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Title: Crafting a competitive edge: white spruce regeneration in Alaska.

Author: Thompson, Jonathan.;

Date: 2005

Source: Science Findings 69. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 5 p

Publication Series: Science Findings

Description: Over the past two decades, unprecedented levels of disturbance have occurred in the white spruce forests of Alaska. Spruce bark beetles, fires, and timber harvests have left millions of acres of dead spruce with little spruce regeneration. To assist public and private landowners, Pacific Northwest Research (PNW) Station scientists are testing various approaches to white spruce regeneration.

In search of a competitive advantage for spruce seedlings, experimental plots have been designed and replicated on five sites across Alaska. Researchers are testing mechanical and chemical approaches to removing competing plant species. Nursery seedlings of different sizes have been planted on each site and their growth rates are being monitored. Additionally, in an effort to improve wildlife habitat, some sites were planted with a mixture of hardwood species known to be palatable to moose.

Spruce seedlings benefited from both types of site preparation, although survival was highest on the sites pretreated with a common herbicide. The fastest growing seedlings were the ones that were largest when they were planted. Moose were attracted to the mixed species sites and assisted in spruce regeneration by keeping hardwoods from overtopping the spruce which suggests that multiple resource objectives could be approached simultaneously.

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.
  • You may send email to pnw_pnwpubs@fs.fed.us to request a hard copy of this publication. (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)

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Citation:


Thompson, Jonathan. 2005. Crafting a competitive edge: white spruce regeneration in Alaska. Science Findings 69. Portland, OR: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. 5 p

 


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