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Sprout initiation and growth for three years after cutting in an abandoned secondary forest in Kyoto, Japan

Imanishi, Ayumi, Morimoto, Junko, Imanishi, Junichi, Shibata, Shozo, Nakanishi, Asami, Osawa, Naoya, Sakai, Shinjiro
Landscape and ecological engineering 2010 v.6 no.2 pp. 325-333
Eurya, Ilex pedunculosa, Lyonia ovalifolia var. elliptica, autumn, cutting, economic development, ecosystems, fuelwood, secondary forests, shoots, sprouting, stumps, tree and stand measurements, trees, woody plants, Japan
Secondary forests in Japan have been abandoned and the ecosystem has degraded since the high economic growth period. We carried out cutting in January in three small areas of a long-abandoned secondary forest and investigated the sprout initiation and growth of woody plants for three years in order to reveal the early stage of sprout regeneration and to understand the sprouting ability and characteristics of each species for effective management. The percentage of sprouted stumps and the number of sprouting shoots was substantially maximized in autumn in the first year. These results suggest that autumn monitoring in the first year after cutting shows the maximum percentage of sprouted stumps and the maximum sprout number when cutting was conducted in the dormant season. With regards to species characteristics, Eurya japonica showed a low percentage of sprouted stumps in the lower plot, where the mean diameter at breast height for this species was smaller than in the other plots. The sprouting ability of E. japonica was deemed to be influenced by parent tree size. Ilex pedunculosa and Lyonia ovalifolia var. elliptica had high percentages of sprouted stumps and many sprouts. These species are useful for obtaining sprouting shoots (e.g., for firewood), but it is difficult to control their sprouting.