Patterns in growth of earlywood, latewood, and percentage latewood determined by complete analysis of 18 Douglas-fir trees
Smith, J.H.G.; Heger, L.; Hejjas, J.
Can J Bot 44(4): 453-466
Widths of earlywood and latewood in each annual ring, measured on an average radius on a disk taken halfway between each branch whorl, were analyzed to define their variation in 18 Douglas-fir trees (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco). Distribution of ring width and percentage latewood also was investigated in these trees which had from 20 to 50 whorls above stump height. Multiple regression and correlation analyses showed that number of rings from pith, and its reciprocal, square, or logarithm accounted for most of the variation in radial growth. Number of rings from pith influenced thickness of both earlywood and latewood much more than the climatic differences reflected by variations in annual height growth and in widths of earlywood and latewood formed at breast height in the same calendar year. Since earlywood and latewood are distributed differently and controlled by different factors, they should be studied separately within annual rings. The statistical methods used in this study provide a simple, efficient, and comprehensive basis for thoroughly describing growth patterns, and for objectively analyzing factors that govern growth.