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Climatic variability and other site factor influences on natural regeneration of Pinus pinaster Ait. in Mediterranean forests
Año del Documento
Annals of Forest Science; Volume 68, Issue 4, pp 811-823
Background: How environmental factors affect forest regeneration is relevant for systems that depend partially or fully on natural regeneration. Objective: P. pinaster post-disturbance regeneration and its relationship to environmental factors was studied in five P. pinaster forest populations of central Spain. We expected that 1) different harvesting methods or wildfire would promote natural regeneration in all populations, but with local and regional variations; 2) alternatively, different site-dependent stand factors would affect natural regeneration, although generalized climate effects would be seen. Analysis of variance and multivariate analysis were used to test differences, to classify ecological variations and to search for the most important factors affecting regeneration. Results: The results suggest that the recovery of P. pinaster forest in burnt stands, and stand replacement in harvested stands can be achieved soon after disturbance if climatic conditions and other local-site factors (e.g. soil and overstorey structure in harvested stands, cone bank in burnt stands) make the stand suitable for natural regeneration. Heterogeneous regeneration can be expected in all cases. The time of precipitation strongly influenced seedling density and successive regeneration development stages. Edaphic properties combined with water availability from precipitation can seriously limit the natural establishment of P. pinaster in xeric systems or during years of intense drought. Although many factors contribute to high variability natural regeneration was very effective (successful) in P. pinaster forests, which contributes to the generalization that natural regeneration is a viable forestry option in many forest types.
Instituto Universitario de Gestión Forestal Sostenible
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