Ten-Year Growth Response of Young Douglas-Fir to Variable Density Varnishleaf Ceanothus and Herb Competition

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Abstract:

The effect of different densities of varnishleaf ceanothus (Ceanothus velutinus var. laevigatus) and herbaceous vegetation control on stem diameter, height, and volume of plantation Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii vat. menziesii) seedlings was examined during the 10 yr following planting. Initial densities of ceanothus ranged between 0 and 15,000 seedlings/ha and were obtained by interplanting ceanothus germinants or chemical thinning after clearcutting and broadcast-burning. Herbaceous vegetation control was achieved by a single application of glyphosate following planting, with shrub seedlings covered. Ceanothus density in the range of 0 to 6,750 plants/ha did not have an effect on Douglas-fir diameter, height, or volume at age 10; however, Douglas-fir growth was significantly decreased when ceanothus densities reached 15,000 plants/ha. Ten years after planting, Douglas-fir volume in the treatments with 6,750 ceanothus/ha or less was 1.7 times greater than that in the 15,000 ceanothus/ha treatment. On the other hand, removal of herbaceous vegetation after planting significantly increased tree diameter, height, and volume, regardless of ceanothus density. Even 10 yr after the application of the treatment, trees without early herb competition grew faster and had mean dbh, height, and volume that were 1.02 cm, 0.55 m, and 12.98 dmĀ³/tree greater respectively than those with herbs. Thus, a treatment at plantation establishment to control herbaceous vegetation and to reduce ceanothus density to less than 7,000 plants/ha will ensure an increase in growth and stocking for at least 10 yr. West. J. Appl. For. 14(4):208-213.

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Biological Resources Division, US Geological Survey, 3200 SW Jefferson Way, Corvallis, OR 97331

Publication date: October 1, 1999

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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 Western Journal of Applied Forestry covers the western United States, including Alaska, and western Canada; WJAF will also consider manuscripts reporting research in northern Mexico that has potential application in the southwestern United States.
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