Current issue: 56(4)
Micropropagated and seed-borne plants of sliver birch (Betula pendula Roth) were compared for survival and growth in a field trial at the age of six years. Three clones for micropropagation were selected from open-pollinated progenies of selected southern Finnish plus trees at the age of 17 and 20. The three seed-borne lots were of southern Finnish stand origin. The best two lots of the experiment as regards the height and diameter growth at the age of six were the clones. The best of these differed significantly from the best-growing seed-grown lot. The weakest lot of the experiment was also a clone which was clearly slow-growing with a dense and bushy crown. Survival of the material was high (mean = 94%), and there was no damage caused by voles and elks, for example. The results clearly show that the selection of material for clonal propagation should be done carefully. The clones should also be tested for performance in the field before propagation on a large scale.
Independent of genotype, increased spacing results in increased branch diameter of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.), but on different levels for different genotypes. Frequency of defects like spike knots and crooked stems are under stronger genetic than silvicultural control. Simultaneous improvement of rate of growth and timber properties is feasible. Deteriorating of both factors can happen rapidly at a negative selection. A defect like stem cracking of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) only manifests itself under drought stress when certain genetic and environmental prerequisites are present, like high fertility and wide spacing. This emphasize the fact that new silvicultural methods may reveal genetic weaknesses.
After a presentation of basic biodiversity concepts, reviews are made of studies reporting genetic implications of tree improvement activities: seed treatments, seedling production, provenance transfers, plus tree selection, seed production in seed orchards and progeny testing.
Several of the activities may influence the genetic structure and diversity of the planted forests. The general conclusion is, however, that planted forests are at least as genetically diverse as the natural stands that they replace. The diversity in forest management and use is best assurance for the future adaptability of the forests.
Seed production of micropropagated plants, seedlings and grafts of Silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) in a polyethylene greenhouse experiment was followed for five years. The grafts started flowering and seed production at the age of two years, one year earlier than other two types of material. At the age of three the seed production of both micropropagated plants and seedlings was already more than two times higher than that of the grafts. Variation between the clones was high and plant type x clone interaction was significant. At the age of four, in 1993, seed production was high in all three types of material. Seed production of the micropropagated plants was two times higher than that of the grafts but about 75% of that of the seedlings. In 1994 seed production of all three plant types was very low, which shows large variation between different years. The early development of the plant material types suggests that micropropagated plants have higher seed production than grafts and could well be used instead of grafts in polythene greenhouse seed orchards.
Genetic variation in 5 natural stands of Quercus robur L. in Finland was analysed electrophoretically for 13 isozyme loci. Stands were on average polymorphic at 49.2% of the loci, with 2.1 alleles per locus. Observed heterozygosities, ranging from 13.6% to 16.9%, were slightly lower than estimates reported for German stands. The majority of the species’ genetic variation was found within each studied stand, and only 5.5% was between stands. Mean genetic differentiation (∂) was the same as that found in the primary range of the species, but the differentiation estimates (D) for single Finnish population were more variable.
Budburst timing and the relationship to storage temperature and duration were investigated in four varieties (entries) of 1–2 metres tall silver birch (Betula pendula Roth) trees. A total of 2,160 shoots were sampled, and the material stores in darkness at 0, 3 or 6 °C from November 29, 1993. When the shoots were placed in storage, they had been through a period of 29 days with temperatures below 0°C (since October 15). By that time the autumn dormancy was assumed already broken, and the trees were expected to respond to increased temperature by bud development. On January 4, 1994, and on four subsequent dates, January 19, February 1, March 4 and March 17, shoots were taken out of storage and set in growth chambers at 9, 12 or 15°C. The time to budburst was recorded.
Duration of storage, storage temperatures and varieties were all highly significant for budburst. The interaction terms were of less statistical importance. Based on the contrast between the three different growth chamber environments, three different methods were used to calculate the threshold temperatures for each entry. In spite of the pre-selection of variable budburst performers, the threshold values, varying between 0°C to -2°C, could not be shown to be statistically different. According to the results, the time of budburst changes in accordance with both winter and spring temperatures, being extremely early after a mild winter and warm spring, given sufficient autumn chilling. The similarities in the threshold temperatures indicate that the ranking in earliness between varieties will most likely be the same from year to year without regard to climate change.
Temperature sums required for budburst in various Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) provenances were determined, and weather statistics were then used to predict the risk of potentially damaging frosts at 11 locations in Sweden. Frost risk was quantified as the probability of a frost occurring within 100 day-degrees (two weeks) after budburst. The examples provided show that a spruce seedling from central Sweden has to sustain almost twice as many frost occassions as a seedling from Belorussia, when planted in southern and central Sweden. The method presented here can be used for mapping early summer frost risk in Sweden and for supporting provenance transfer guidelines.
Seedlings of Picea abies (L.) H. Karst. full-sib families of contrasting origins were cultivated in a phytotron under different photoperiodic, light-intensity and temperature treatments during their first growth period. The effects of the treatments on juvenile growth traits – whether enhanced or delayed maturation was induces – were observed during the two subsequent growth periods. The following hypotheses were tested: (A) Enhanced maturation can be induced in the first growth period from sowing with (i) a long period of continuous light during active growth (24 weeks vs. 8 weeks); (ii) a shorter night during bud maturation (12 h vs. 16 h); high temperature (25°C vs. 20°C) during (iii) active growth, growth cessation and bud maturation; and during (iv) the latter part of growth cessation and bud maturation only. (B) Delayed maturation can be induced after (i) low light intensity during growth cessation and bud maturation (114 μmol m-2 s-1 vs. 340 μmol m-2 s-1); low temperature (15°C vs. 20°C) during (ii) active growth, growth cessation and bud maturation; and during (iii) the latter part of growth cessation and bud maturation only.
The most dramatic effect was observed after 24 weeks of continuous light during active growth. All traits showed a significantly more mature performance in the second growth period compared with the control. The effect for all but one trait was carried over to the third growth period. This is in accordance with the hypothesis that the activity of apical shoot meristems controls the maturation process. For the other treatments there was only weak or no support for the hypothesis of induction of enhanced or delayed maturation. Strong family effects were observed for all traits. Differential responses of the various latitudinal families were observed, suggesting that family effects must be considered to predict and interpret correctly how plants will respond to environmental effects.
Snow damage to forests in Southern Finland in November 1991 was examined in relation to meteorological conditions. The combined effect of different factors proved to be necessary for severe damage. First, the snow load, in terms of precipitation, should exceed a certain limit. The limit can be set for weak or moderate damage at about 40 mm and for very severe damage at about 60 mm. Second, temperature at the time of precipitation should be above 0°C, which enables the slightly wet snow to attach to twigs during the subsequent period with temperature below 0°C. On the other hand, temperatures exceeding 0.6°C prohibit damage by permitting the snow load to fall from the branches. Wind speed exceeding 9 ms-1, as observed 15 m above ground, were strong enough to dislodge the snow which is not attached, and thus reduce the damage. There are few statistics either of snow damage or of the relation between the snow damage and precipitation. However, there is causal connection between snow damage and heavy snowfalls. Therefore, the regions with a high frequency of heavy snowfalls, as indicated by orographical features and occurrence of thick snow cover, were investigated.
For biomass forestry in the inland parts of Southern and Central Finland, the obvious choice of willow species is Salix myrsinifolia. However, selection of clones of indigenous species has not yet been completed and more research and selection is needed. In the Piipsanneva old peatland trial, indigenous species of willow, mostly clones of S. myrsinifolia and S. phylicifolia, were compared in terms of biomass production, coppicing, height growth and diameter distributions. In this trial, the mean annual biomass production was not particularly high; more important results were attained in the ranking of clones. The trial strengthens the hypothesis that, over the long-term, the biomass production of S. myrsinifolia is higher than that of S. phylicifolia. It was supposed that behind the highest yield there was a clone with uniform quality, one whose diameter distribution would be narrow and positively skewed. Comparisons of parameters of Weibull functions showed that the distributions of the best clones were wide, indicating that those clones use the whole growth space better than those with narrow distribution.
Growth and nutrition of 20 clones representing different species and interspecific hybrids of willows (Salix spp.) growing on an abandoned field were studied. There were highly significant differences between the clones as regards the survival, number of sprouts per stool, sprout mean height and diameter and stem biomass production per stool. The differences between the clones in the concentration of all nutrients in both the leaves and stems were highly significant.
The aim of the study was to obtain information needed in preparing more precise fertilization recommendations for seed orchards. The fertilization requirement was estimated on basis of soil and needle analyses, and by investigating the effects of different fertilization treatments on male and female flowering, size of seed crop and seed quality.
The study was carried out in two Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seed orchards in Southern Finland, one established on forest soil in 1971 and 1972, and the other on a peat field in 1974. 10 clones and 39 grafts from each clone were selected randomly from both orchards in autumn 1985. The treatments consisted of N, P and K in various combinations, micronutrients, wood ash and grass control. The orchards were fertilized in spring 1986.
There were statistically significant differences between the clones in both orchards as regards amount of flowers, size of the seed crop and seed quality. The annual variation in flowering and the size of the seed crop was also large. In general, the seeds from cones collected in October matured well and their germination percentage was high. The effects of fertilization on flowering, the size of seed crop and seed quality were small. It would appear that the size of the crop can be affected to a much greater extent by favouring clones with a high seed-producing capacity than through fertilization. Fertilization is unnecessary if the nutrient status of the soil is satisfactory.
Change in dry matter partitioning, 14C-incorporation, and sink 14C-activity of 1.5-year-old Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) seedlings grown in growth chamber conditions were studied during a 91-day experiment. On five sampling dates, seedlings were labelled with 14CO2 and whole-plant allocation patterns were determined. Intensively growing shoots modified the dry matter partitioning: during shoot growth the proportion of roots decreased but after that it increased. Based on their large proportion of dry matter, the needles (excluding current needles) were the strongest sink of carbon containing 40% of the incorporated 14C. Despite their small initial sink size, the elongating shoots (current main shoot + current branch) and their needles were the second strongest sink (30–40% of the total 14C) which reflects their high physiological activity. The proportion of 14C in the current year’s main shoot increased during shoot growth but decreased as the growth began to decline after 70 days. 10–20% of the total assimilated 14C was translocated to the roots. Laterals above 2nd order were the strongest sink in the root system, containing twice as much 14C as the other roots together. Alternation between shoot and root growth can be seen clearly: carbon allocation to roots was relatively high before and after the period of intensive shoot growth. Changes in root sink strength resulted primarily from changes in root sink activity rather than sink size.
A Gremmeniella abietina (Lagerb.) race of type A was found to produce pycnidia in cankers of previous year’s shoots (1991) on branches of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) bearing green needles and living buds in the current-year shoots (1992) with no apparent symptoms of infection by G. abietina. The restricted colonization of green shoots by G. abietina, with only restricted canker development, may indicate that older, slow-growing natural Scots pines of the northern boreal forests resists the fungus well. However, the ability of the fungus to survive and even sporulate in such cankers indicates one way of surviving over consecutive years otherwise unfavourable for it.
For non-industrial private forest (NIPF) owners land with its timber production is an example of a capital asset. Developments in the asset’s value and yield depend not only on forest management but also on other factors that the owner cannot control, for example timber prices and the production circumstances, such as soil and climate. One important basis for decision making related to management strategy and, in the short run, to cutting and silvicultural activities is economic analysis and accounting. The owner has to decide whether to invest more in his property (planting, cleaning, building of forest roads) or disinvest (sell timber or the holding). He has to find ways to increase revenue and cut costs.
However, generally accepted accounting practices for NIPF owners are lacking. Applying business economic accounting principles and forestry accounting traditions, we outline a proposal for a profit and loss accounting and balance sheet for NIPF holdings with a view towards increasing economic awareness among private owners. Key concepts are net profit of the enterprise and calculated profit of the property. Other profit measurements that are used are gross margin, forestry margin, operating margin and operating profit. Calculated profit is based on adjusted net profit. The main concern, however, is to consider the change in the holding’s market value caused by changes in stock volume, quality and price. The contents of the accounting framework development here are applied to three management strategies. The return on investment (ROI) of forestry is compared with other investment alternatives.
53 genotypes of embryonal suspensor masses (ESMs) rescued from mature seeds of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) were examined for their pattern of growth and development under standardized culture conditions in vitro. Patterns were classified according to the colour of the colonies grown in darkness, clarity of cell masses and proembryos in the mucilaginous ESM, surface boundary topology of colonies, structure of suspensors, growth rate of the ESM, and recovery of mature embryos.
Five distinctive major growth patterns were observed among ESM colonies under standardized culture conditions. The multiplication of proembryos and early embryos by cleavage and budding polyembryony was the main factor contributing to proliferation and colony growth and further determined the morphology of the colonies. Callus and teratological structures were induced from early embryos by changing the standardized culture conditions i.e. inadequate subculture, excessive dose of 2,4-D in the medium and premature exposure of the colonies to light. Results enable the selection of ESM genotypes for the predictable recovery of mature somatic embryos.
Forest ecosystems may accumulate large amounts of nitrogen in the biomass and in the soil organic matter. However, there is increasing concern that deposition of inorganic nitrogen compounds from the atmosphere will lead to nitrogen saturation; excess nitrogen input does not increase production. The aim of this study was to determine the long-term changes caused by nitrogen input on accumulation of nitrogen in forest soils and in ground vegetation.
The fertilization experiments used in this study were established during 1958–1962. They were situated on 36- to 63-year-old Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.) stands of different levels of fertility. The experiments received nitrogen fertilization 5–7 times over a 30-year period, and the total input of nitrogen was 596–926 kg/ha.
Nitrogen input increased the amount of organic matter in the humus layer and the nitrogen concentration in the organic matter. Furthermore, the total amount of nutrients (N, P, K, Ca and Mg) bound by the humus layer increased due to the increase in the amount of organic matter. However, nitrogen input decreased the biomass of ground vegetation. The nitrogen concentration of the plant material on the nitrogen-fertilized plots was higher than on the control plots, but the amount of nutrients bound by ground vegetation decreased owing to the drastic decrease in the biomass of mosses. Ground vegetation does not have the potential to accumulate nitrogen, because vegetation is dominated by slow-growing mosses and dwarf shrubs which do not benefit from nitrogen input.
The amount of carbon (C) stored in wood products manufactured in Finland was calculated with the help of a model using wood harvesting statistics, product flows and lifespans in order to study how much C could be set aside from the atmospheric C cycle outside the forest ecosystem. The calculations showed that on the average 9.9 Tg C/a was in harvested timber in 1986–1991 in Finland. C emissions of timber harvest and transport were 0.1 Tg C/a. In production processes about one third of the C bound in in timber was released into the atmosphere, but two thirds was still bound in products. After 50 and 100 years, more than 40% and 33% of the C initially in products was either in products still in use or disposed to landfills. The wood product C storage was most sensitive to landfill decay rate and to the burning of abandoned products for energy, but not to the same extent to the length of the lifespan of products.
Damage on Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) caused by Gremmeniella abietina (Lagerb.) Morelet was assessed in the summer of 1992 in 67 stands in eastern Lapland. The area and severity of damage were smaller and lighter than had earlier been estimated and occurred especially in stands in the first-thinning stage or in middle-age. Significant new infection of 1991 occurred in stands previously heavily infected by G. abietina near Kemihaara river, lake Naruska, the Naruska river, the Tuntsa river and lake Vilma. Fresh damage occurred mainly in the lower or middle parts of the Scots pine canopies.
Relationships between bulk density and organic matter (OM) content, textural properties and depth are described for forested mineral soils from Central and Northern Finland. Core samples were taken of 0–5, 30–35 and 60–65 cm layers at 75 plots. Three measures of bulk density were calculated: the bulk density of the < 20 mm fraction (BD20), the bulk density of the < 2 mm fraction (BD2), and laboratory bulk density (BDl). BDl was determined from the mass of a fixed volume of < 2 mm soil taken in the laboratory. All three measures of bulk densities were strongly correlated with organic matter content (r ≥ -0.63). Depth and gravel (2–20 mm) content (in the case of BD2) were also important variables. BDl was sensitive to clay contents > 7% but did significantly improve the prediction of both BD2 and BD20 in coarse soils (clay contents ≤ 7%). Predictive models were derived for coarse soils.
Variation in needle nutrient concentrations with age and vertical location in the crown was studied in three Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) stands growing on peat soils in Eastern Finland. The concentrations of N, P, Fe and Zn decreased down the crown and those of Ca and Mn increased. Potassium and magnesium concentration patterns differed between sites.
Potassium and Mg concentrations were highest in the current needles at all heights in the crown, iron and manganese concentrations were highest in the oldest needles. The concentrations of N, P and Zn did not vary with needle age.
The Värriö environmental measurement station has been designed and constructed during 1991 and 1992. The measurement system consists of measurement units for gases (sulphur dioxide, ozone, carbon dioxide), particles, photosynthesis and irradiation. A meteorological station is also included. The preliminary measurement period was started on August, 1991. During the first year (1991–1992) some parts of the system were redeveloped and rebuilt. Full, continuous measurement started in August 1992. The system has been working quite reliably, with good accuracy. The preliminary results show that pollution episodes are observed when the wind direction is from Monchegorsk or Nikel, the main emission sources in Kola Peninsula.
A spatial growth model is presented for Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) on a dwarf-shrub pine mire drained 14 years earlier. The growth model accounts for the variation in tree diameter growth owing to the competition between trees, the distance between tree and ditch, and the time passed since drainage. The model was used to study the effect of tree arrangement on the post-drainage growth of a pine stand. Clustering of trees decreased the volume growth by 9–20% as compared to a regular spatial distribution. Stand volume growth, for a given number of stems, was at its maximum and variation in diameter growth at its minimum when the stand density on the ditch border was 1.5–5 higher than midway between two adjacent ditches.
In this study, model-based and design-based inference methods are used for estimating mean volume and its standard error for systematic cluster sampling. Results obtained with models are compared to results obtained with classical methods. The data are from the Finnish National Forest Inventory. The variation of volume in ten forestry board districts in Southern Finland is studied. The variation is divided into two components: trend and correlated random errors. The effect of the trend and the covariance structure on the obtained mean volume and standard error estimates is discussed. The larger the coefficient of determination of the trend model, the smaller the model-based estimates of standard error, when compared to classical estimates. On the other hand, the wider the range and level of autocorrelation between the sample plots, the larger the model-based estimates of standard error.