Intra-ring variations in mature Douglas-fir trees from provenance plantations Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/gq67jw57s

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  • The purpose of this study was to investigate variation in some intra-ring characteristics in juvenile and mature wood from two Douglas-fir genetic plantations established in 1912 by the U.S. Forest Service. The experimental material consisted of progeny from thirty families representing ten provenances (3 families per provenance) grown in two replications in each planting site. Each family was sampled by three trees, each tree by two increment cores. Using X-ray densitometry, the following characteristics were determined for juvenile and mature wood: earlywood density (EWD), latewood density (LWD), average ring density (RD), earlywood width (EWW), latewood width (LWW), ring width (RW), and latewood percent (LWP). Two models were used to analyze the variation patterns: 1) families pooled across provenances and 2) provenances and families-within-provenances. Heritabilities and correlations (phenotypic and genetic) were also determined. Differences between plantations were significant for all traits except juvenile RD and mature RW and EWD. Genetic variation associated with provenances was evident for RD and EWD, but it was relatively unimportant for ring width parameters except LWP. There was significant variability among families-within-provenances for juvenile RW as well as for mature RD, LWW, and LWP, an indication that progress can be made for these traits by selection within populations. Heritabilities obtained from the analysis of the 30 families (pooled across provenances) were biased upwards due to the provenance variation. The RD components (EWD and LWD) had strong phenotypic and genetic correlations with their respective RW components (EWW and LWW). Contrariwise, phenotypic correlation between average RD and total RW was non-existent and genotypic correlation was weak. The potential exists for selection to improve juvenile and mature wood density, yet the impact of this on radial growth is low. Early selection is feasible for RD, EWD, LWW, and LWP. Selection to improve juvenile RW does not affect wood density during mature wood growth period.
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