Date of Award

Spring 1-8-2021

Semester of Degree

May

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

M.S. in Forest and Natural Resources Management

Department

Forest and Natural Resources Management

Major Professor

Chistopher Nowak

Steering Committee Member

Russ Briggs

Steering Committee Member

Julia Burton

Steering Committee Member

Greg McGee

Steering Committee Member

Elizabeth Vidon

Abstract

This study examined the six-year survival and growth response of underplanted 1-0 containerized white pine seedlings to site quality, overstory density, and scarification treatments in four shelterwoods on a high- and low-quality site with abundant, untreated, understory vegetation in the Adirondacks. Overall survival was 57% and was similar between site and overstory treatments. Scarification treatment reduced survival ,which was 63.9% in unscarified subplots and 50.3% in scarified subplots. Average seedling height and diameter across all treatments was 110.0 cm (43.3 in) and 1.7 cm (0.7 in), respectively. While site quality and scarification treatment had no effect on seedling growth, seedlings in plots with 20% relative stand density (RSD) were faster growing than those in the 40% RSD plots. Seedlings in 20% RSD treatment plots were 54% taller and 77% larger in diameter than those in the 40% RSD plots. There was a negative relationship between understory vegetation cover, particularly fern and understory tree, and seedling survival and growth. Rubus cover was positively correlated with growth. These results suggest that moderate success can be achieved planting white pine seedlings in low-density shelterwoods with untreated understory vegetation on low- and high- quality sites in the Adirondacks.

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