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Open AccessArticle

Effects of Thinning on the Spatial Structure of Larix principis-rupprechtii Plantation

1
College of Soil and Water Conservation, Beijing Forestry University, Beijing 100083, China
2
State Environmental Protection Key Laboratory of Regional Eco-process and Function Assessment, State Key Laboratory of Environmental Criteria and Risk Assessment, Chinese Research Academy of Environmental Sciences, Beijing 100012, China
3
Chinese Academy of Forestry, Institute of Desertification Studies, Beijing 100091, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2018, 10(4), 1250; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041250
Received: 23 December 2017 / Revised: 15 April 2018 / Accepted: 17 April 2018 / Published: 19 April 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Ecology and Forest Management)
Structure-based forest management is a scientific and easy-to-operate method for sustainable forest management. We analyzed the stand spatial structure of Larix principis-rupprechtii plantation under five reserve densities. The results indicated that with the decrease of densities after thinning, the average mingling degree and uniform angle index had an increasing tendency, but the amplitude was small. Most of the trees were in zero mix, and a few of them were in moderate, strong, and relatively strong mix; the horizontal distribution patterns were uniform or near-uniform random. The distribution of neighborhood comparison and opening degree changed with a fluctuant pattern, but thinning decreased the competitive intensities to some extent. A composite structure index (Ci) was established, based on the relative importance of the above four indicators, to evaluate the overall effect of thinning on stand structure characteristics. The findings showed that Ci increased with the increase of thinning intensity, that is, the stand spatial structure became more complex. This indicated that Ci may be a simple and rapid indicator to evaluate the overall effect of thinning on stand spatial structure within densities after thinning. View Full-Text
Keywords: plantation; thinning; spatial structure; Larix principis-rupprechtii; structure-based forest management; composite structure index plantation; thinning; spatial structure; Larix principis-rupprechtii; structure-based forest management; composite structure index
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Ye, S.; Zheng, Z.; Diao, Z.; Ding, G.; Bao, Y.; Liu, Y.; Gao, G. Effects of Thinning on the Spatial Structure of Larix principis-rupprechtii Plantation. Sustainability 2018, 10, 1250.

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