Analysis methods for modeling tree and stand growth responses to fertilization and thinning Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/z029p777x

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  • This paper describes methods that can be used to evaluate stand and tree growth response to a single application of fertilization and/or thinning with data collected from multiple installations. Two kinds of methods were proposed: (1) structure analysis which applies covariance analysis in a blocked design with and without sampling units, and (2) multi-step analysis which first fits a control model to control data and then uses it to evaluate treatment response. Ideally, the former method is preferred to the latter method for evaluating the treatment response. However, when the experimental data are large in sampling size and/or complex in their designed structure, structure analysis often can not be performed on most statistical packages, and, therefore, the multi-step analysis is a viable alternative. The methods were applied in modeling fertilization and thinning effects on Douglas-fir [Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco] dominant height growth and diameter growth of single trees. Both responses due to improved nutrition from a single application of nitrogen fertilizer were significant (a=O.05) in the first 5-year growth period, and not significant after two 5-year cycles. The response in diameter growth was stronger than that in dominant height growth. Thinning neither increased nor decreased the dominant height growth. It accelerated diameter growth, but the interaction of fertilization with thinning was not significant. As a comparison, both structure analysis and two-step analysis were used to model the direct effect of fertilization on the gross basal area growth of plots. The results showed that the appropriate variance estimates to test the significance of the parameters in fertilizer response equation were larger when using two-step analysis than when using structure analysis.
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