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Increase in the content of nitrogenous compounds at lumber surfaces during drying and possible biological effects

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Nitrogen contents have been determined at different depths from the surface of dried pine (Pinus sylvestris) and spruce (Picea abies) lumber. The effects of factors such as time of felling, storage of the timber, and drying process for the lumber, have been studied. Part of the selected lumber was characterized by surfaces which were yellowish after drying. At such surfaces, to a depth of about 2 mm, a high accumulation of nitrogen was always found. Yellowing is enhanced in lumber from wet-stored timber but also occurs in other lumber. Some possible contributive factors are suggested. More research in this field is proposed. The nitrogen gradients in outer sapwood without a yellow surface and in inner sapwood and in heartwood were much weaker. The effect which enrichment of nitrogenous compounds at surfaces may have on timber with regard to its disposition towards moulding is discussed. Although attention is drawn to the fact that strong nutrient gradients may occur, it must be emphasised that in most lumber nutrient gradients are weak and probably without practical consequence for its susceptibility towards fungal attack.

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Boutelje, J.B. Increase in the content of nitrogenous compounds at lumber surfaces during drying and possible biological effects. Wood Sci.Technol. 24, 191–200 (1990). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00229055

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  • Nitrogen
  • Timber
  • Biological Effect
  • Contributive Factor
  • Nitrogen Content