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Technical Commentary—Severing Red Alder: Timing the Cut to Achieve the Best Mortality

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The best time to cut red alder varies. Mortality shifts across regional zones. The most effective time to cut is not determined by calendar date, but instead depends on environmental, biological, and physical factors that affect initial budbreak and potential mortality. Several trials and continuing observations lead the author to believe air temperature and seasonal moisture, along with carbohydrate reserve, are the more potent influences. These influences affect the time to begin cutting, how long cutting can continue, when cutting should stop, and the degree of mortality. Monitoring budbreak date and moisture patterns can be used to determine a favorable window of opportunity that will produce 50% or higher mortality on the cut red alder. The cutting window can be used across wide geoclimatic zones with good success. West. J. Appl. For. 18(3):199–201.

Keywords: Cutting; environmental management; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; natural resource management; natural resources; red alder; timing; weather

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: Washington State Department of Natural Resources, State Lands Division, Silviculture Section, P.O. Box 47016 Olympia, WA, 98504-7016,

Publication date: July 1, 2003

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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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