Current issue: 56(1)
Under compilation: 56(2)
Hybrid aspen (Populus tremula L. × P. tremuloides Michx.) is known with outstanding growth rate and some favourable wood characteristics, but models for stand management have not yet been prepared in northern Europe. This study introduces methods and models to predict tree dimensions, diameter at breast height (dbh) and tree height for a hybrid aspen plantation using data from repeatedly measured permanent sample plots established in clonal plantations in southern Finland. Dbh distributions using parameter recovery method for the Weibull function was used with Näslund’s height curve to model tree heights. According to the goodness-of-fit statistics of Kolmogorov-Smirnov and the Error Index, the arithmetic mean diameter (D) and basal area-weighted mean diameter (DG) provided more stable parameter recovery for the Weibull distribution than the median diameter (DM) and basal area-weighted median diameter (DGM), while DG showed the best overall fit. Thus, Näslund’s height curve was modelled using DG with Lorey’s height (HG), age, basal area (BA), and tree dbh (Model 1). Also, Model 2 was tested using all predictors of Model 1 with the number of trees per ha (TPH). All predictors were shown to be significant in both Models, showing slightly different behaviour. Model 1 was sensitive to the mean characteristics, DG and HG, while Model 2 was sensitive to stand density, including both BA and TPH as predictors. Model 1 was considered more reasonable to apply based on our results. Consequently, the parameter recovery method using DG and Näslund’s models were applicable for predicting tree diameter and height.
Accurate timber assortment information is required before cuttings to optimize wood allocation and logging activities. Timber assortments can be derived from diameter-height distribution that is most often predicted from the stand characteristics provided by forest inventory. The aim of this study was to assess and compare the accuracy of three different pre-harvest inventory methods in predicting the structure of mainly Scots pine-dominated, clear-cut stands. The investigated methods were an area-based approach (ABA) based on airborne laser scanning data, the smartphone-based forest inventory Trestima app and the more conventional pre-harvest inventory method called EMO. The estimates of diameter-height distributions based on each method were compared to accurate tree taper data measured and registered by the harvester’s measurement systems during the final cut. According to our results, grid-level ABA and Trestima were generally the most accurate methods for predicting diameter-height distribution. ABA provides predictions for systematic 16 m × 16 m grids from which stand-wise characteristics are aggregated. In order to enable multimodal stand-wise distributions, distributions must be predicted for each grid cell and then aggregated for the stand level, instead of predicting a distribution from the aggregated stand-level characteristics. Trestima required a sufficient sample for reliable results. EMO provided accurate results for the dominating Scots pine but, it could not capture minor admixtures. ABA seemed rather trustworthy in predicting stand characteristics and diameter distribution of standing trees prior to harvesting. Therefore, if up-to-date ABA information is available, only limited benefits can be obtained from stand-specific inventory using Trestima or EMO in mature pine or spruce-dominated forests.