Category: Research article
article id 10369, category Research article
Effects of spot mounding and inverting on growth of conifers, exposed mineral soil and natural birch regeneration. Silva Fennica vol. 54 no. 5 article id 10369. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.10369
Highlights: There were 21% fewer naturally regenerated birches ha–1 in inverted areas (22 951) compared to spot mounded areas (29 086); Spot mounding exposed slightly, but not statistically significantly, larger area of mineral soil than inverting; There was no difference in seedling mortality or growth between the site preparation methods.
In Nordic forests, consistent evidence about better seedling survival rate and increased growth due to site preparation have been obtained in numerous studies. Proper site preparation method can reduce costs of the whole regeneration chain through its effects on survival of planted seedlings, abundance of natural regeneration and competition in early stand development. This study compared the natural regeneration of birches (silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) and downy birch (B. pubescens Ehrh.)), amount of exposed mineral soil, and growth of planted seedlings between spot mounding and inverting site preparation methods. Present study was conducted in eight forest stands established in 2012 or 2015. Even though difference was not statistically significant, inverting exposed less mineral soil than spot mounding and thus reduced the natural regeneration of birch seedlings by 6135 seedlings ha–1 compared to spot mounding. However, the variation between regeneration areas was remarkable. There was no difference in seedling mortality or growth between the site preparation methods. In order to achieve high growth of conifers, moderate amount of exposed mineral soil and thus less naturally regenerated birch, inverting should be favored over spot mounding.
article id 10068, category Research article
Classifying soil stoniness based on the excavator boom vibration data in mounding operations. Silva Fennica vol. 53 no. 2 article id 10068. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.10068
Highlights: An excavator was equipped with an inertial measurement unit for taking automatic measurements of soil stoniness during mounding work; Supervised machine-learning classifiers were trained utilizing both the automatically measured data and manual stoniness measurements; The class prediction for the soil stoniness achieved an accuracy of 70% when assigned to constant grid cells.
The stoniness index of forest soil describes the stone content in the upper soil layer at depths of 20–30 centimeters. This index is not available in any existing map databases, and traditional measurements for the stoniness of the soil have always necessitated laborious soil-penetration methods. Knowledge of the stone content of a forest site could be of use in a variety of forestry operations. This paper presents a novel approach to obtaining automatic measurements of soil stoniness during an excavator-based mounding operation. The excavator was equipped with only a low-cost inertial measurement unit and a satellite navigation receiver. Using the data from these sensors and manually conducted soil stoniness measurements, supervised machine learning methods were utilized to build a model that is capable of predicting the stoniness class of a given mounding location. This study compares different classifiers and feature selection methods to find the most promising solution for this learning problem. The discussion includes a proposition for a meaningful measurement resolution of the soil’s stoniness, and a practical method for evaluating the variability of the stone content of the soil. The results indicate that it is possible to predict the soil stoniness class with 70% accuracy using only the inertial and location measurements.
article id 1386, category Research article
Simulated continuous mounding improvements through ideal machine vision and control. Silva Fennica vol. 50 no. 2 article id 1386. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.1386
Highlights: Different strategies for how to utilise machine vision to streamline the mounding head movements were developed and evaluated; The theoretical minimum rate of encountered obstacles while utilising machine vision in continuous mounding is presented, provided that an optimal continuous mounding has been performed; The needed minimum resolution of a machine vision system at work on a clearcut area was found.
To promote the growth and survival of regenerated forests, site preparation prior to tree planting on clearcuts is necessary. This is often performed with scarifiers, either through trenching or mounding. Mounding is generally considered better in a plant survival perspective but is inefficient on obstacle-rich clearcuts. By utilising machine vision through e.g. remote sensing methods, new strategies can enable efficient mound positioning. In this paper, three realistic strategies utilizing ideal clearcut object identification through machine vision have been developed that can be used for more efficient mounding. The results show that mounding efficiency can be significantly improved with a new mound positioning strategy that employs ideal object identification, especially on obstacle-rich clearcuts.
article id 893, category Research article
Soil preparation method affects outplanting success of Norway spruce container seedlings on till soils susceptible to frost heave. Silva Fennica vol. 47 no. 1 article id 893. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.893
Soil preparation is a common practice that precedes outplanting of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) in Finland as it enhances the survival and early growth of seedlings. Mounding in particular has become more common with Norway spruce planting in recent years. However, on fine-grained soils, the postplanting performance of seedlings has been poorer than on coarser soils even with mounding. This study examined the effects of different soil preparation treatments (spot and ditch mounding with varying mound height, inverting, unprepared control with or without a herbicide) on the postplanting performance of Norway spruce container seedlings on till soil susceptible to frost heave in two outplanting forest sites in central Finland. The results indicate higher soil temperature and lower soil water content especially in the highest mounds. Mounds, however, subsided gradually during the study years. Seedling mortality was higher and the proportion of vigorous seedlings was lower in the unprepared treatments, mainly due to increased pine weevil (Hylobius abietis L.) damage. Frost heave was present mainly on ditch mounded and inverted spots. Glyphosate herbicide treatment showed no benefit compared to the untreated control in two years. Consequently, seedling damage and conditions in the planting spots were reflected in seedling growth which was enhanced in the mounded spots. However, varying mound height or thickness of mineral capping showed no clear difference in seedling growth. The results therefore suggest that ditch or spot mounding should be used on frost heave susceptible forest soils to promote plantation establishment. Inverting or having no soil preparation with or without herbicide is not recommended.
article id 107, category Research article
Machine planting of Norway spruce by Bracke and Ecoplanter: an evaluation of soil preparation, planting method and seedling performance. Silva Fennica vol. 45 no. 3 article id 107. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.107
We evaluated the effects of planting date and planting machine (Bracke: three machines, 69 regeneration areas in three years; Ecoplanter: six areas, two years) on the quality and field performance one and three years after planting of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) seedlings in central Finland. Both machine types planted on average 1800 seedlings per hectare, and after three years approximately 1600 (Bracke) and 1200 (Ecoplanter) were still alive. This study suggests that planting with a Bracke machine can achieve better regeneration rates than those observed in privately-owned Finnish forests. We characterized the quality of mounding and planting with the Bracke machine as excellent and that of the Ecoplanter as good. The soil preparation method of the Ecoplanter produced humus-rich mounds where seedlings were susceptible to pine weevils and consequently suffered higher mortality. Different machines were used in different regional areas and each machine was operated by different driver/s which may have influenced the results. No negative effects of planting date were observed. Seedling growth decreased if they were tall in relation to their root plug volume, grown too densely in the nursery, and if stored in the field for several months prior to planting. We conclude that mechanized planting is successful when the soil preparation method produces mounds covered by purely mineral soil. Planting from May to the end of September is suitable for seedlings intended for use during this period.
article id 146, category Research article
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.
Category: Research note
article id 403, category Research note
Multilevel modelling of height growth in young Norway spruce plantations in southern Finland. Silva Fennica vol. 39 no. 1 article id 403. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.403
Height development of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) transplants was studied on 22 sites prepared by disc trenching or mounding. At the age of 4–9 years the plantations were surveyed using a multistage sampling design. For every planted spruce on a plot, the past annual height increments were measured as far into the past as possible. Multilevel mixed linear modelling was used to analyse the variation in growth at different levels (year, stand, cluster, plot, tree) and the effects of climatic and site characteristics on height growth. The within-plantation variation in height growth was higher on mounded sites than on disc-trenched sites. The mean temperature and the precipitation sum of the summer months affected height growth positively. Soil characteristics measured from undisturbed soil did not explain the height growth of seedlings on mounded sites, whereas on disc-trenched sites, the depth of the organic layer and the soil temperature had a positive effect and the depth of the eluvial horizon a negative effect. The modelling approach used proved to be a useful method for examining the sources of variation in development of young plantations.
article id 5557, category Article
Forest regeneration on nutrient-poor peatlands: Effects of fertilization, mounding and sowing. Silva Fennica vol. 29 no. 3 article id 5557. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a9208
The effects of wood ash and PK fertilization on natural regeneration and sowing of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) were studied in field experiments on nitrogen-poor (Ntot 0.87–1.26%) peat substrates. The study material was derived from three drained, nutrient-poor pine mires (64°52’ N, 25°08’ E) at Muhos, near Oulu, Finland. The experimental fields were laid out in 1985 as a split-split-plot design including the following treatments; mounding, natural regeneration and sowing and fertilization; PK (400 kg ha-1) and wood ash (5,000 kg ha-1). The seedlings were inventoried in circles in July–August 1991.
Changes in the vegetation were small and there were no statistical differences due to the fertilization treatments in the ground vegetation. PK or ash fertilization did not cause vegetation changes harmful to Scots pine regeneration on nitrogen-poor peatlands. Both sowing and fertilization significantly increased the number of pine seedlings, but not their height. Wood ash increased seedling number more than PK fertilizer. The number of seedlings varied from 7,963 (control) to 42,781 ha-1 (mounding + sowing + ash). The seedling number was adequate for successful regeneration even on non-mounded, non-fertilized naturally regenerated plots.
The number of birch seedlings varied more than that of pine (370–25,927 ha-1). Mounding especially increased the number of birches. The difference between PK fertiliser and ash was less pronounced than that for pine. In addition, to the field studies the effects of ash and PK fertilizer on the germination of Scots pine seeds was studied in a greenhouse experiment. Soaking in ash solutions strongly reduced seed germination, while the PK solution was less harmful.