Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Forest Science Program
FIA Project Y073156

    Stand Management Cooperative Growth and Yield Installations in BC
Project lead: de Montigny, Louise (BC Ministry of Forests and Range)
Author: de Montigny, Louise E.
Imprint: [BC] :, 2007
Subject: Forest Investment Account (FIA), British Columbia
Series: Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Forest Science Program
Program- Timber Growth and Value Theme - Basic Research on Tree Growth and Stand Development Topic - Early Stand Growth The Stand Management Co-operative (SMC) is a multi-agency growth and yield co-operative established in 1985. The main objective is to provide a continuing source of consistent, high-quality data on the effects of stand management practices on stand growth and yield, tree growth and yield, wood quality and product recovery through the design, establishment and maintenance of a regional program of integrated research on various aspects of intensive stand management. Of particular interest are the effects of stocking control on early stand growth. SMC currently measures and maintains 92 active research installations that are Type 1 (juvenile spacing), II (commercial thinning), or III (espacement) installations. Each of the SMC installations is a group of permanent sample plots, forming part of the designed experiment, which is established, based on statistical principles to determine and compare the effects of stand management treatments on tree and stand growth and yield. The Ministry does not pay membership dues to the SMC, but is required to meet scheduled obligations for maintenance and measurement of 22 installations located throughout coastal BC. Relevant to the FIA FSP program funding priorities is this year’s scheduled remeasurement of 9 Type III plantation espacement trials. Included in these espacement trials are three installations of yellow cedar and two each of western redcedar and amabilis fir, which meets the priority research needs for this year, as well as one installation each of Sitka spruce and western hemlock. The installations were established in 1987, with six 1.2 ha treatment units planted at a wide range of spacings: 240, 480,720, 1090, 1680 and 2990 stems per hectare. The growth and yield plots were established in 1995 and baseline vegetation surveys done in 1995. Tree remeasurements were done in 1997, 1999, 2001 and the fourth remeasurement is scheduled for 2005. These data will be used to assess both the short- and long-term effects of espacement on stand and individual tree responses, thus meeting the need for understanding critical processes and dynamics of early stand establishment and growth that affect crop tree performance. The data will also contribute to calibrating and validating early stand growth models that will provide better estimates of the biological and economic consequences of alternative management regimes. Some interesting results to date appear to reflect the “crossover" effect. This relationship shows that average height (and DBH) with spacing is reversed from expectation (i.e., smaller heights and DBH with increasing density) but is destined to "crossover" back to expectation once the trees within each spacing become large enough to begin competing with each other. Scott et al. (1993) reported this effect in seven to nine year-old plantations of Douglas-fir where both average total height and average diameter breast height (DBH) increased with increasing density. Several hypotheses have been forwarded to explain this phenomenon, but regardless of the reason for it, the effect is important to understand because of the implications for achieving maximum productivity even over a relatively short rotation period. Continued measurement of these espacement plantations is therefore very important. As part of membership in the SMC and in return for the maintenance and remeasurement of the B.C. SMC installations, Research Branch receives the benefit of staff, student and partner's research projects, data and extension products valued at about $1million yearly. The information includes the response of stand to treatments, appropriate treatment levels and timing, impacts of treatment on final yield and impact of damaging agents following treatment. The statistical approach ensures that objective and meaningful conclusions can be drawn from the data collected from experimental plots. This SMC information is made available to B.C. audiences through our partnership with FORREX. In addition, the data for these installations and all other SMC installations contribute to the Provincial Growth and Yield Program (GYP), an inter-ministry program that provides the data, models, and information needed for essential tasks such as inventory projection, planning silvicultural treatments, calculating stumpage revenues and determining allowable annual cuts.
Related projects:  FSP_Y051156FSP_Y062156


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Updated August 16, 2010 

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