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New Forests

, Volume 44, Issue 4, pp 613–628 | Cite as

Comparative mast seed production in unmanaged and shelterwood white pine (Pinus strobus L.) stands in central Ontario

  • William C. Parker
  • Thomas L. Noland
  • Andrée E. Morneault
Article

Abstract

The effect of the seed cut of the uniform shelterwood silvicultural system on white pine seed production, seed characteristics, and seed viability during 2 mast seeding events was examined in operationally harvested second growth, white pine-dominated forest stands in central Ontario. Seed traps placed along transects in unmanaged and shelterwood stands in each of 3 blocks were used to monitor seed production in 2000 and 2006 (4 and 10 years after harvesting). During these 2 mast seed years between 386,000 and 2,730,600 seed ha−1 were produced among study stands. Total seed production expressed on a per hectare and unit pine basal area basis did not differ by harvest treatment or among blocks in either year. Variability in seed production among stands was primarily due to differences in stand structure, with seed production positively related to white pine basal area. Seed characteristics were largely similar between harvested and unmanaged stands and between seed years. Seed viability was relatively high in both years, with seed from shelterwoods germinating slightly slower than those from unmanaged stands. Seed quality, as estimated by laboratory germination performance, was higher in 2006 than 2000, likely due to improved seed development and maturation in the warmer, wetter growing season of 2006. Our results suggest that the seed cut of the uniform shelterwood system applied to second growth white pine stands is unlikely to adversely affect white pine seed production, seed quality, or potential for natural regeneration during mast seeding events.

Keywords

Germination Mast seeding Seed production Seed quality Uniform shelterwood 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We acknowledge the following individuals for their contributions to this study. Dianne Othmer, Megan Smith and Brian Brown (OMNR) provided valuable field and lab assistance. John McLeod, Hillary Black (OMNR’s Summer Experience Program), and Jane Nicholson (Natural Resources Canada Science and Technology Internship Program) performed laboratory germination tests. The Canadian Forestry Service, Great Lakes Forestry Centre provided use of the X-ray machine. Dr. Mahadev Sharma (OMNR) provided advice on statistical analyses and Lisa Buse (OMNR) provided editorial assistance. We thank two anonymous reviewers for their many valuable suggestions on an earlier version of this report.

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Copyright information

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • William C. Parker
    • 1
  • Thomas L. Noland
    • 1
  • Andrée E. Morneault
    • 2
  1. 1.Ontario Forest Research InstituteOntario Ministry of Natural ResourcesSault Ste. MarieCanada
  2. 2.Forest Research and Development SectionOntario Ministry of Natural ResourcesNorth BayCanada

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