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Forests 2014, 5(12), 3199-3221; doi:10.3390/f5123199

Transformation of a Degraded Pinus massoniana Plantation into a Mixed-Species Irregular Forest: Impacts on Stand Structure and Growth in Southern China

1
Key Laboratory for Silviculture and Conservation of Ministry of Education, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China
2
Institute of Forest Resource and Information Techniques, Chinese Academy of Forestry, Beijing 100091, China
3
Experimental Center for Tropical Forestry, Chinese Academy of Forestry, 532600, Pingxiang City, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region 532600, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 8 October 2014 / Revised: 4 December 2014 / Accepted: 4 December 2014 / Published: 12 December 2014
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Abstract

We transformed a Pinus massoniana plantation, the most important conifer plantation in southern China, with four different transformation treatments, in which Pinus massoniana was thinned to a density of 70%, and then differing richness and compositions of enrichment plantings were added. In order to examine the effects of the transformation, we compared species composition, stand structure and growth pattern in transformed stands with those in control stands. The results suggested that in the transformed stands species composition was diverse with trees both from the enrichment plantings and from natural recruitment. The size structure was changed such that the diameter at breast height (DBH) distribution tended to shift from a nearly normal distribution to an irregular multi-modal distribution. Substantial new ingrowth was found in the small DBH classes. The residual trees in the transformed stands were significantly larger than in the control treatment. However, for all trees, the control stands had the largest mean size, even though the residual tree growth was significantly smaller in the control stands. Finally, transformation treatment A4, which had the smallest overall mortality rate and simultaneously the mortality rate of each tree species was smaller than the corresponding value in other transformation treatments, was identified as the optimal transformation. View Full-Text
Keywords: conifer plantation; transformation treatments; species composition; stand structure; growth pattern conifer plantation; transformation treatments; species composition; stand structure; growth pattern
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Meng, J.; Lu, Y.; Zeng, J. Transformation of a Degraded Pinus massoniana Plantation into a Mixed-Species Irregular Forest: Impacts on Stand Structure and Growth in Southern China. Forests 2014, 5, 3199-3221.

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