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Competing Vegetation and Pine Growth Response to Silvicultural Treatments in a Six-Year-Old Piedmont Loblolly Pine Plantation

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Combinations of two levels of site preparation (chop vs. shear, pile, and disk) with two levels of herbicide application (annual applications vs. none) resulted in distinct communities of competing vegetation, as well as differential pine growth in a six-year-old loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) plantation in the North Carolina Piedmont. Chopping resulted in communities dominated by hardwood tree species, while shear-pile-disk led to a more even distribution among competing plant growth forms. Herbicide treatment reduced the overall amount of vegetation substantially, but dramatically increased the relative abundance of certain species, many of which are known to be resistant to the herbicides used. Trees, especially hardwoods, had a significant negative impact on the current growth increment of planted pines. No significant relationships were detected between pine growth and amounts of other growth forms of competing vegetation, such as forbs, grasses, shrubs, or vines. Shear-pile-disk-treated plots had higher species richness, evenness, and diversity than chopped plots, particularly on plots not treated with herbicide. South. J. Appl. For. 15(3):138-144.

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Department of Botany, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695-7612

Publication date: 1991-08-01

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  • 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 Southern Journal of Applied Forestry covers an area from Virginia and Kentucky south to as far west as Oklahoma and east Texas.
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