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Research article2015Peer reviewed

Crown radius of pedunculate oak (Quercus robur L.) depending on stem size, stand density and site productivity

Attocchi, Giulia; Skovsgaard, Jens Peter


Crown size is a good indicator of the growth potential of trees and is often used in forest management for outlining thinning guidelines or constructing forest growth models. The aim of this study was to analyse mean crown radius as a function of stem size, stand density and site productivity in even-aged stands of pedunculate oak (Quercus robur L.). Data included measurements of 620 trees from 53 plots in nine thinning experiments and one operational stand in Sweden, Denmark and Great Britain, representing a wide spectrum of thinning practices ranging from the strictly unthinned control to extremely heavy thinning with essentially solitary trees. Three sets of models were constructed based on different predictor variables, including indicators of individual stem size (diameter at breast height, DBH), stand density/thinning grade (quadratic mean diameter and stand basal area) and site productivity (stand top height). Preliminary results indicated a significant effect of DBH and (nominal) thinning grade on crown radius. The response pattern of the final models indicated an increasing crown radius with increasing DBH, with increasing thinning grade (decreasing stand density) and with decreasing site productivity. The models are valid for predicting the crown radius of pedunculate oak in even-aged forest stands.


thinning; silviculture; crop trees; crown radius; oak

Published in

Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research
2015, Volume: 30, number: 4, pages: 289-303