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Dynamics of American Beech Regeneration 10 Years following Harvesting in a Beech Bark Disease-Affected Stand in Maine

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Abstract:

Root sprouting following harvesting of American beech has resulted in the development of dense, slow-growing thickets in many stands throughout Maine and the northeastern United States. The problem is compounded by the presence of beech bark disease, as most sprouts arise from roots of disease-susceptible genotypes. Ten-year post-harvest regeneration conditions were examined in a central Maine beech stand harvested in both winter and summer with partial cutting and clearcuts. Initially, sprouts in winter cuts survived longer than those in summer cuts. After 10 years, we found that beech regeneration survival in the winter treatments continued to be higher than in the summer treatments. Disease-resistant American beech of high vigor left in clearcuts without the protection of surrounding trees were highly susceptible to decline and death from exposure. Leaving a small buffer of unharvested trees around resistant beech is recommended.

Keywords: American beech; beech bark disease; regeneration survival; root sprouting

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-09-01

More about this publication?
  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Northern Journal of Applied Forestry covers northeastern, midwestern, and boreal forests in the United States and Canada.
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