Harvesting Impacts on Soil Properties and Tree Regeneration in Pure and Mixed Aspen Stands

      Impacts of clearcutting and selective harvesting on pure aspen/mixed aspen hardwood stands were examined in northern Minnesota. We studied these impacts on 18 stands, which were harvested 4 to 11 years ago and received no further treatment. In each stand, residual composition, soil compaction, and tree regeneration were determined along a gradient of disturbance in the summer of 1998. This preliminary assessment investigates interacting effects of soil compaction, residual overstory conditions, and timing of harvests. Compaction levels were much more variable in areas that were harvested in summer rather than in winter. Stands harvested in the winter were associated with higher regeneration stem densities and height growth than those harvested in the summer. Tree regeneration stem densities and height growth decreased with increasing soil compaction and increasing residual basal area. These results show the importance of understanding complex interactions between pre-harvest and post-harvest conditions, harvesting disturbance, and soil properties as they determine future stand composition and productivity. 1999

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Harvesting Impacts on Soil Properties and Tree Regeneration in Pure and Mixed Aspen Stands   (1999)

Impacts of clearcutting and selective harvesting on pure aspen/mixed aspen hardwood stands were examined in northern Minnesota. We studied these impacts on 18 stands, which were harvested 4 to 11 years ago and received no further treatment. In each stand, residual composition, soil compaction, and tree regeneration were determined along a gradient of disturbance in the summer of 1998. This preliminary assessment investigates interacting effects of soil compaction, residual overstory conditions, and timing of harvests. Compaction levels were much more variable in areas that were harvested in summer rather than in winter. Stands harvested in the winter were associated with higher regeneration stem densities and height growth than those harvested in the summer. Tree regeneration stem densities and height growth decreased with increasing soil compaction and increasing residual basal area. These results show the importance of understanding complex interactions between pre-harvest and post-harvest conditions, harvesting disturbance, and soil properties as they determine future stand composition and productivity.

Author: Arikian, Melissa J.; Peuttmann, Kiaus J.; Davis, Alaina L.; Host, George E.; Zasada, John

Source: Conference Proceedings. p. 329-331

Citation: Arikian, Melissa J.; Peuttmann, Kiaus J.; Davis, Alaina L.; Host, George E.; Zasada, John  1999.  Harvesting Impacts on Soil Properties and Tree Regeneration in Pure and Mixed Aspen Stands  Conference Proceedings. p. 329-331.

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