New Forests

, Volume 41, Issue 1, pp 41–53 | Cite as

A stand dynamic model for red pine plantations with different initial densities

  • Shusheng Li
  • Qingyu Hao
  • Edwin Swift
  • Charles P.-A. Bourque
  • Fan-Rui Meng


A stand dynamic model was developed to predict the growth response in even-aged forest plantations of different initial planting densities. The model is based on the integration of three subcomponents: height growth, self-thinning, and diameter increment. The integrated model uses the height of dominant trees to simulate stand response to site quality and internal growth potential. An extended self-thinning submodel is used to simulate mortality in stands due to crowding and inter-tree competition. A diameter increment submodel is used to link the height growth and self-thinning submodels. The height growth submodel is based on an application of the “Pipe Model” theory. The three-parameter self-thinning submodel is developed from an extended self-thinning law that captures self-thinning in stands before they attain full stocking. The diameter increment model is based on the assumption that diameter increment is related to height growth and available growing space described by stand density. The integrated model is applied to data collected from a 45-year-old red pine (Pinus resinosa Ait.) plantation subsectioned with different initial planting densities. For the data used, only two parameters were required to capture 99% of measured variation in height growth. Additional data from sites with different planting intensities are required to formulate a more generalized height growth model. The slope of the linear self-thinning limit for red pine is approximately −1.5. Model predictions are consistent with field measurements.


Density index Growth model Height growth Self-thinning Site index 



We would like to thank Mr. S. D’Eon of the Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Wood Fibre Centre for providing the red pine data sets from spacing trials conducted at the Petawawa Research Forest. We are also indebted to Dr. W. Stiell for his foresight and dedication in establishing the original study. We are equally grateful to Mr. C. Roberson, Mr. G. Brand, and Mr. A. Berry for their participation in the project either by establishing research plots or in collecting tree measurements: without such long-term projects and associated data sets, development of stand dynamic models, as presented here, would not be possible.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shusheng Li
    • 1
  • Qingyu Hao
    • 2
  • Edwin Swift
    • 3
  • Charles P.-A. Bourque
    • 4
  • Fan-Rui Meng
    • 4
  1. 1.School of ForestryNortheast Forestry UniversityHarbinPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.School of Life ScienceHainan Normal UniversityHaikouPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Natural Resources CanadaCanadian Forest Service, Canadian Wood Fibre CentreFrederictonCanada
  4. 4.Faculty of Forestry and Environmental ManagementUniversity of New BrunswickFrederictonCanada

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