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Title: Site quality changes in response to slash retention and prescribed fire in thinned ponderosa pine forests

Author: Busse, Matt;

Date: 2010

Source: In: Jain, Theresa B.; Graham, Russell T.; Sandquist, Jonathan. Integrated management of carbon sequestration and biomass utilization opportunities in a changing climate: Proceedings of the 2009 National Silviculture Workshop; 2009 June 15-18; Boise, ID. Proceedings RMRS-P-61. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 239-250.

Publication Series: Proceedings (P)

   Note: This article is part of a larger document. View the larger document

Description: The ecological effects of post-thinning slash retention on vegetation, wildlife browse, and soil were evaluated in sixty-year-old stands of second-growth pine in central Oregon. Three slash-retention treatments were compared: whole-tree removal, bole-only removal, and thin no removal (boles and slash scattered on site). The study intent was to create a wide gradient of surface organic matter mass among treatments and assess any ensuing changes in site quality. No differences in site or soil productivity indices were found among the slash-retention treatments after 20 years. Tree growth, understory plant production and diversity, wildlife browse cover, litter decay, soil nutrients, and soil biological activity were similar among the treatments, suggesting that the retention of thinning slash is trivial to the health of these forests. In general, thinning alone, regardless of slash treatment, and thinning with subsequent burning were sound options for reducing wildfire hazard and maintaining site quality in these pine ecosystems.

Keywords: site productivity, thinning slash, prescribed fire, organic matter, pumice soil

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Citation:


Busse, Matt. 2010. Site quality changes in response to slash retention and prescribed fire in thinned ponderosa pine forests. In: Jain, Theresa B.; Graham, Russell T.; Sandquist, Jonathan. Integrated management of carbon sequestration and biomass utilization opportunities in a changing climate: Proceedings of the 2009 National Silviculture Workshop; 2009 June 15-18; Boise, ID. Proceedings RMRS-P-61. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 239-250.

 


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