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Weeds and Tree Planting

In many regions a heavy cover of weeds is by far the most frequent and critical factor responsible for depressed growth of forest plantations. On short rotations, the evapotranspiration of competing vegetation and its immobilization of nutrients may deprive a plantation owner of as much as two-thirds of the potential volume of timber. Usually, a reduction in growth of trees is closely related to biomass of weeds, the ovendry weight of their tops and roots. Neglecting to appraise quantitatively the weed biomass of planting sites leaves the prospective tree planter unable to predict the yield of the plantation to be established, the most desirable tree spacing, and the possible return on either chemical or mechanical eradication of weeds. This note describes a simplified method for estimating biomass of competing plants and outlines relationships between density of weeds, tree spacing, and expected yield of plantations.

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Author(s): S. A. Wilde

Publication: Tree Planters' Notes - Volume 21, Number 1 (1970)

Volume: 21

Number: 1