Current issue: 54(2)
The aim of the investigation was to study natural regeneration of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) in drained peatlands and frost injuries in seedlings, and to compare microclimates of the regeneration areas. The experiments included peatlands in Satakunta in Western Finland. Restocking of the areas with seedlings and their survival was followed in 1935-40 at sample plots that were mainly 1 are large.
Susceptibility to freezing was shown to be dependent on the stage of development of the shoots. Shoots that have just begun to grow contain little water, and withstand better freezing temperatures than shoots in later stages of growth. Damages to the seedlings were observed when the temperatures decreased to -2.8–-4.3 °C. The most severe damage to a seedling was caused by the death of the leading shoot by spring frost.
Norway spruce regenerates easily on moist peatlands, but peatlands with dry surface tend to have little or no seedlings. The species regenerated better in marshy sites than correspondingly fertile mineral soil sites. However, it needs shelter to avoid frost damage. On clear cut spruce swamp the undergrowth spruce seedlings that were left in the site got severe frost damage. If the site had birch (Betula sp.) coppice or undergrowth, spruce seedlings survived in their shelter depending on the height and density of the birch trees. To be effective, the protective forest should have relatively even crown cover. Young spruce seedlings could grow well even under relatively dense birch stand.
The PDF includes a summary in German.
Young Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) are susceptible to early summer frost damage. Birch (Betula pubescens Ehrh.) naturally colonize rich or fairly rich drained peatlands after clear cutting, and can provide protection for developing seedlings. The report describes the development of spruce stands after various types of handing of the birch nurse crops.
Different proportions of birch and spruces did not have any influence on the spruce stand production. In cases where the nurse crop stand is removed when the spruce stand age was 20 years and height 4 m the spruce suffered badly but recovered with time, reaching the spruce stand growing under a nurse stand within the next 20 years. The height growth of spruce depends on the density of the nurse stand, especially on fertile sites. The development of diameter growth also depends on the density of the nurse trees. Removal of the nurse stand in spruce stands on the sites concerned should be done when the spruce stand is 20 years old and at the height of 4 m.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
In the eastern parts of South-Finland the growing season of 1967 was highly favourable, which resulted in good height growth during the following year. During the summer 1968, temperature conditions were unfavourable, while the middle of summer was cold and the later part of the growing season unusually hot. The following winter had exceptionally cold spells from January to March, which caused Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) abundant winter frost damages such as dead shoots and buds, and destroyed needles.
These damages occurred particularly in stands with height of 0.5–3 m, and the occurrence of damages seemed to concentrate to the parts of saplings that had been immediately above the snow cover. Detailed observations on spruce plantations growing under a dense nurse stand of alder (Alnus sp.) indicated that explicitly the top shoots suffered from damages and not so much the laterals. When the needles of the leader suffered from minor damages, the shoot continued to grow normally. Still, sometimes a branch took over and became a new leader. If only the leader bud was killed, further stem development became dependent on one of the topmost lateral buds. When the upper part of the leaded died, one of the lateral shoots at its base usually became the new leader.
The PDF includes a summary in English.