6 research outputs found

    Site types revisited : comparison of traditional Russian and Finnish classification systems for European Boreal forests

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    doi: 10.1111/avsc.12525Questions Forest classifications are tools used in research, monitoring, and management. In Finland, the Cajanderian forest site type classification is based on the composition of understorey vegetation with the assumption that it reflects in a predictable way the site's productive value. In Russia, the Sukachevian forest classification is similarly based on understorey vegetation but also accounts for tree species, soil wetness, and paludification. Here we ask whether Cajander's and Sukachev's forest types are effectively the same in terms of species composition, site productivity, and biodiversity. Location Boreal forests on mineral soils in Finland and the Russian part of Fennoscandia. Methods We use vegetation and soil survey data to compare the Cajanderian and the Sukachevian systems in terms of the understorey community composition (that is supposed to define them), soil fertility and tree productivity (that they are expected to indicate), and biodiversity (that is of interest for conservation purposes). We create and employ class prediction models to divide Russian and Finnish sites into Cajander's and Sukachev's types, respectively, based on vegetation composition. We perform cross-comparisons between the two systems by non-metric multidimensional scaling ordination and statistical tests. Results Within both systems, the site types formed similar, meaningful gradients in terms of the studied variables. Certain site types from the two systems were largely overlapping in community composition and arranged similarly along the fertility gradient and may thus be considered comparable. Conclusions The Cajanderian and the Sukachevian systems were both developed in the European boreal zone but differ in terms of the exact rules by which site types are determined. Our results show that analogous types between the systems can be identified. These findings aid in endeavours of technology and information transfer between Finnish and Russian forests for the purposes of basic or applied ecological research and forest management.Peer reviewe

    Natural Regeneration of the Tree Stand in the Bilberry Spruce Forest—Clear-Cutting Ecotone Complex in the First Post-Logging Decade

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    Bilberry spruce forests are the most widespread forest type in the European boreal zone. Limiting the clear-cuttings size leads to fragmentation of forest cover and the appearance of large areas of ecotone complexes, composed of forest (F), a transition from forest to the cut-over site under tree canopy (FE), a transition from forest to the cut-over site beyond tree canopy (CE), and the actual clear-cut site (C). Natural regeneration of woody species (spruce, birch, rowan) in the bilberry spruce stand—clear-cut ecotone complex was studied during the first decade after logging. The effects produced by the time since cutting, forest edge aspect, and the ground cover on the emergence and growth of trees and shrubs under forest canopy and openly in the clear-cut were investigated. Estimating the amount and size of different species in the regeneration showed FE and CE width to be 8 m—roughly half the height of first-story trees. Typical forest conditions (F) feature a relatively small amount of regenerating spruce and birch. The most favorable conditions for natural regeneration of spruce in the clear-cut—mature bilberry spruce stand ecotone are at the forest edge in areas of transition both towards the forest and towards the clear-cut (FE and CE). Clear-cut areas farther from the forest edge (C) offer an advantage to regenerating birch, which grows densely and actively in this area

    Structural Features of a Post-Clear-Cutting Ecotone between 90-Year-Old Bilberry Spruce Forest and 35-Year-Old Herbs-Forbs Deciduous Stand

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    In a natural regeneration process, a community dominated by birch and aspen forms in the site 35 years after a bilberry-type spruce stand is logged down. The newly formed ecotone complex consists of four zones, each characterized by certain features of the ground vegetation and epiphytic vegetation structure. The transitional zones and the mature bilberry-type spruce forest feature a clear dominance of boreal dwarf shrubs (bilberry and cowberry). Another feature of the transitional zone is a greater role of hygrophytic mosses of the genera Polytrichum and Sphagnum. Meanwhile, the true mosses Pleurozium schreberi and Hylocomium splendens dominate under spruce forest canopy, and the moss cover in the young deciduous stand is virtually nonexistent. The structure of epiphytic vegetation depends on the habitat conditions—the surface of tree trunks in the transitional zone is better lit and drier than inside the tree stand, which results in a higher abundance of epiphytic lichens of the genus Cladonia. The deciduous–coniferous fine root biomass ratio is dependent on the tree stand structure and is unrelated to ecotone zones. Overall, studies have demonstrated that transitional zones have certain characteristic ecological and community features, which persist for a long time after tree stand removal

    Anatomical and Morphological Features of Scots Pine Heartwood Formation in Two Forest Types in the Middle Taiga Subzone

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    Currently, there is no consensus on how growing conditions affect the heartwood formation in Scots pine. Comparing the results obtained by different authors is difficult due to methodology differences and poor descriptions of the objects used. We selected two sample plots in (1) a blueberry pine forest on nutrient-rich and moist soil and (2) a lichen pine forest on nutrient-poor and dry soil and performed their detailed characterization. The sample plots were located 22 km apart in the middle taiga subzone (Karelia Republic, northwest Russia). In each sample plot, we selected five dominant trees (model trees), from which we took cores at different trunk heights (0.3, 1.5, 4.5, 7.5 and 10.5 m). The cores were treated with 2,6-dichlorophenolindophenol to identify the heartwood zone. Additionally, samples were taken to study the structural features of the transition zone between sapwood and heartwood. In both forest types, the number of heartwood rings depended on the cambium age, and the patterns of parenchyma cell death did not differ in the transition zone. These facts point to a predominantly internal regulation of the heartwood formation in Scots pine. The heartwood radius and its proportion on the cross-sections were significantly higher in the blueberry pine forest than in the lichen pine forest, despite the relative values of the annual ring width. Further research is needed to develop successful Scots pine heartwood width models under a wide range of conditions

    Anatomical and Morphological Features of Scots Pine Heartwood Formation in Two Forest Types in the Middle Taiga Subzone

    No full text
    Currently, there is no consensus on how growing conditions affect the heartwood formation in Scots pine. Comparing the results obtained by different authors is difficult due to methodology differences and poor descriptions of the objects used. We selected two sample plots in (1) a blueberry pine forest on nutrient-rich and moist soil and (2) a lichen pine forest on nutrient-poor and dry soil and performed their detailed characterization. The sample plots were located 22 km apart in the middle taiga subzone (Karelia Republic, northwest Russia). In each sample plot, we selected five dominant trees (model trees), from which we took cores at different trunk heights (0.3, 1.5, 4.5, 7.5 and 10.5 m). The cores were treated with 2,6-dichlorophenolindophenol to identify the heartwood zone. Additionally, samples were taken to study the structural features of the transition zone between sapwood and heartwood. In both forest types, the number of heartwood rings depended on the cambium age, and the patterns of parenchyma cell death did not differ in the transition zone. These facts point to a predominantly internal regulation of the heartwood formation in Scots pine. The heartwood radius and its proportion on the cross-sections were significantly higher in the blueberry pine forest than in the lichen pine forest, despite the relative values of the annual ring width. Further research is needed to develop successful Scots pine heartwood width models under a wide range of conditions
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