Graduate Thesis Or Dissertation

 

The role of density and proportion in allometric equations of Douglas-fir and red alder seedlings Public Deposited

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  • Allometric equations are useful tools for predicting tree biomass when direct measurements are impractical. Any factor affecting plant growth can be a significant variable in allometric equations. Density and species proportion are spatial variables that influence tree growth and should be considered when developing allometric equations. This consideration is especially pertinent when developing equations for use in replacement series experiments (de Wit, 1960), where density and species proportion are treatment variables. Allometric equations for three-year-old Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) and red alder (Alnus rubra) were developed as part of a replacement series experiment in Belfair, Washington. The primary objective of the study was to generate equations for predicting seedling component biomass. Another objective was to test the significance of density and proportion in biomass prediction. Douglas-fir and red alder biomass components were best predicted by stem diameter, total height, and crown width. Density was a significant variable for predicting Douglas-fir leaf biomass and total biomass. However, density was positively correlated with biomass, contrary to normal yield-density relationships, and so was excluded from the model. The percent cover of weed species on the plot was a significant variable for predicting Douglas-fir root biomass. Red alder total biomass was correlated with proportion, indicating that biomass was higher when sample trees were surrounded by a higher number of red alder than of Douglas-fir. Generally, the most significant spatial variable for predicting Douglas-fir biomass was the percent cover of weed species. The most significant spatial variable for predicting red alder biomass was the distance to the nearest neighboring tree. Suggestions f or determining the roles of density and proportion in allometric equations for use in replacement series experiments are given.
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