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Title: Genetic variation in response to shade in coastal Douglas-fir.

Author: St. Clair, J. Bradley; Sniezko, Richard A.;

Date: 1999

Source: Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 29: 1751-1763.

Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication

Description: Tree improvement programs have generally relied on testing families in open light environments. With increased interest in multiaged silvicultural systems, some people have questioned whether families selected in the open are appropriate for planting in the shade. We grew Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco var. menziesii) families from two climatically distinct seed sources for 2 years under four levels of shade. The response to shade differed for several traits between the two populations and among families within populations. The magnitude of variation associated with the interaction, however, was small compared with the overall effects of genetic selection or of shade. Families selected based on performance in an open light environment resulted in nearly the same response to selection when grown under shade as families selected based on performance in the shade. We conclude that seedlings from families selected in an open light environment are appropriate for use in the low-light environments of alternative silvicultural systems and that use of such genetically selected stock may compensate for the less favorable growing conditions. Genetic selection may contribute importantly to meeting multiple objectives, including the production of significant amounts of wood as well as the efficient and timely creation of large stand structures needed for other forest values.

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St. Clair, J. Bradley; Sniezko, Richard A. 1999. Genetic variation in response to shade in coastal Douglas-fir. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 29: 1751-1763.

 


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