European Journal of Forest Research

, Volume 131, Issue 3, pp 683–691 | Cite as

Norway spruce (Picea abies L.) regeneration and growth of understory trees under single-tree selection silviculture in Finland

Original Paper


This study presents empirical data on regeneration and growth of understory trees and constructs simple models for predicting these characteristics at various stand structure and post-thinning standing volume levels. The field experiment was established on a grass/herb mineral soil site in central Finland. Regeneration and understory tree growth data were collected from 24 Norway spruce (Picea abies L.)-dominated mixed substands. Seedlings with heights from 5 to 130 cm were measured in 1996 and 2007. In addition, the annual height growth of Norway spruce seedlings was measured in 2007. The spatial pattern of the substands varied from clustered to regular with a decreasing standing volume. Stand complexity was uniform across the range of standing volume. In the 2007 survey, the amount of Norway spruce regeneration increased from approximately 400 to 5,000 seedlings ha−1 when the post-thinning standing volume level was reduced from 230 to 90 m3 ha−1, respectively. Nearly no seedlings were found when the standing volume was over 300 m3 ha−1. The annual diameter increment in Norway spruce understory (dbh < 5 cm) trees decreased, on the average, from 2.3 to 0.3 mm with an increase in the standing volume level from 90 to 340 m3 ha−1, respectively; their height growth showed also a decreasing trend when the standing volume increased. The results indicated that a post-thinning standing volume lower than 150 m3 ha−1 with a regular overstory spatial structure provides a suitable environment for regeneration and growth of Norway spruce understory trees in the studied forest type.


Seedling growth Overstory spatial pattern Stand structure Understory 


  1. Andreassen K (1994) Bledning og bledningsskogen—en litteraturstudie. Aktuelt fra Skogforsk 2 (In Norwegian)Google Scholar
  2. Anon (2006) SPSS for Windows Rel. 15.0.1. SPSS Inc, ChicagoGoogle Scholar
  3. Barbier S, Gosselin F, Balandier P (2008) Influence of tree species on understory vegetation diversity and mechanisms involved—A critical review for temperate and boreal forests. For Ecol Manag 245:1–15CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Chrimes D, Nilson K (2005) Overstorey density influence on the height of Picea abies regeneration in northern Sweden. Forestry 78:433–442CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Clark PJ, Evans FC (1954) Distance to nearest neighbour as a measure of spatial relationships in populations. Ecology 35:445–453CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Eerikäinen K, Miina J, Valkonen S (2007) Models for the regeneration establishment and the development of established seedlings in uneven-sized, Norway spruce dominated forest stands of southern Finland. For Ecol Manag 242:444–461CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Goldberg DE (1990) Components of ressource competition in plant communities. In: Grace J, Tilman D (eds) Perspectives on plant competition. Academic, San Diego, pp 27–49Google Scholar
  8. Golser M, Hasenauer H (1997) Predicting juvenile tree height growth in uneven-aged mixed species stands in Austria. For Ecol Manag 97:133–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Granhus A, Fjeld D (2001) Spatial distribution of injuries to Norway spruce advance growth after selection harvesting. Can J For Res 31:1903–1913CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Grassi G, Minotta G, Tonon G, Bagnaresi U (2004) Dynamics of Norway spruce and silver fir natural regeneration in a mixed stand under uneven-sized management. Can J For Res 34:141–149CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hasenauer H, Kindermann G (2002) Methods for assessing regeneration establishment and height growth in uneven-aged mixed species stands. Forestry 75:385–394CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Heinonen J (1994) Koealojen puu- ja puustotunnusten laskentaohjelma KPL Käyttöohje. Metsäntutkimuslaitoksen tiedonantoja 504 Finnish Forest Research Institute, Helsinki (In Finnish)Google Scholar
  13. Kolström T (1993) Modelling the development of an uneven-aged stand of Picea abies. Scand J For Res 8:373–383CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Lähde E (1992) Natural regeneration of all-sized spruce-dominated stands treated by single tree selection. In: Hagner M (ed) Silvicultural alternatives. Department of Silviculture, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Umeå, pp 117–123Google Scholar
  15. Lähde E, Laiho O, Norokorpi Y, Saksa T (1991) The structure of advanced virgin forests in Finland. Scand J For Res 6:527–537CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lähde E, Laiho O, Lin CJ (2010) Silvicultural alternatives in an uneven-sized forest dominated by Picea abies. J For Res 15:14–20CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Lundqvist L, Fridman E (1996) Influence of local stand basal area on density and growth of regeneration in uneven-sized Picea abies stands. Scand J For Res 11:364–369CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Lundqvist L, Nilson K (2007) Regeneration dynamics in an uneven-sized virgin Norway spruce forest in northern Sweden. Scand J For Res 22:304–309CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Mason B, Kerr G, Simpson J (1999) What is continuous cover forestry? Forestry commission information note 29 Forestry Commission, EdinburghGoogle Scholar
  20. McElhinny C, Gibbons P, Brack C, Bauhus J (2005) Forest and woodland stand structural complexity: its definition and measurement. For Ecol Manag 218:1–24CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (2011) Metsänkäsittelymenetelmien monipuolistaminen. MMM:n julkaisuja 1/2011 Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Helsinli, Finland (In Finnish)Google Scholar
  22. Nilsen P (1988) Selective cutting in mountain spruce forest—Regeneration and production after earlier cuttings. Norsk Institutt for Skogsforskning, NorwayGoogle Scholar
  23. Nilsson N-E, Östlin E (1961) Riksskogstaxeringen 1938–1952 (Forest inventory 1938–1952). Avdelningen för skogstaxering Rapporter 2 Statens skogsforskningsinstitut, Stockholm (In Swedish)Google Scholar
  24. O’Hara KL (2002) The historical development of uneven-aged silviculture in North America. Forestry 75:339–346CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Pielou EC (1977) Mathematical ecology. Wiley, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  26. Pommerening A (2002) Approaches to quantifying forest structures. Forestry 75:305–324CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Pommerening A, Murphy ST (2004) A review of the history, definitions and methods of continuous cover forestry with special attention to afforestation and restocking. Forestry 77:27–44CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Rouvinen S, Kuuluvainen T (2005) Tree diameter distributions in natural and managed old Pinus sylvestris-dominated forests. For Ecol Manag 208:45–61CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Sarvas R (1944) Tukkipuun harsintojen vaikutus Etelä-Suomen yksityismetsiin. Communicationes Instituti Forestalis Fenniae 33:1–268 (In Finnish)Google Scholar
  30. Schütz J-Ph (2002) Silvicultural tools to develop irregular and diverse forest structures. Forestry 75:329–337CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Siiskonen H (2007) The conflict between traditional and scientific forest management in the 20th century Finland. For Ecol Manag 249:125–133CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Smith DM, Larson BC, Kelty MJ, Ashton PMS (1997) The practice of silviculture: applied forest ecology, 9th edn. Wiley, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  33. Stancioiu PT, O’Hara KL (2006) Regeneration growth in different light environments of mixed species, multiaged, mountainous forests of Romania. Eur J For Res 125:151–162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Valkonen S, Maguire D (2005) Relationship between seedbed properties and the emergence of spruce germinants in recently cut Norway spruce selection stands in Southern Finland. For Ecol Manag 210:255–266CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Wagner S, Madsen P, Ammer C (2009) Evaluation of different approaches for modelling individual tree seedling height growth. Trees 23:701–715Google Scholar
  36. Wästerlund I (1988) Damages and growth effects after selective mechanical cleaning. Scand J For Res 3:259–272CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Zackrisson O, Nilsson MC, Steijlen I, Hörnberg G (1995) Regeneration pulses and climate-vegetation interactions in non-pyrogenic boreal Scots pine stands. J Ecol 83:1–15CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Mekrijärvi Research StationUniversity of Eastern FinlandIlomantsiFinland
  2. 2.Finnish Forest Research Institute, Parkano Research UnitParkanoFinland
  3. 3.Finnish Forest Research Institute, Vantaa Research UnitVantaaFinland

Personalised recommendations