Biomass of first and second rotation loblolly pine plantations in the South Carolina Coastal PlainThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
In the South Carolina Coastal Plain, intensive loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) plantation management, without fertilization, was sustainable through two rotations as measured by biomass accumulation. Fixed plot tree inventories and destructive tree sampling of first and second rotation sections of the same plantations were used to produce area based estimates of aboveground, oven-dry tree biomass. First rotation plots in two plantations produced 289 and 242 tonnes/ha at 34 and 36 years after establishment respectively. Second rotation plots of these same stands produced 127 to 152 tonnes/ha at 15 years after establishment. Second rotation crown biomass was 67 to 87 percent of the crown biomass of the first rotation plots at 42 to 44 percent of the age of the first rotation trees. Total aboveground biomass of second rotation plots was 44 to 61 percent of the total aboveground biomass of the first at 42 to 44 percent of the age. Biomass accumulation is at least proportional to age from the first to second rotation; thus these management procedures appear to be sustainable.