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Special Issue "Short Rotation Woody Crop Production Systems for Ecosystem Services and Phytotechnologies"

A special issue of Forests (ISSN 1999-4907). This special issue belongs to the section "Forest Ecology and Management".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Ronald S. Zalesny, Jr.

Team Leader, Research Plant Geneticist, USDA Forest Service, Northern Research Station, Institute for Applied Ecosystem Studies, 5985 Highway K Rhinelander, WI 54501, USA
Website1 | Website2 | E-Mail
Phone: +1 715-362-1132
Interests: the genetic and physiological mechanisms regulating biomass production of short rotation woody crops (e.g., poplars and willows) grown for phytotechnologies and ecosystem services
Guest Editor
Dr. William L. Headlee

School of Forestry & Natural Resources, University of Arkansas at Monticello, 110 University Court Monticello, AR 71656, USA
Arkansas Forest Resources Center, University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, 110 University Court Monticello, AR 71656, USA
Website | E-Mail
Interests: The effects of genotype, environment, and management on tree/forest growth, physical structure, and utilization by livestock and wildlife
Guest Editor
Dr. Raju Y. Soolanayakanahally

Saskatoon Research and Development Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada 107 Science Place Saskatoon, SK, S7N 0X2, Canada
Website | E-Mail
Interests: poplar and willow genetic improvement, agroforestry, ecophysiology, production of bioenergy crops on marginal lands and phytoremediation
Guest Editor
Mr. Jim Richardson

Technical Director Poplar and Willow Council of Canada 1876 Saunderson Drive Ottawa, Ontario K1G 2C5, Canada
Website | E-Mail
Interests: poplar and willow production, management and genetic improvement; agroforestry; bioenergy crops; ecosystem services; silviculture

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Historically, international efforts in the development of short rotation woody crops (SRWCs) focused on the production of biomass for bioenergy, biofuels, and bioproducts, while research and deployment over the past decade has expanded to include broader objectives of achieving multiple ecosystem services. In particular, silvicultural prescriptions developed for SRWCs have been refined to include woody crop production systems for environmental benefits, such as carbon sequestration, water quality and quantity, and soil health. In addition, current systems have been expanded beyond traditional fiber production to other environmental technologies that incorporate SRWCs as vital components for phytotechnologies (e.g., phytoremediation), urban afforestation, ecological restoration, and mine reclamation. In this Special Issue of the journal Forests, we explore the broad range of current research dedicated to international “Short Rotation Woody Crop Production Systems for Ecosystem Services and Phytotechnologies”.

Dr. Ronald S. Zalesny, Jr.
Dr. William L. Headlee
Dr. Raju Y. Soolanayakanahally
Mr. Jim Richardson
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Forests is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • biomass
  • carbon
  • forest restoration
  • mine reclamation
  • phytoremediation
  • soils
  • urban afforestation
  • water

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Investigating the Effect of a Mixed Mycorrhizal Inoculum on the Productivity of Biomass Plantation Willows Grown on Marginal Farm Land
Forests 2018, 9(4), 185; doi:10.3390/f9040185
Received: 28 February 2018 / Revised: 26 March 2018 / Accepted: 30 March 2018 / Published: 4 April 2018
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Abstract
Inoculation with mycorrhizal fungi, proven mediators of soil fertility, has great potential in agricultural and silvicultural systems. This is particularly true in short-rotation coppices (SRCs), where questions of food displacement and fertilization are causes of concern for researchers and policy makers. We set
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Inoculation with mycorrhizal fungi, proven mediators of soil fertility, has great potential in agricultural and silvicultural systems. This is particularly true in short-rotation coppices (SRCs), where questions of food displacement and fertilization are causes of concern for researchers and policy makers. We set out to thoroughly test if current inoculation methods, coupled with reduced fertilization, can demonstrate a growth benefit in SRC willows on marginal lands. Roughly 21,600 Salix miyabeana Seeman (‘SX61’ and ‘SX64’) were planted in a hierarchical design with inoculation treatments randomized first, cultivars randomized second, and fertilization treatments randomized third. This process was repeated across three fields of different marginal soil type (which, in our experiment, were given the descriptive names Sandy, Rocky, and Dry). The inoculum species, Rhizoglomus irregulare Błaszk., Wubet, Renker & Buscot Sieverd., G.A. Silva & Oehl and Hebeloma longicaudum (Pers.) P. Kumm., were chosen as they are most likely to be commercially available, and because they represent both arbuscular and ectomycorrhizal inoculum types. Growth was measured over 2.5 years, or three growing seasons. Fertilization treatment (75 kg/ha Nitrogen), however, was only applied during the second growing season. Our results conclusively showed no benefit from mycorrhizal inoculation across fields that exhibited significantly different growth rates, as well as significant differentiation from fertilization. Full article
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Open AccessArticle The Evaluation of Radiation Use Efficiency and Leaf Area Index Development for the Estimation of Biomass Accumulation in Short Rotation Poplar and Annual Field Crops
Forests 2018, 9(4), 168; doi:10.3390/f9040168
Received: 15 February 2018 / Revised: 14 March 2018 / Accepted: 23 March 2018 / Published: 27 March 2018
PDF Full-text (3855 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
We evaluated the long-term pattern of leaf area index (LAI) dynamics and radiation use efficiency (RUE) in short rotation poplar in uncoppice (single stem) and coppice (multi-stem) plantations, and compared them to annual field crops (AFCs) as an alternative for bioenergy production while
[...] Read more.
We evaluated the long-term pattern of leaf area index (LAI) dynamics and radiation use efficiency (RUE) in short rotation poplar in uncoppice (single stem) and coppice (multi-stem) plantations, and compared them to annual field crops (AFCs) as an alternative for bioenergy production while being more sensitive to weather fluctuation and climate change. The aim of this study was to evaluate the potential of LAI and RUE as indicators for bioenergy production and indicators of response to changing environmental conditions. For this study, we selected poplar clone J-105 (Populus nigra L. × P. maximowiczii A. Henry) and AFCs such as barley (Hordeum vulgare L.), wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), maize (Zea mays L.), and oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.), and compared their aboveground dry mass (AGDM) production in relation to their LAI development and RUE. The results of the study showed the long-term maximum LAI (LAImax) to be 9.5 in coppice poplar when compared to AFCs, where LAImax did not exceed the value 6. The RUE varied between 1.02 and 1.48 g MJ−1 in short rotation poplar and between 0.72 and 2.06 g MJ−1 in AFCs. We found both LAI and RUE contributed to AGDM production in short rotation poplar and RUE only contributed in AFCs. The study confirms that RUE may be considered an AGDM predictor of short rotation poplar and AFCs. This may be utilized for empirical estimates of yields and also contribute to improve the models of short rotation poplar and AFCs for the precise prediction of biomass accumulation in different environmental conditions. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Phytoremediation Efficacy of Salix discolor and S. eriocephela on Adjacent Acidic Clay and Shale Overburden on a Former Mine Site: Growth, Soil, and Foliage Traits
Forests 2017, 8(12), 475; doi:10.3390/f8120475
Received: 27 October 2017 / Revised: 17 November 2017 / Accepted: 28 November 2017 / Published: 2 December 2017
PDF Full-text (3728 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Plants regularly experience suboptimal environments, but this can be particularly acute on highly-disturbed mine sites. Two North American willows—Salix discolor Muhl. (DIS) and S. eriocephala Michx. (ERI)—were established in common-garden field tests on two adjacent coal mine spoil sites: one with high
[...] Read more.
Plants regularly experience suboptimal environments, but this can be particularly acute on highly-disturbed mine sites. Two North American willows—Salix discolor Muhl. (DIS) and S. eriocephala Michx. (ERI)—were established in common-garden field tests on two adjacent coal mine spoil sites: one with high clay content, the other with shale overburden. The high clay content site had 44% less productivity, a pH of 3.6, 42% clay content, high water holding capacity at saturation (64%), and high soil electrical conductivity (EC) of 3.9 mS cm−1. The adjacent shale overburden site had a pH of 6.8, and after removing 56.5% stone content, a high sand content (67.2%), low water holding capacity at saturation (23%), and an EC of 0.9 mS cm−1. The acidic clay soil had significantly greater Na (20×), Ca (2×), Mg (4.4×), S (10×), C (12×) and N (2×) than the shale overburden. Foliar concentrations from the acidic clay site had significantly greater Mg (1.5×), Mn (3.3×), Fe (5.6×), Al (4.6×), and S (2×) than the shale overburden, indicating that these elements are more soluble under acidic conditions. There was no overall species difference in growth; however, survival was greater for ERI than DIS on both sites, thus overall biomass yield was greater for ERI than DIS. Foliar concentrations of ERI were significantly greater than those of DIS for N (1.3×), Ca (1.5×), Mg (1.2×), Fe (2×), Al (1.5×), and S (1.5×). There were no significant negative relationships between metal concentrations and growth or biomass yield. Both willows showed large variation among genotypes within each species in foliar concentrations, and some clones of DIS and ERI had up to 16× the Fe and Al uptake on the acidic site versus the adjacent overburden. Genetic selection among species and genotypes may be useful for reclamation activities aimed at reducing specific metal concentrations on abandoned mine sites. Results show that, despite having a greater water holding capacity, the greater acidity of the clay site resulted in greater metal mobility—in particular Na—and thus a greater EC. It appears that the decline in productivity was not due to toxicity effects from the increased mobility of metals, but rather to low pH and moisture stress from very high soil Na/EC. Full article
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