The choice of species in forestry is important, and a real issue as large areas of wind-damaged forest land in southern Sweden need to be regenerated. To compare the growth potential between the most common tree species in Sweden, ratios between site quality derived from site index values determined with site properties were used. A regression function to determine site index for birch from site properties was used to complement the known relationships between site properties and site index for spruce and pine. In large regions of Sweden the distribution of site quality classes was calculated to compare the special characteristics and demands of the three species. On average, the growth difference for pine compared to spruce was about 60% in southern Sweden and 95% in northern Sweden. Corresponding figures between birch and spruce were 40% and 60%. Birch was expected to produce around 60% of pine in northern Sweden and about 70% in southern Sweden. However, it must be stressed that the comparison is based on survey data encompassing mainly naturally regenerated birch, whereas spruce and pine are mainly planted.
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Document Type: Research Article
Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre, Alnarp, Sweden
Tonnersjoheden Experimental Forest, Simlångsdalen, Sweden
Jamtland County Council Institute, Hedemora, Sweden
Swedish Forest Agency, Jonkoping, Sweden
Department of Forest Ecology and Management, Umeå, Sweden
Sodra, Head Office, Vaxjo, Sweden
Publication date: August 1, 2008
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