Effects of pruning on heartwood formation in Scots pine trees

https://doi.org/10.17221/4595-JFSCitation:Bergström B., Gref R., Ericsson A. (2004): Effects of pruning on heartwood formation in Scots pine trees. J. For. Sci., 50: 11-16.
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The object of this study was to investigate the effect of pruning on heartwood formation in mature Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) trees. Fifty trees were treated by three different intensive pruning regimes: 42, 60 and 70 percentage of defoliation. After five growing seasons numbers of growth rings were counted and the width and the area of sapwood and heartwood were calculated. The results did not show any proportional increase or decrease in the heartwood area or in the number of growth rings in heartwood associated with the pruning. A statistically significant negative effect of pruning was found on the width of the five most recently formed sapwood growth rings. This decreased growth rate did not influence the ratio of sapwood and heartwood. However, it cannot be excluded that the proportion of heartwood may increase during a longer period. It is concluded that pruning is not a practicable silvicultural method for regulating heartwood formation in mature Scots pine trees.
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