Species-site matching in mixed species plantations of native trees in tropical Australia

Manson, Daniel G., Schmidt, Susanne, Bristow, Mila, Erskine, Peter D. and Vanclay, Jerome K. (2013) Species-site matching in mixed species plantations of native trees in tropical Australia. Agroforestry Systems, 87 1: 233-250. doi:10.1007/s10457-012-9538-0


Author Manson, Daniel G.
Schmidt, Susanne
Bristow, Mila
Erskine, Peter D.
Vanclay, Jerome K.
Title Species-site matching in mixed species plantations of native trees in tropical Australia
Journal name Agroforestry Systems   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0167-4366
1572-9680
Publication date 2013-02
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s10457-012-9538-0
Volume 87
Issue 1
Start page 233
End page 250
Total pages 18
Place of publication Dordrecht, Netherlands
Publisher Springer
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Abstract Mixed species plantations using native trees are increasingly being considered for sustainable timber production. Successful application of mixed species forestry systems requires knowledge of the potential spatial interaction between species in order to minimise the chance of dominance and suppression and to maximise wood production. Here, we examined species performances across 52 experimental plots of tree mixtures established on cleared rainforest land to analyse relationships between the growth of component species and climate and soil conditions. We derived site index (SI) equations for ten priority species to evaluate performance and site preferences. Variation in SI of focus species demonstrated that there are strong species-specific responses to climate and soil variables. The best predictor of tree growth for rainforest species Elaeocarpus grandis and Flindersia brayleyana was soil type, as trees grew significantly better on well-draining than on poorly drained soil profiles. Both E. grandis and Eucalyptus pellita showed strong growth response to variation in mean rain days per month. Our study generates understanding of the relative performance of species in mixed species plantations in the Wet Tropics of Australia and improves our ability to predict species growth compatibilities at potential planting sites within the region. Given appropriate species selections and plantation design, mixed plantations of high-value native timber species are capable of sustaining relatively high productivity at a range of sites up to age 10 years, and may offer a feasible approach for large-scale reforestation.
Keyword Elaeocarpus grandis
E. cloeziana
E. pellita
Flindersia brayleyana
Mixed species plantation
Rainforest plantation
Soil type
Site index
Species-site matching
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online: 29 June 2012.

 
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