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ŠUMARSKI LIST 7-8/2020 str. 47     <-- 47 -->        PDF

This study shows that thinning on plots was not intense enough and, to a certain extent, not consistent enough. In the case of delayed start of thinning, as in our experiment, two to four moderate (removal of strongest competitors) or high intensity (removal of all competitors) thinning are not enough to achieve satisfactory diameter increments. Differences in annual diameter increments among thinning intensities were not large, but it has nevertheless been shown that regular thinning of high intensity must be carried out and trees with highest dbh with the best vigour, quality, tendency and with a long, well-formed crown must be promoted. Traditional selection thinning should result in better growth, but also improved overall quality of the stand, to some extent, showed also from our results. If the cost of traditional selection thinning is too high, we recommend trying crop tree situational thinning, which also has a beneficial effect on collective stand stability.
This study suggests that thinnings in black alder stands should be carried out at an early stage. It is a light-demanding species that quickly loses its ability to respond to silvicultural measures. However, care should also be taken to ensure that the natural branch shedding process in the lower part of the trunk is not interrupted. The most vital trees should be selected and favoured and the intensity of thinning should be significantly higher than in this study, e.g. up to 30% of the basal area. This study suggests that the implementation of long-term silvicultural experiments could be challenging, both due to knowledge progress and socio-economic changes. However, the results of such studies provide direct insights into stand development and the tree response to silvicultural measures and should therefore be actively pursued now more than ever.
We sincerely thank the Pahernik Foundation for financially supporting this study.
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