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Forests 2018, 9(10), 640;

The Impact of Strip Roads on the Productivity of Spruce Plantations

Institute of Forestry, Lithuanian Research Centre for Agriculture and Forestry, Liepų Street 1, LT-53101 Girionys, Kaunas District, Lithuania
Aleksandras Stulginskis University, Studentų str. 11, LT-53361 Akademija, Kaunas District, Lithuania
Kaunas Forestry and Environmental Engineering University of Applied Sciences, Liepų str. 1, LT-53101 Girionys, Kaunas District, Lithuania
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 September 2018 / Revised: 8 October 2018 / Accepted: 10 October 2018 / Published: 13 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Forest Ecology and Management)
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Strip roads serve to enable silviculture operations, maintain biodiversity, and decrease damages to the soil and environment. At the same time, strip roads decrease the productive area. The aim of this study is to evaluate the influence of strip roads on the productivity of spruce plantations growing in different density regimes. Five trials, each of 0.234 ha area, with different density regimes and two replications in an experimental spruce plantation were used for this study. The permanent plots were established in the plantation of 15 years of age and were remeasured every 4–5 years over 24 years. Differences in tree growth between outer rows bordering strip roads and inner rows, 1.75 and 3.5 m from the strip road, were estimated using t statistics. The gross annual increment of trees in outer rows at age 39 years exceeded the increment of trees in inner rows by up to 60%–78%. Increase of productivity occurred primarily due to the more intensive diameter growth and higher density of trees in the outer rows. In general, the influence of strip roads on the total productivity of plantation depends on the ratio of the growth intensity of trees between outer and inner rows as well as ratio of the width of treed strips to the width of the strip road. View Full-Text
Keywords: productivity loss; inner and outer rows; gross increment productivity loss; inner and outer rows; gross increment

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Kuliešis, A.; Aleinikovas, M.; Linkevičius, E.; Kuliešis, A.A.; Saladis, J.; Škėma, M.; Šilinskas, B.; Beniušienė, L. The Impact of Strip Roads on the Productivity of Spruce Plantations. Forests 2018, 9, 640.

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