the rotation. Overall, the evidence from this study suggests that Japanese larch is an effective nurse of Sitka spruce on nitrogen-deficient iron pans, maintaining a rate of growth similar to that of pure Sitka spruce periodically fertilized with nitrogen and higher than that observed in spruce nursed by Alaskan lodgepole pine.",
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author = "Cameron, {A D} and Watson, {B A}",
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journal = "Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research",
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TY - JOUR

T1 - Growth and wood properties of Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.) in nursing mixtures established on nitrogen-deficient mineral soils

AU - Cameron, A D

AU - Watson, B A

PY - 2000

Y1 - 2000

N2 - Rate of growth and wood properties of Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.) were investigated in triplet mixtures with lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Loud.) (Alaskan provenance) and Japanese larch (Larix kaempferi (Lamb.) Carr.), established on nitrogen-deficient, iron pan soils. These "nursing" mixtures were compared with pure stands of Sitka spruce that had been either regularly or periodically fertilized with nitrogen. Japanese larch promoted a growth rate in Sitka spruce greater than that achieved in the lodgepole pine-nursed spruce and equivalent to the two pure spruce treatments over the duration of the experiment (current age 28 yrs). Growth of regularly fertilized pure Sitka spruce was not significantly greater than that of periodically fertilized pure spruce. Alaskan lodgepole pine controlled branch size on the lower part of the spruce stems more effectively than the other treatments, although this may have been a function of tree size. Branch characteristics of Japanese larch-nursed spruce, however, were similar to those of the pure spruce treatments. Japanese larch caused an imbalance in crown development in the spruce, although it is unclear from the present study whether this will have an influence on stem and wood quality by the end of the rotation. Overall, the evidence from this study suggests that Japanese larch is an effective nurse of Sitka spruce on nitrogen-deficient iron pans, maintaining a rate of growth similar to that of pure Sitka spruce periodically fertilized with nitrogen and higher than that observed in spruce nursed by Alaskan lodgepole pine.

AB - Rate of growth and wood properties of Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis (Bong.) Carr.) were investigated in triplet mixtures with lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Loud.) (Alaskan provenance) and Japanese larch (Larix kaempferi (Lamb.) Carr.), established on nitrogen-deficient, iron pan soils. These "nursing" mixtures were compared with pure stands of Sitka spruce that had been either regularly or periodically fertilized with nitrogen. Japanese larch promoted a growth rate in Sitka spruce greater than that achieved in the lodgepole pine-nursed spruce and equivalent to the two pure spruce treatments over the duration of the experiment (current age 28 yrs). Growth of regularly fertilized pure Sitka spruce was not significantly greater than that of periodically fertilized pure spruce. Alaskan lodgepole pine controlled branch size on the lower part of the spruce stems more effectively than the other treatments, although this may have been a function of tree size. Branch characteristics of Japanese larch-nursed spruce, however, were similar to those of the pure spruce treatments. Japanese larch caused an imbalance in crown development in the spruce, although it is unclear from the present study whether this will have an influence on stem and wood quality by the end of the rotation. Overall, the evidence from this study suggests that Japanese larch is an effective nurse of Sitka spruce on nitrogen-deficient iron pans, maintaining a rate of growth similar to that of pure Sitka spruce periodically fertilized with nitrogen and higher than that observed in spruce nursed by Alaskan lodgepole pine.

KW - branching habit

KW - nursing mixtures

KW - Picea sitchensis

KW - wood properties

M3 - Article

VL - 15

SP - 237

EP - 246

JO - Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research

JF - Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research

SN - 0282-7581

ER -