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Open AccessArticle

A New Approach for Modeling Volume Response from Mid-Rotation Fertilization of Pinus taeda L. Plantations

Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources, North Carolina State University, 2820 Faucette Dr., Campus Box 8001, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602–2152, USA
Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 310 W Campus Dr, Campus Box 169, Blacksburg, VA 24061, USA
Facultad de Ciencias Forestales, Universidad de Concepción, Casilla 160-C, Concepción, Chile
Department of Forest Science, Federal University of Lavras, Lavras, Campus Universitário, Campus Universitário, Campus Box 3037 Minas Gerais 37200–000, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2020, 11(6), 646;
Received: 21 April 2020 / Revised: 23 May 2020 / Accepted: 29 May 2020 / Published: 6 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Modeling Forest Stand Dynamics, Growth and Yield)
Mid-rotation fertilization presents an opportunity to increase the economic return of plantation forests in the southeastern United States (SEUS). For this reason, the Forest Productivity Cooperative established a series of mid-rotation fertilization trials in Pinus taeda L. plantations across the SEUS between 1984 and 1987. These trials identified site-specific responses to nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) fertilizers, resulting in increased stand production for 6–10 years after fertilization. There are successful volume response models that allow users to quantify the gain in stand productivity resulting from fertilization. However, all the current models depend on empirical relationships that are not bounded by biological response, meaning that greater fertilizer additions continue to create more volume gains, regardless of physiological limits. To address this shortcoming, we developed a bounded response model that evaluates relative volume response gain to fertilizer addition. Site index and relative spacing are included as model parameters to help provide realistic estimates. The model is useful for evaluating productivity gain in Pinus taeda stands that are fertilized with N and P in mid-rotation. View Full-Text
Keywords: biological soundness; maximum likelihood; bounded estimates; modeling fertilization biological soundness; maximum likelihood; bounded estimates; modeling fertilization
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Scolforo, H.F.; Montes, C.; Cook, R.L.; Lee Allen, H.; Albaugh, T.J.; Rubilar, R.; Campoe, O. A New Approach for Modeling Volume Response from Mid-Rotation Fertilization of Pinus taeda L. Plantations. Forests 2020, 11, 646.

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