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Research article2010Peer reviewed

Long-term effects of mechanized stump treatment against Heterobasidion annosum root rot in Picea abies

Thor, Magnus; Stenlid, Jan; Oliva Palau, Jonàs


Airborne Heterobasidion annosum(Fr.) Bref. sensu lato infections can be controlled by winter thinning or by mechanically spreading urea orPhlebiopsis gigantea(Fr.) Jülich spores on stump surfaces during summer thinning operations. The long-term outcomes of these control methods when applied as part of the conventional forest operations are unclear. We studied the rot incidence and population structure ofH. annosumin plots ofPicea abies(L.) Karst. thinned in winter or thinned in summer with and without treatment of the stumps. Plots were distributed among 11 stands in Sweden representing two different land use histories: forest and agricultural. After 13years, the effect of stump treatment on rot incidence was only evident in stands on former agricultural land. In stands planted on former forest land with higher levels of preexisting rot than on former agricultural land, the expansion of preexisting genets ofH. annosummight have masked the effects of stump protection. In former forest land, unprotected summer plots showed a greater diversity ofH. annosumgenotypes and a smaller number of trees infected by each genet than in protected plots, suggesting that protection treatments prevented the establishment of new genets, which may result in a reduced rot incidence in the future.

Published in

Canadian Journal of Forest Research
2010, Volume: 40, number: 6, pages: 1020-1033
Publisher: NRC Research Press (Canadian Science Publishing)