Natural regeneration and ecological succession in Pinus kesiya watershed plantations in northern Thailand : implications on plantation management

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Title: Natural regeneration and ecological succession in Pinus kesiya watershed plantations in northern Thailand : implications on plantation management
Author: Kiianmaa, Sampsa
Other contributor: Helsingin yliopisto, Maatalous-metsätieteellinen tiedekunta, Metsäekologian laitos
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry, Department of Forest Ecology
Helsingfors universitet, Agrikultur- och forstvetenskapliga fakulteten, Institutionen för skogsekologi
Publisher: Helsingfors universitet
Date: 2005
Language: eng
Thesis level: master's thesis
Discipline: Skogsekologi (tropisk skogsvård)
Forest Ecology (Tropical Silviculture)
Metsäekologia (trooppinen metsänhoito)
Abstract: Establishment of Pinus kesiya Roy. ex Gord. plantations in Thailand began in the 1960s by the Royal Forest Department. The aim was to reforest abandoned swidden areas and grasslands in order to reduce erosion and to produce timber and fuel wood. Today there are about 150, 000 ha of P. kesiya plantations in northern Thailand. Most of these plantations cannot be harvested due to a national logging ban. Previous studies have suggested that Pinus kesiya plantations posses a capability as a foster environment for native broadleaved tree species, but little is known about the extent of regeneration in these plantations. The general aim of the study was to clarify the extent of forest regeneration and interactions behind it in Pinus kesiya plantations of the Ping River basin, northern Thailand. Based on the results of this study and previous literature, forest management proposals were produced for the area studied. In four different pine plantation areas, a total of seven plantations were assessed using systematic data collection with clustered circular sample plots. Vegetation and environmental data were statistically analysed, so as to recognise the key factors affecting regeneration. Regeneration had occurred in all plantations studied. Regeneration of broadleaved trees was negatively affected by forest fire and canopy coverage. A high basal area of mature broadleaved trees affected the regeneration process positively. Forest fire disturbance had a strong effect also on plantation structure and species composition. Because of an unclear future forest management setting as regards forest laws in Thailand, a management system that enables various future utilisation possibilities and emphasises local participation is recommended for P. kesiya watershed platations of northern Thailand.
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