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Variable Retention Harvesting: Mortality of Residual Trees and Natural Regeneration of White Spruce Open Access


Other title
White Spruce
Natural Regeneration
Boreal Mixedwood
Tree Mortality
Variable Retention Harvest
Multivariate Regression Tree Analysis
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Solarik, Kevin
Supervisor and department
Lieffers, Victor J. (Renewable Resources)
Examining committee member and department
King, Jane R (Agriculture, Food and Nutritional Science)
Spence, John R (Renewable Resources)
Volney, Winston Jan A. (Canadian Forest Service)
Department of Renewable Resources

Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
In this thesis I examined the impacts of variable retention harvesting on residual tree mortality and natural regeneration of white spruce [Picea glauca (Moench (Voss)] in northern Alberta. The VR was done in four overstory canopy compositions (ranging from deciduous dominated to conifer dominated) and at six rates of canopy retention (2%, 10%, 20%, 50%, 75% and 100%). After 10 years there was 32.9 % mortality of aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) and 16.9 % mortality of spruce in the VR cuts. Mortality of individual trees was greater with low density of trees, in the conifer stands and for trees with short live crowns, which are large and trees near machine corridors. Natural regeneration of spruce was greatest with higher availability of seed trees (>30 ha-1) and on machine corridors, where stocking reached 74%. By contrast, stocking was ≤14% on retention strips, when seed tree density was ≤11 seed trees ha-1.
License granted by Kevin Solarik ( on 2010-08-27T20:43:59Z (GMT): Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of the above terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis, and except as herein provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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