Growth and biomass distribution of cherrybark oak (Quercus pagoda Raf.) seedlings as influenced by light availability
Cherrybark oak (Quercus pagoda Raf.) seedlings were established and raised in the field under four light levels (100 percent. 53 percent, 27 percent or 8 percent of full sunlight) to study the effects of light availability on their shoot growth, biomass accumulation. and biomass distribution. After two growing seasons, greatest stem growth was observed on seedlings which received intermediate light levels, and this growth was associated to a greater accumulation of total seedling biomass and a distribution pattern which balanced accumulation of root and shoot biomass. In contrast, less biomass accumulation and a biomass distribution pattern that favored root growth over stem growth were characteristic of seedlings receiving full sunlight. These results suggest that regeneration of cherrybark oak on mesic sites may be limited by preferential root growth, but reproduction of this species may be amenable to silvicultural practices that improve the light environment through stand manipulation.