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Publication Information

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Title: On the sustainable productivity of planted forests

Author: Powers, Robert F.;

Date: 1999

Source: New Forests. 17: 253-306

Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)

Description: Planted forests have more than a millennium of history and represent the world's best hope for meeting global wood requirements in the twenty-first century. Advances in genetic improvement, nursery practices, stand establishment, and tending, harvesting, and manufacturing have boosted plantation yields to a higher level than at any point in history. Despite this, forest managers face a mounting challenge to demonstrate that plantation productivity is sustainable. Tackling this challenge requires a sound understanding of the principles of forest productivity, how they apply to a developing plantation, and how they are influenced by management. In this paper criticisms of plantation forestry are discussed from the basis of world experience, and examples of productivity decline are described. Obvious declines are rare, and can be attributed to poor soil management. However, ambiguities exist and controversy will continue until sustainable productivity can be demonstrated conclusively. Proposed programs aim to provide the technical base needed for sound soil management and sustainable plantation productivity.

Keywords: history of plantations, site potential, nutrition, soil properties, plantation yield

Publication Notes:

  • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.



Powers, R.F. 1999. On the sustainable productivity of planted forests. New Forests. 17: 253-306.


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