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Planting density (often referred to as "espacement") has large potential impacts on the amount, size, and value of timber harvested from managed forests and on biological and technical rotation lengths. The growth and yield impacts of different planting density regimes is currently facilitated by growth prediction models that were developed or calibrated for use in British Columbia. However, the available long-term database is limited and fragmented, and much of the long-term data have been obtained from sources outside of British Columbia. There is currently a lack of quantitative information required to identify optimum plantation management regimes for achieving specific timber yield and product objectives.
Several long-term experimental projects (EP's) testing a variety of species and planting density regimes have been established by the BC Ministry of Forests, Research Branch throughout the province. The earliest espacement trials were established in the early 1960's. In the BC interior, a major research initiative was begun in the mid- 1980's.
Experimental Projects - Coast
Experimental Projects - Interior
Planting Density Publications
Armit, D. 1970. A planting trial with white spruce, Fort Babine. B.C. Ministry of Forests, Victoria. Research Note 50.
Illingworth, K. and M.B. Clark. 1966. Planting trials with ponderosa pine in British Columbia. B.C. Ministry of Forests, Victoria. Research Note 41.
Johnstone, W.D. and J.C. Pollack. 1990. The influence of espacement on the growth and development of a lodgepole pine plantation. Can. J. For. Res. 20: 1631-1639.
Omule, S.A.Y. 1988. Early growth of four species planted at three spacings on Vancouver Island. B.C. Ministry of Forests, Victoria. FRDA Report 009. (EP571)
Omule, S.A.Y. and G.J. Krumlik. 1987. Juvenile height growth of four species on four sites in the CWHb1 variant. B.C. Ministry of Forests, Victoria. FRDA Report 007. (EP571)
Pollack, J.C., W. Johnstone, K.D. Coates, and P. LePage. 1992. The influence of initial espacement on the growth of a 32-year-old white spruce plantation. B.C. Ministry of Forests, Victoria. Research Note No. 111.
Pollack, J., F. van Thienen, and P. LePage. 1990. The influence of initial espacement on the growth of a 27-year-old Sitka spruce plantation. B.C. Ministry of Forests, Victoria. Research Note No. 104.
Thompson, C.F. 1974. Tenth year remeasurements of planting trials with ponderosa pine. B.C. Ministry of Forests, Victoria. Research Note 65.
Xie, C.Y., W.D. Johnstone, and C.C. Ying. 1995. Spacing and provenance effects on the performance of shore pine (Pinus contorta var. contorta): 20-year test results. Can. J. For. Res. 25: 567-576.