Pine growth and plant community response to chemical vs. mechanical site preparation for establishing loblolly and slash pine

Miller, J.H.; Qiu ZhiJuan

General Technical Report Southern Research Station, USDA Forest Service ( SRS-1): 537-548


Accession: 003231973

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The effects of chemical and mechanical site preparation methods for establishing loblolly (Pinus taeda) and slash (P. elliottii var. elliottii) pine were studied, following integrated fuelwood-pulpwood harvesting and conventional whole tree logging of pines and hardwoods in southern Alabama, USA. Re-vegetation was assessed in year 1, planted pines were measured after 2 and 5 years, and the soil bulk density was examined. Site preparation treatments generally shifted the herbaceous component from grasses to forbs and blackberries (Rubus spp.). After integrated harvesting, mechanical and herbicide treatments performed equally well for loblolly pine, while discing treatments yielded greater 5th-year volumes than herbicide methods with slash pine. On conventional harvested sites, mechanical and chemical treatments performed equally well. Pine volumes were 10-fold greater within-windrows than between windrows. A single discing treatment returned top soils to pre-harvest bulk densities.