Canadian Forest Service Publications

Crown shyness in lodgepole pine stands of varying stand height, density and site index in the upper foothills of Alberta. 2006. Fish, H.; Lieffers, V.J.; Silins, U.; Hall, R.J. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 36(9): 2104-2111.

Year: 2006

Issued by: Northern Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 26329

Language: English

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Crown shyness is the empty space between crowns in fully stocked stands that is not related to tree-fall gaps. The objectives of this study were to determine the stand and site factors that control crown shyness in lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta Dougl. ex Loud.) stands and to evaluate whether stands experiencing crown shyness compensate for leaf area losses by maintaining longer crowns. We measured canopy closure (i.e., the inverse of crown shyness), crown radius and length, and green litterfall in stands of various height, relative density, and site index. Canopy closure decreased with stand height and increased with site index and relative density. Green litterfall increased with height and relative density. Crown radius and crown length reached a plateau by 8–10 m height, despite increased spacing between tree boles with increasing stand height. Crown radius increased with height and site index but declined with relative density and slenderness coefficient. Crown length also increased with height and site index but declined with slenderness coefficient. Despite the fact that, in tall stands, where >50% of the sky was not covered by crowns, there was not an accompanying increase in crown length to take advantage of the apparent increase in light transmission to the lower crown.