The Level-of-Growing-Stock (LOGS) study on thinning ponderosa pine forests in the US West: A long-term collaborative experiment in density management

https://doi.org/10.17221/72/2020-JFSCitation:

Zhang J.W., Oliver W.W., Graham R.T., Moser W.K. (2020): The Level-of-Growing-Stock (LOGS) study on thinning ponderosa pine forests in the US West: A long-term collaborative experiment in density management. J. For. Sci., 66: 393–406.

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The Levels-of-Growing-Stock study for ponderosa pine was a collective effort among western Research Stations within the US Forest Service. The experiment was established to test sustainable productivity across a wide range of densities by periodically thinning the plots. Beyond the original purposes for wood production, contemporary applications of these long-term studies have been to determine stand density effects on (i) both overstory and understory responses to stand development of even-aged ponderosa pine, (ii) biomass accumulation and carbon sequestration, (iii) plant diversity and wildlife habitats, and (iv) forest resiliency to insects and pathogens, droughts, and wildfires. Furthermore, these installations have served as a showpiece for the public and natural laboratories for professional foresters and students. For the past half century, the study has helped guide land managers and stakeholders on public and private lands about the value of thinning in overstocked young stands of ponderosa pine across its range. We hope that it will continue to serve as a springboard for addressing future issues facing forest management.

 

References:
Alexander R.R., Edminster C.B. (1980): Management of ponderosa pine in even-aged stands in the Southwest. Research Paper RM-225. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 11.
 
Bahre C.J., Bloom K.J. (2003): Historical evidence for the upslope retreat of ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forest in California’s Gold Country. Yearbook of the Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, 65: 46–59. https://doi.org/10.1353/pcg.2003.0007
 
Bailey J.D. (2008): Forty Years Later at Taylor Woods: Merging the Old and New. In: Olberding S.D., Moore M.M. (eds): Fort Valley Experimental Forest – A Century of Research 1908–2008. Proceedings RMRS-P-55. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station: 100–105.
 
Barrett J.W. (1983): Growth of Ponderosa Pine Poles Thinned to Different Stocking Levels in Central Oregon. Research Paper PNW-311. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 9.
 
Bates C.G. (1919): Effects of Thinning in Black Hills Yellow Pine. Progress Report for 1919 (Unpublished Paper). Moscow, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research: 46.
 
Boldt C.E., Van Deusen J.L. (1974): Silviculture of Ponderosa Pine in the Black Hills: The Status of Our Knowledge. Research Paper RM-124. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 45.
 
Brang P. (2005): Virgin forests as a knowledge source for central European silviculture: Reality or myth? Forest Snow and Landscape Research, 79: 19–32.
 
Brang P., Spathelf P., Larsen J.B., Bauhus J., Boncčìna A., Chauvin C., Drössler L., García-Güemes C., Heiri C., Kerr G., Lexer M.J. (2014): Suitability of close-to-nature silviculture for adapting temperate European forests to climate change. Forestry, 87: 492–503. https://doi.org/10.1093/forestry/cpu018
 
Clary W.P., Ffolliott P.F. (1966): Differences in Herbage-timber Relationships between Thinned and Unthinned Ponderosa Pine Stands. Research Note RM-74. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 4.
 
Cochran P.H., Barrett J. W. (1995): Growth and mortality of ponderosa pine thinned to various densities in the Blue Mountains of Oregon. Research Paper PNW-RP-483. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 27.
 
Cochran P.H., Barrett J.W. (1999): Growth of Ponderosa Pine Thinned to Different Stocking Levels in Central Oregon: 30-year Results. Research Paper PNW-RP-508. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station: 27.
 
Cooper-Ellis S., Foster D.R., Carlton G., Lezberg A. (1999): Forest response to catastrophic wind: results from an experimental hurricane. Ecology, 80: 2683–2696.  https://doi.org/10.1890/0012-9658(1999)080[2683:FRTCWR]2.0.CO;2
 
Curtis R.O., Marshall D.D., Bell J.F. (1997): LOGS: A pioneering example of silvicultural research in coast Douglas-fir. Journal of Forestry, 95: 19–25.
 
Diaci J., Kerr G., O’Hara, K. (2011): Twenty-first century forestry: integrating ecologically based, uneven-aged silviculture with increased demands on forests. Forestry, 84: 463–465. https://doi.org/10.1093/forestry/cpr053
 
Didion M., Kupferschmid A.D., Lexer M.J., Rammer W., Seidl R., Bugmann H. (2009): Potentials and limitations of using large-scale forest inventory data for evaluating forest succession models. Ecological Modelling, 220: 133–147. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2008.09.021
 
Earles J.M., North M.P., Hurteau M.D. (2014): Wildfire and drought dynamics destabilize carbon stores of fire-suppressed forests. Ecological Applications, 24: 732–740. https://doi.org/10.1890/13-1860.1
 
Edminster C.B. (1988): Stand Density and Stocking in Even-aged Ponderosa Pine Stands. In: Baumgartner D.M., Lotan J.E. (eds): Proceedings of the symposium on ponderosa pine: the species and its management. Pullman, Washington State University: 253–260.
 
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Gaines E.M., Kotok E.S. (1954): Thinning Ponderosa Pine in the Southwest. Station Paper No. 17. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 20.
 
Graham R.T., Asherin L.A., Jain T.B., Baggett L.S., Battaglia M.A. (2019): Differing Ponderosa Pine Forest Structures, Their Growth and Yield, and Mountain Pine Beetle Impacts: Growing Stock Levels in the Black Hills. RMRS-GTR-393. Fort Collins, USDA, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station:102.
 
Griffis K.L., Crawford J.A., Wagner M.E., Moir W.H. (2001): Understory response to management treatments in northern Arizona ponderosa pine forests. Forest Ecology and Management, 146: 239–245. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-1127(00)00461-8
 
Harmon W.H. (1955): Ponderosa pine management in the Black Hills. Ames Forester, 42: 6–8.
 
Kolb T.E., Holmberg K.M., Wagner M.R., Stone J.E. (1998): Regulation of ponderosa pine foliar physiology and insect resistance mechanism by basal area treatments. Tree Physiology, 18: 375–381. https://doi.org/10.1093/treephys/18.6.375
 
Korstian C.F. (1920): Effect of thinning and pruning on diameter growth of western yellow pine. Journal of Forestry, 18: 304–305.
 
Krauch H. (1949): Results of thinning experiment in ponderosa pine pole stands in central Arizona. Journal of Forestry, 47: 466–469.
 
Long J.N. Smith F.W. (1990): Determinants of stemwood production in Pinus contorta var. latifolia forests: the influence of site quality and stand structure. Journal of Applied Ecology, 27: 847–856. https://doi.org/10.2307/2404381
 
Markstrom D.C., Troxell H.E., Boldt C.E. (1983): Wood properties of immature ponderosa pine after thinning. Forest Products Journal, 33: 33–36.
 
McDowell N.G., Adams H.D., Bailey J.D., Hess M., Kolb T.E. (2006): Homeostatic maintenance of ponderosa pine gas exchange in response to stand density changes. Ecological Applications, 16: 1164–1182. https://doi.org/10.1890/1051-0761(2006)016[1164:HMOPPG]2.0.CO;2
 
Meyer W.H. (1938): Yield of Even-aged Stands of Ponderosa Pine. Technical Bulletin 630. Washington, DC, United States Department of Agriculture: 59.
 
Mowat E.L. (1953): Thinning Ponderosa Pine in the Pacific Northwest. Research Paper 5. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 24.
 
Myers C.A. (1958): Thinning improves development of young stands of ponderosa pine in the Black Hills. Journal of Forestry, 56: 656–659.
 
Myers C.A. (1966): Yield Tables for Managed Stands with Special Reference to the Black Hills. Research Paper RM-21. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 20.
 
Myers C.A. (1967): Growing Stock Levels in Even-Aged Ponderosa Pine. Research Paper RM-33. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 8.
 
O’Hara K.L. (1989): Stand growth efficiency in a Douglas-fir thinning trial. Forestry, 62: 409–418. https://doi.org/10.1093/forestry/62.4.409
 
O’Hara K.L. (2016): What is close-to-nature silviculture in a changing world? Forestry, 89: 1–6.
 
Oliver W.W. (1979): Growth of Planted Ponderosa Pine Thinned to Different Stocking Levels in Northern California. Research Paper PSW-147. Berkeley, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 11.
 
Oliver W.W. (1995): Is self-thinning of ponderosa pine ruled by Dendroctonus bark beetle? In: Eskew L.G. (ed.): Forest Health through Silviculture. Proceedings of the National Silviculture Workshop, Mescalero, May 8–11, 1995: 213–218.
 
Oliver W.W. (1997): Twenty five-year growth and mortality of planted ponderosa pine repeatedly thinned to different stand densities in northern California. Western Journal of Applied Forestry, 12: 122–130. https://doi.org/10.1093/wjaf/12.4.122
 
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Oliver W.W., Dolph K.L. (1992): Mixed-conifer seedling growth varies in response to overstory release. Forest Ecology and Management, 48: 179–183. https://doi.org/10.1016/0378-1127(92)90130-2
 
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Bahre C.J., Bloom K.J. (2003): Historical evidence for the upslope retreat of ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forest in California’s Gold Country. Yearbook of the Association of Pacific Coast Geographers, 65: 46–59. https://doi.org/10.1353/pcg.2003.0007
 
Bailey J.D. (2008): Forty Years Later at Taylor Woods: Merging the Old and New. In: Olberding S.D., Moore M.M. (eds): Fort Valley Experimental Forest – A Century of Research 1908–2008. Proceedings RMRS-P-55. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station: 100–105.
 
Barrett J.W. (1983): Growth of Ponderosa Pine Poles Thinned to Different Stocking Levels in Central Oregon. Research Paper PNW-311. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 9.
 
Bates C.G. (1919): Effects of Thinning in Black Hills Yellow Pine. Progress Report for 1919 (Unpublished Paper). Moscow, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research: 46.
 
Boldt C.E., Van Deusen J.L. (1974): Silviculture of Ponderosa Pine in the Black Hills: The Status of Our Knowledge. Research Paper RM-124. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 45.
 
Brang P. (2005): Virgin forests as a knowledge source for central European silviculture: Reality or myth? Forest Snow and Landscape Research, 79: 19–32.
 
Brang P., Spathelf P., Larsen J.B., Bauhus J., Boncčìna A., Chauvin C., Drössler L., García-Güemes C., Heiri C., Kerr G., Lexer M.J. (2014): Suitability of close-to-nature silviculture for adapting temperate European forests to climate change. Forestry, 87: 492–503. https://doi.org/10.1093/forestry/cpu018
 
Clary W.P., Ffolliott P.F. (1966): Differences in Herbage-timber Relationships between Thinned and Unthinned Ponderosa Pine Stands. Research Note RM-74. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 4.
 
Cochran P.H., Barrett J. W. (1995): Growth and mortality of ponderosa pine thinned to various densities in the Blue Mountains of Oregon. Research Paper PNW-RP-483. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 27.
 
Cochran P.H., Barrett J.W. (1999): Growth of Ponderosa Pine Thinned to Different Stocking Levels in Central Oregon: 30-year Results. Research Paper PNW-RP-508. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station: 27.
 
Cooper-Ellis S., Foster D.R., Carlton G., Lezberg A. (1999): Forest response to catastrophic wind: results from an experimental hurricane. Ecology, 80: 2683–2696.  https://doi.org/10.1890/0012-9658(1999)080[2683:FRTCWR]2.0.CO;2
 
Curtis R.O., Marshall D.D., Bell J.F. (1997): LOGS: A pioneering example of silvicultural research in coast Douglas-fir. Journal of Forestry, 95: 19–25.
 
Diaci J., Kerr G., O’Hara, K. (2011): Twenty-first century forestry: integrating ecologically based, uneven-aged silviculture with increased demands on forests. Forestry, 84: 463–465. https://doi.org/10.1093/forestry/cpr053
 
Didion M., Kupferschmid A.D., Lexer M.J., Rammer W., Seidl R., Bugmann H. (2009): Potentials and limitations of using large-scale forest inventory data for evaluating forest succession models. Ecological Modelling, 220: 133–147. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2008.09.021
 
Earles J.M., North M.P., Hurteau M.D. (2014): Wildfire and drought dynamics destabilize carbon stores of fire-suppressed forests. Ecological Applications, 24: 732–740. https://doi.org/10.1890/13-1860.1
 
Edminster C.B. (1988): Stand Density and Stocking in Even-aged Ponderosa Pine Stands. In: Baumgartner D.M., Lotan J.E. (eds): Proceedings of the symposium on ponderosa pine: the species and its management. Pullman, Washington State University: 253–260.
 
Ensz E.H. (1990): Soil Survey of Custer and Pennington Counties, Black Hills Parts, South Dakota. Washington, DC, Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service: 295.
 
Fettig C.J., Klepzig K.D., Billings R.F., Munson A.S., Nebeker T.E., Negron J.F., Nowak J.T. (2007): The effectiveness of vegetation management practices for prevention and control of bark beetle outbreaks in coniferous forests of the western and southern United States. Forest Ecology and Management, 238: 24–53. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foreco.2006.10.011
 
Gaines E.M., Kotok E.S. (1954): Thinning Ponderosa Pine in the Southwest. Station Paper No. 17. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 20.
 
Graham R.T., Asherin L.A., Jain T.B., Baggett L.S., Battaglia M.A. (2019): Differing Ponderosa Pine Forest Structures, Their Growth and Yield, and Mountain Pine Beetle Impacts: Growing Stock Levels in the Black Hills. RMRS-GTR-393. Fort Collins, USDA, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station:102.
 
Griffis K.L., Crawford J.A., Wagner M.E., Moir W.H. (2001): Understory response to management treatments in northern Arizona ponderosa pine forests. Forest Ecology and Management, 146: 239–245. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-1127(00)00461-8
 
Harmon W.H. (1955): Ponderosa pine management in the Black Hills. Ames Forester, 42: 6–8.
 
Kolb T.E., Holmberg K.M., Wagner M.R., Stone J.E. (1998): Regulation of ponderosa pine foliar physiology and insect resistance mechanism by basal area treatments. Tree Physiology, 18: 375–381. https://doi.org/10.1093/treephys/18.6.375
 
Korstian C.F. (1920): Effect of thinning and pruning on diameter growth of western yellow pine. Journal of Forestry, 18: 304–305.
 
Krauch H. (1949): Results of thinning experiment in ponderosa pine pole stands in central Arizona. Journal of Forestry, 47: 466–469.
 
Long J.N. Smith F.W. (1990): Determinants of stemwood production in Pinus contorta var. latifolia forests: the influence of site quality and stand structure. Journal of Applied Ecology, 27: 847–856. https://doi.org/10.2307/2404381
 
Markstrom D.C., Troxell H.E., Boldt C.E. (1983): Wood properties of immature ponderosa pine after thinning. Forest Products Journal, 33: 33–36.
 
McDowell N.G., Adams H.D., Bailey J.D., Hess M., Kolb T.E. (2006): Homeostatic maintenance of ponderosa pine gas exchange in response to stand density changes. Ecological Applications, 16: 1164–1182. https://doi.org/10.1890/1051-0761(2006)016[1164:HMOPPG]2.0.CO;2
 
Meyer W.H. (1938): Yield of Even-aged Stands of Ponderosa Pine. Technical Bulletin 630. Washington, DC, United States Department of Agriculture: 59.
 
Mowat E.L. (1953): Thinning Ponderosa Pine in the Pacific Northwest. Research Paper 5. Portland, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 24.
 
Myers C.A. (1958): Thinning improves development of young stands of ponderosa pine in the Black Hills. Journal of Forestry, 56: 656–659.
 
Myers C.A. (1966): Yield Tables for Managed Stands with Special Reference to the Black Hills. Research Paper RM-21. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 20.
 
Myers C.A. (1967): Growing Stock Levels in Even-Aged Ponderosa Pine. Research Paper RM-33. Fort Collins, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station: 8.
 
O’Hara K.L. (1989): Stand growth efficiency in a Douglas-fir thinning trial. Forestry, 62: 409–418. https://doi.org/10.1093/forestry/62.4.409
 
O’Hara K.L. (2016): What is close-to-nature silviculture in a changing world? Forestry, 89: 1–6. https://doi.org/10.1093/forestry/cpv043
 
Oliver W.W. (1979): Growth of Planted Ponderosa Pine Thinned to Different Stocking Levels in Northern California. Research Paper PSW-147. Berkeley, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Forest and Range Experiment Station: 11.
 
Oliver W.W. (1995): Is self-thinning of ponderosa pine ruled by Dendroctonus bark beetle? In: Eskew L.G. (ed.): Forest Health through Silviculture. Proceedings of the National Silviculture Workshop, Mescalero, May 8–11, 1995: 213–218.
 
Oliver W.W. (1997): Twenty five-year growth and mortality of planted ponderosa pine repeatedly thinned to different stand densities in northern California. Western Journal of Applied Forestry, 12: 122–130. https://doi.org/10.1093/wjaf/12.4.122
 
Oliver W.W. (2005): The west-wide ponderosa pine levels-of-growing-stock study at age 40. In: Ritchie M.W., Maguire D.A., Youngblood A. (eds): Proceedings of the Symposium on Ponderosa Pine: Issues, Trends and Management, Klamath Falls, Oct 18–21, 2004: 71–80.
 
Oliver W.W., Dolph K.L. (1992): Mixed-conifer seedling growth varies in response to overstory release. Forest Ecology and Management, 48: 179–183. https://doi.org/10.1016/0378-1127(92)90130-2
 
Oliver W.W., Edminster C.B. (1988): Growth of ponderosa pine thinned to different stocking levels in the western United States. In: Schmidt W.C. (ed.): Proceedings of the Future Forests of the Mountain West: A Stand Culture Symposium, Missoula, Sept 29–Oct 3, 1986: 153–159.
 
Pearson G.A. (1936): A thinning experiment applied to timber stand improvement. Journal of Forestry, 34: 855–861.
 
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