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Title: Western redcedar response to precommercial thinning and fertilization through 25 years posttreatment

Author: Devine, Warren D.; Harrington, Constance A.;

Date: 2009

Source: Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 39: 619-628

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: There is little infonnation available on the long-term effects of managing western redcedar (Thuja plicata Donn ex D. Don). In a 15- to 20-year-old naturally regenerated second-growth redcedar stand on a poor site on the Olympic Peninsula of Washington, we tested crop tree (largest 250 trees/ha) response to precommercial thinning and fertilization in a replicated study. Fertilization treatments were N or N+P applied at study installation and year 13; precommercial thinning occurred at installation. Precommercial thinning without fertilization produced a sustained increase in periodic individual-tree basal area (BA) growth rate from years 3 through 25 posttreatment. However, through year 12, higher BA growth rates resulted from fertilization. During years 13 through 25, when intraspecific competition increased, the highest BA growth rate resulted from the combination of fertilization and precommercial thinning. Compared with the unthinned unfertilized control, fertilization without thinning increased year-25 crop-tree height by 34 percent and BA by 137 percent; thinning without fertilization increased height by 11 percent and BA by 91 percent. Height to live-crown base was decreased by thinning but increased by fertilization, whereas thinning significantly increased stem taper on the lower bole. Treatment responses and foliar analyses indicate crop tree growth was substantially limited by nutrient availability.

Keywords: Western redcedar, Thuja plicata, precommercial thinning, fertilization, tree growth

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Devine, Warren D.; Harrington, Constance A. 2009. Western redcedar response to precommercial thinning and fertilization through 25 years posttreatment. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 39: 619-628


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