Silvicultural and genetic influences on planted cypress productivityThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
The potential for baldcypress (Taxodium distichum var. distichum) and pondcypress (T. distichum var. imbricarium) plantations has been further evaluated through two silvicultural and genetic studies in Florida. On a flatwoods site, initial bedding+compost, which resulted in better early growth and survival than just bedding, and in turn no bedding, enhanced soil properties and plantation productivity through 16 years with stand basal area averaging 179 square feet per acre at a 10- x 3-foot spacing and 136 square feet per acre at a 10- x 6-foot spacing and associated tree diameters at breast height (DBH) of 5.5 inches and 5.9 inches, respectively. The best progenies increased stand basal area up to 60 percent over these averages. Coppice growth initiated at ~7 years was similar to the original rotation growth, but 9-year-old coppice wood density was less than that of 16-year-old trees. On an irrigated and fertilized sandhills site after 19 years, pondcypress progenies were much smaller than three types of baldcypress (DBH of 6.8 inches versus 10.5, 11.4, and 11.9 inches, with associated stand basal areas of 73 square feet per acre versus 178, 146, and 237 square feet per acre). Seed orchard CO97 composed of 26 pondcypress progenies, 11 baldcypress provenances, 21 baldcypress progenies, and 7 baldcypress clones can annually produce 400,000 or more seed expected to be ~15 percent more productive than unimproved seed. Commercial cypress plantations on non-wetland sites have potential for producing mulchwood and/or sawtimber in multiple rotations of 10 to 25 years.