Comparison of planted loblolly, longleaf, and slash pine development through 10 growing seasons in central Louisiana--an argument for longleaf pineThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
Two studies were established in central Louisiana to compare development of planted loblolly (Pinus taeda L.), longleaf (P. palustris Mill.), and slash (P. elliottii Engelm.) pine. Study 1 was on a Beauregard silt loam, and Study 2 was on Ruston and McKamie fine sandy loams. After 10 growing seasons, stocking ranged from 1,165 longleaf to 1,606 loblolly pines per ha in Study 1. Slash (9.8 m) and loblolly (8.9 m) pine trees had similar average total heights, and both were taller than longleaf pine (5.3 m). Volume production was comparable between slash (134 m3/ha) and loblolly (111 m3/ha) pine, and longleaf pine (24 m3/ha) had the least volume per ha. In Study 2, stocking ranged from 1,907 longleaf to 2,356 slash pines per ha. Slash (11.2 m) and loblolly (10.8 m) pine trees had similar average total heights, and both were taller than longleaf pine (9.2 m). Volume production was similar between slash (181 m3/ha) and loblolly (162 m3/ha) pine, and both produced more volume per ha than longleaf pine (96 m3/ha). Although outcomes in growth and yield among species were similar in both studies, the magnitude of differences between longleaf versus loblolly and slash pine was greater in Study 1 than Study 2 for several reasons. While longleaf pine had the poorest growth and yield, its early development normally lags behind that of other southern pines, and longleaf pine grew sufficiently well to warrant consideration if other values are taken into account, which are herein discussed.