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Title: Influence of Different Thinning Treatments on Stand Resistance to Snow and Wind in Loblolly Pine (Pinus taeda L.) Coastal Plantations of Northern Iran
Authors: Picchio, Rodolfo 
Tavankar, Farzam
Latterini, Francesco
Jourgholami, Meghdad
Karamdost Marian, Behroz
Venanzi, Rachele 
Journal: FORESTS 
Issue Date: 2020
Loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) is one of the main exotic conifer species that has been widely planted for the past fifty years for timber production in the coastal areas of northern Iran. Heavy snowfall and strong winds can cause much damage to these forests over a short time span of only a few years. This study was conducted to estimate snow and wind damage and analyze the role of stand thinning in their resistance to snow and wind. Amount and type of snow and wind damage were examined through systematic (80 m × 80 m) sample plots (each plot area of 625 m2 ) in nine different stands (2–10 plots in each stand) in terms of age, structure, and silviculture history in three replications for each stand in April and May 2020. Results showed that the amount of snow and wind damage had a wide range from 1.3% to 30.7%. Snow damage was more than three times that of wind. Snow and wind damage in the young stands were significantly more serious (p < 0.01) than in the middle-aged and old stands, and damage was significantly higher (p < 0.01) in the unthinned stands than in the thinned ones. Slenderness coefficient (Height/Diameter ratio, HD ratio) of trees resulted to be a good indicator in young and middle-aged stands, while crown form indices (relative crown length and relative crown width) were acceptable indicators in old stands for risk of snow and wind damage. Our results showed that the normal thinning (15% of basal area) decreased snow and wind damage in all the stands, while the heavy thinning (35% of basal area) reduced the snow damage, but it increased the wind one. It is possible to recommend high intensity thinning in young stands, normal thinning in middle-aged stands, and light thinning (15% of basal area) in old ones.
ISSN: 1999-4907
DOI: 10.3390/f11101034
Appears in Collections:A1. Articolo in rivista

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