Current issue: 53(2)

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Articles containing the keyword 'cleaning'.

Category: Research article

article id 1514, category Research article
Heidi Hallongren, Ville Kankaanhuhta, Mikael Kukkonen. (2016). Cleaning Scots pine seedling stands with mechanical uprooters – a work quality comparison of two related devices. Silva Fennica vol. 50 no. 3 article id 1514. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.1514
Highlights: The productivity of the narrower modified device was significantly better than the wider original device; Work quality did not differ significantly between devices when stand characteristics, regeneration success and pre-existing damage were taken into account; Results indicate that mechanical uprooting devices may be further developed to a cost-effective alternative to motor-manual techniques for the early cleaning of direct seeded commercial Scots pine stands.

Commercial forests require early cleaning to ensure the unhindered and uniform growth of crop trees. In order to be cost effective, non-crop vegetation should be uprooted to prevent their recovery. Performing this work manually is a labour-intensive task but it can be done mechanically. We evaluated the efficiency of two uprooting devices in direct seeded Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) stands ca. 1 m tall. Productivity and quality of the uprooting work was investigated across eight stands and ca. 160 sample plots in northern Karelia, eastern Finland. Time consumption of the uprooters was analyzed through a linear regression model and the work quality through a multilevel multivariate model in terms of the number of individual Scots pine seedlings, processing units (i.e., a bunch of seedlings to be harvested in the future) and broadleaves. The productivity of the narrower modified device was significantly better in terms of time consumption than the wider original device. Work quality did not differ significantly between devices when stand characteristics, regeneration success and pre-existing damage were taken into account. Results indicate that mechanical uprooting devices may be further developed to a cost-effective alternative to motor-manual techniques for the early cleaning of direct seeded commercial Scots pine stands.

  • Hallongren, Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke), Management and Production of Renewable Resources, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: heidi.hallongren@luke.fi (email)
  • Kankaanhuhta, Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke), Management and Production of Renewable Resources, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: ville.kankaanhuhta@luke.fi
  • Kukkonen, University of Eastern Finland, School of Forest Sciences. P.O. Box 111, FI-80101 Joensuu, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: mikaelkukkonen@hotmail.com
article id 1302, category Research article
Nils Fahlvik, Per Magnus Ekö, Nils Petersson. (2015). Effects of precommercial thinning strategies on stand structure and growth in a mixed even-aged stand of Scots pine, Norway spruce and birch in southern Sweden. Silva Fennica vol. 49 no. 3 article id 1302. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.1302
Highlights: Precommercial thinning (PCT) was a useful tool to influence the stand structure in accordance to silvicultural goals; PCT had a great impact on tree species composition; The seemingly great potential to influence the structure of a heterogeneous, mixed stand was restrained by natural settings and unconditional considerations at PCT (e.g. tree vitality, stem quality, regular spacing).
Four different management strategies were applied to a young mixed stand of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.), Norway spruce (Pices abies (L.) Karst.) and birch (Betula pendula Roth and Betula pubescens Ehrh.) in southern Sweden. All strategies included an initial precommercial thinning to ca. 2400 stems ha–1. The different aims were: (i) a conifer-dominated stand with focus on high productivity; (ii) a conifer-dominated stand with high quality timber; (iii) keeping a stem-wise species mixture; (iv) a mosaic-wise species mixture. Stem selection according to the different strategies were simulated with a starting point from plots with a 5 m radius. All strategies were applied to all of the plots. A growth simulator was used to simulate the stand development up to final felling. This study illustrates the possibilities for influencing the structure of a mixed stand through precommercial thinning. The study also illustrates the long-term effects on stand structure and volume yield by consequently applying a management strategy from precommercial thinning until final felling. Precommercial thinning was found to be a useful tool to influence the stand structure in accordance to the aims set. However, the opportunities for influencing the stand by precommercial thinning were restricted by natural settings and unconditional considerations (e.g. tree vitality, stem quality, regular spacing), beyond what could be judged from stand average data. The stem volume production during a rotation was 6% lower for (iii) and (iv) compared to (i) and (ii), mainly due to a greater proportion of birch in the former strategies.
  • Fahlvik, Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 49, SE-230 53 Alnarp, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: nils.fahlvik@slu.se (email)
  • Ekö, Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 49, SE-230 53 Alnarp, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: per.magnus.eko@slu.se
  • Petersson, StoraEnso Skog AB, Åsgatan 22, SE-791 80 Falun, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: nils.petersson@storaenso.com
article id 982, category Research article
Karri Uotila, Timo Saksa, Juho Rantala, Nuutti Kiljunen. (2014). Labour consumption models applied to motor-manual pre-commercial thinning in Finland. Silva Fennica vol. 48 no. 2 article id 982. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.982
Highlights: When a young stand grows and gets older, the work time needed to make pre-commercial thinning increases. The stands of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.), Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and hardwoods (Betula spp.) required an additional 8.2%, 5.2%, and 3.3% work-time per year, respectively.
Labour models were developed to estimate the time required to Pre-Commercially Thin (PCT) with a clearing saw 4- to 20-year-old stands of the main commercial tree species in Finland. Labour (i.e., work-time consumption) was estimated from the density and stem diameter of the removal of 448 stands via an existing work productivity function. The removal based estimator attained was used as the basis for a priori mixed linear regression models. The main finding was that when a young stand grows and gets older, the work time needed to make a PCT increases. The stands of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.), Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and hardwoods (Betula spp.) required an additional 8.2%, 5.2%, and 3.3% work-time per year, respectively. Site fertility also played a role in that the most fertile site (mesic OMT) had an estimated labour requirement 114% higher than that for dryish VT. We also note that, per unit area, small stands require less labour than large ones and soil preparation method had a minor effect on the labour estimate. The stands which had previously gone through PCT were separately analysed. In those stands, the only significant variable concerning the labour estimate was age. The a priori models described here can help foresters to develop economic management programmes and issue quotes for forestry services.
  • Uotila, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: karri.uotila@metla.fi (email)
  • Saksa, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: timo.saksa@metla.fi
  • Rantala, Metsä Group, Lielahdenkatu 10, FI-33400 Tampere, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: juho.rantala@metsagroup.com
  • Kiljunen, Metsähallitus, Asemakatu 7, FI-70107 Kuopio, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: nuutti.kiljunen@metsa.fi
article id 919, category Research article
Karri Uotila, Juho Rantala, Timo Saksa. (2012). Estimating the need for early cleaning in Norway spruce plantations in Finland. Silva Fennica vol. 46 no. 5 article id 919. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.919
Effective management of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) plantations requires detailed information on stand development, which is costly to measure. However, estimating the need for early stand management from site attributes that persists stabile after ones measured, may provide an inexpensive alternative. This study compared hardwood competition in spruce plantations of varying ages and tested the usability of this information in estimating the need for early cleaning. The data included 197 spruce plantations (4–7 years old) inventoried in southern Finland in 2007. The level (Low, Substantial, High) of need for early cleaning was subjectively determined by contrasting location and size of competing hardwoods to a conifer crop tree. Then the stage of the need for early cleaning was modelled according to site and stand attributes. Nearly 60% of the conifer crop trees in the plantations were subjectively judged to require early cleaning (Substantial 37.2%, High 21.2%), but only 10 per cent of the evaluated area was cleaned. Need for cleaning was intense on peatlands or damp soils, whereas it was mild on unprepared soils or cleaned sites. Traditional site characteristics used in forest management planning can be useful for recognising the peripheral cases, where need for cleaning is probably high or low. However, on a typical mineral soil plantation (uncleaned, soil prepared) the model indicates the differences in the need for early cleaning weakly. The need for early cleaning was already high in 4-year-old plantations, why stand age did not have significant effect on development of the need. Thus, the timing of an operation can not be predicted with the model. Nonetheless, early cleaning very likely opens growth space of crop trees in a 4–7-year-old spruce plantation. Therefore, from an aspect of crop growth, an uncleaned Norway spruce plantation in this age group is quite consistently worth cleaning.
  • Uotila, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: karri.uotila@metla.fi (email)
  • Rantala, Metsä Group, Tampere, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: juho.rantala@metsagroup.com
  • Saksa, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: timo.saksa@metla.fi
article id 919, category Research article
Karri Uotila, Juho Rantala, Timo Saksa. (2012). Estimating the need for early cleaning in Norway spruce plantations in Finland. Silva Fennica vol. 46 no. 5 article id 919. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.919
Effective management of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) plantations requires detailed information on stand development, which is costly to measure. However, estimating the need for early stand management from site attributes that persists stabile after ones measured, may provide an inexpensive alternative. This study compared hardwood competition in spruce plantations of varying ages and tested the usability of this information in estimating the need for early cleaning. The data included 197 spruce plantations (4–7 years old) inventoried in southern Finland in 2007. The level (Low, Substantial, High) of need for early cleaning was subjectively determined by contrasting location and size of competing hardwoods to a conifer crop tree. Then the stage of the need for early cleaning was modelled according to site and stand attributes. Nearly 60% of the conifer crop trees in the plantations were subjectively judged to require early cleaning (Substantial 37.2%, High 21.2%), but only 10 per cent of the evaluated area was cleaned. Need for cleaning was intense on peatlands or damp soils, whereas it was mild on unprepared soils or cleaned sites. Traditional site characteristics used in forest management planning can be useful for recognising the peripheral cases, where need for cleaning is probably high or low. However, on a typical mineral soil plantation (uncleaned, soil prepared) the model indicates the differences in the need for early cleaning weakly. The need for early cleaning was already high in 4-year-old plantations, why stand age did not have significant effect on development of the need. Thus, the timing of an operation can not be predicted with the model. Nonetheless, early cleaning very likely opens growth space of crop trees in a 4–7-year-old spruce plantation. Therefore, from an aspect of crop growth, an uncleaned Norway spruce plantation in this age group is quite consistently worth cleaning.
  • Uotila, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: karri.uotila@metla.fi (email)
  • Rantala, Metsä Group, Tampere, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: juho.rantala@metsagroup.com
  • Saksa, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki Unit, Juntintie 154, FI-77600 Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: timo.saksa@metla.fi
article id 146, category Research article
Karri Uotila, Juho Rantala, Timo Saksa, Pertti Harstela. (2010). Effect of soil preparation method on economic result of Norway spruce regeneration chain. Silva Fennica vol. 44 no. 3 article id 146. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.146
Economic result of forest regeneration chains, based either on spot mounding or on disc trenching and planting of Norway spruce (Picea abies [L.] Karst.) seedlings, were clarified and compared to each other. First, effects of soil preparation method on early development of Norway spruce stands were measured from field experiments. Second, the effects of soil preparation method on stand level management programs were modelled. The modelling was based on growth simulation and investment calculations. The soil preparation methods substantially affected early development of a stand. The density of the removed trees in early cleaning was 56% higher on the disc-trenched area compared to the spot-mounded area. The difference was especially high (120%), close by (< 25 cm) the remained spruce seedlings. There was also a difference between the methods in the growth of crop spruces; at biological age of 8 years, the mean height of spruce was 110 cm on the spot-mounded area and 68 cm on the disc-trenched area. The differences led to divergent management programs between the areas. The disc-trenched area needed three young stand management operations whereas two was enough at the spot-mounded area. Although disc trenching is a less expensive method than spot mounding, the total management costs were higher in disc trenching than in spot mounding. Furthermore, incomes from the first commercial thinning were higher when regeneration based on spot mounding. At the interest rate of 3%, the investment in spot mounding had 329 EUR ha–1 higher net present value than the investment in disc trenching.
  • Uotila, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail: karri.uotila@metla.fi (email)
  • Rantala, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Saksa, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Harstela, Finnish Forest Research Institute, Suonenjoki, Finland ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 343, category Research article
Karin Vestlund, Tomas Nordfjell, Lars Eliasson, Anders Karlsson. (2006). A decision support system for selective cleaning. Silva Fennica vol. 40 no. 2 article id 343. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.343
Cleaning (pre-commercial thinning) costs have increased relative to logging and regeneration costs, creating a desire for rationalisation. Cleaning with robots may be a solution, but automating stem selections requires a decision support system (DSS) capable of rendering acceptable results. The aims were to develop a DSS for automation of individual stem selections in practical cleaning, and to test, using simulations, if it renders acceptable results. Data on 17 young forest stands were used to develop a DSS that selects stems by species, position (including distance and density parameters), diameter, and damage. Six simulations were run, following the DSS, with different target settings for density, percentage of deciduous stems and minimum distance between stems. The results depend on the initial state of the stands, but generally met the requested targets in an acceptable way. On average, the density results deviated by –20% to +6% from the target values, the amount of deciduous stems shifted towards the target values, and the proportion of stems with defined damaged decreased from initially 14–90% to 4–13%. The mean diameter at breast height increased and the minimum allowed distance between stems was never violated. The simulation results indicate that the DSS is operational. However, for implementation in robotics a crucial problem is to automatically perceive the selected attributes, so additional simulations with erroneous data were run. Correct measurements of diameters are less crucial than to find the majority of the trees and the majority of trees with damages.
  • Vestlund, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, P.O. Box 7060, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: karin.vestlund@ssko.slu.se (email)
  • Nordfjell, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Forest Resource Management and Geomatics, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Eliasson, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Karlsson, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 363, category Research article
Karin Vestlund, Tomas Nordfjell, Lars Eliasson. (2005). Comparison of human and computer-based selective cleaning. Silva Fennica vol. 39 no. 4 article id 363. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.363
In silvicultural tending operations like cleaning (pre-commercial thinning), the results are irreversible, so it is important for the decisions to be consistent with the aims for the stand. To enable operational automatic stem selections, a decision support system (DSS) is needed. A previously presented DSS seems to render acceptable cleaning results, but needs further analysis. The aims of the study were to compare the cleaning results of experienced cleaners and DSS simulations when “similar” instructions were given, and to assess the usefulness and robustness of the DSS. Twelve experienced cleaners were engaged to “clean” (mark main stems) six areas; each cleaner “cleaned” two areas. The DSS was used to generate two computer-based cleanings (simulations) of these areas. Four laymen also “cleaned” one of the areas following the DSS. The density results were significantly affected by the areas’ location, whereas the proportions of deciduous stems and damaged stems were significantly affected by both the areas’ location and method, i.e. manual “cleaning” and general or adjusted simulation. The study showed that the DSS can be adjusted so that the results are comparable with the cleaners’ results. Thus, the DSS seems to be useful and flexible. The laymen’s results were close to the results of the “general” simulation, implying that the DSS is robust and could be used as a training tool for inexperienced cleaners. The DSS was also acceptable on a single-tree level, as more than 80% of the main-stems selected in the simulations were also selected by at least one cleaner.
  • Vestlund, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, P.O. Box 7060, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: karin.vestlund@ssko.slu.se (email)
  • Nordfjell, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Eliasson, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Research note

article id 379, category Research note
Daniel Ligné, Lars Eliasson, Tomas Nordfjell. (2005). Time consumption and damage to the remaining stock in mechanised and motor manual pre-commercial thinning. Silva Fennica vol. 39 no. 3 article id 379. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.379
Selective pre-commercial thinning (PCT) is usually carried out by workers with a brush saw in order to increase the growth of the potential crop trees (main stems) through removal of competing trees. In the last decade relative PCT costs have increased, partly because stands are denser and have higher trees when treated, which has led to new interest for mechanised PCT. The objective was to compare mechanised and motor manual PCT regarding productivity and damage to remaining main stems. Time consumption for, and damage after, mechanised and motor manual PCT were studied on 50 plots per treatment in mixed pine birch stands with an initial stand density exceeding 4500 stems ha–1. In the present study productivity was influenced by stand density, stand height and the quota between height and diameter. Irrespectively of these factors, mechanised PCT was 0.74 hours ha–1 slower than motor manual PCT. Motor manual PCT of the average stand (average height 3.69 m, 10 816 stems ha–1) took 5.06 effective hours. In average 2475 and 2805 main stems ha–1 were left after the mechanised and motor manual treatments, respectively, whereof 1.3 and 2.1% were damaged by the treatments. The results show that efficiency in motor manual PCT has increased in dense and tall stands compared to older studies. Motor manual PCT was more time effective than mechanised PCT, and thereby also even more cost-effective. However, the potential for technical and methodological development of mechanised PCT is probably larger than for motor manual PCT.
  • Ligné, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Eliasson, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail: lars.eliasson@norraskogsagarna.se (email)
  • Nordfjell, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Silviculture, SE-901 83 Umeå, Sweden ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Article

article id 4675, category Article
Gustav Sirén. (1957). Kokemuksia raivaussahan käytöstä metsänhoitotöissä. Silva Fennica no. 93 article id 4675. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a9121
English title: Experiences of brush cutters in silviculture.

The aim of the study was to compare the newly introduced brush cutter to ordinary hand tools in clearing of cutting areas and thinning young birch (Betula sp.) and Scots pine (Pinus Sylvestris L.) stands. Working with a prototype of the brush cutter, Brushmaster, reduced the total working time by 15-20% compared to bush knife and axe, in spite of the cutter’s weight. At rainy weather the advantage of Brushmaster dissapeared because of clogging of the cutter’s air filter. The prototype proved to be more effective when clearing a cutting area, and hand tools seemed to be faster if damage to the remaining trees have to be avoided.

In addition, eight either lighter or more effective motor saws or brush cutters were compared mutually, and the effect of motor effect, weight, handiness, arrangement of suspenders and handles is discussed. With these improved types of the cutter it was possible to shorten the total working time in thinning of stands (mostly clearing of young stands) to 30-40% of the total working time compared to hand tools. The most modern saws appeared to be best adapted in clearing cutting areas.

The article includes an abstract in English.

  • Sirén, ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 4502, category Article
V. K. Ahola. (1937). Havaintoja viimeaikaisista metsänhoitotöistä valtionmetsissä. Silva Fennica no. 39 article id 4502. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a13912
English title: Observations on forest management work in state forests.

The issue 39 of Silva Fennica includes presentations held in professional development courses in 1935 that were arranged for foresters working in public administration. The presentations focus on practical issues in forest management and administration, especially in regional level.

This presentation describes the forest management work in the state forests.

  • Ahola, ORCID ID:E-mail:

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