Intensive longleaf pine management for hurricane recovery: fourth-year resultsThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
The frequency and intensity of hurricanes affecting the United States has been projected to increase during coming decades, and this rising level of cyclonic storm activity is expected to substantially damage southeastern forests. Although hurricane damage to forests in this region is not new, recent emphasis on longleaf pine (Pinus palustris Mill.) restoration and the increasing number of longleaf pine plantations resulting from such efforts raise questions about both tropical storm effects on this species and suitable strategies and practices for facilitating its recovery from such storms. This study was established to evaluate different methods of quickly returning damaged stands to productive longleaf pine forests following Hurricane Ivan in 2004. After salvage operations cleared the study areas, three herbicides (hexazinone, imazapyr, triclopyr) versus an untreated control were tested for their effects on stand development using artificially regenerated longleaf pine. A fertilizer treatment was also applied on half of the plots. Four years following planting, developing trends show the possible benefits of chemical site preparation on longleaf pine seedling height and ground-line diameter, whereas fertilization has shown no significant effect.