Current issue: 55(1)
Under compilation: 55(2)
Although crop tree release (CTR) in hardwood stands is an accepted variant of precommercial thinning (PCT), the lack of an affordable and feasible method hinders its adoption. CTR implies selecting between 150 and 500 trees ha–1 when trees are between 7 and 12 m high and cutting only stems competing with the target crop trees. We performed a field trial of a CTR variant of PCT in a 27.8 ha hardwood stand using a backpack mounted chain saw. A detailed time study was performed to document the trial over 13 days. Compared to conventional PCT performed earlier in the life of a stand, precommercial crop tree release required cutting larger stems, which showed to be feasible and productive using a backpack mounted chain saw. Productivity varied between 0.22 to 0.47 ha h–1 during the trial, Although productivity could vary with stand characteristics and worker, this proof of concept trial demonstrates some of the potential uses that this new saw configuration offers and sets the basis for an eventual larger scale deployment of this treatment.