Canadian Forest Service Publications

Research on hybrid poplars and willow species for fast-growing tree plantations: Its importance for growth and yield, silviculture, policy-making and commercial applications. 2013. Larocque, G.R.; DesRochers, A.; Larchevêque, M.; Tremblay, F.; Beaulieu, J.; Mosseler, A.; Major, J.E.; Gaussiran, S.; Thomas, B.R.; Sidders, D.; Périnet, P.; Kort, J.; Labrecque, M.; Savoie, P.; Masse, S.; Bouman, O.T.; Kamelchuk, D.; Benomar, L.; Mamashita, T.; Gagné, P. For. Chron. 89:32-41.

Year: 2013

Issued by: Laurentian Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 34445

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Mark record


There is a growing interest in fast-growing hybrid poplar and willow plantations in Canada. This interest can be explained both by the rapid growth rate and high yield potential of this type of production system. However, their establishment and maintenance require considerable investments. Research efforts on productivity comparisons between different clones or species, breeding, physiology, nutrition, silviculture, pest management, harvesting methods, social and economic issues and industrial transformation contribute to maximizing fibre production and minimizing production costs. The objective of this paper is to briefly describe a number of current or recently completed research studies on fast-growing hybrid poplar and willow plantations and to discuss their utility and impacts for practical applications.

Plain Language Summary

The high yield potential of fast-growing hybrid poplar and willow plantations contributes to the growing interest in these plantations in Canada. However, the establishment and maintenance of these plantations require considerable investments. This research aims to optimize those investments. This article, resulting from the collaboration of some twenty researchers, provides an overall picture of various types of research work in Canada and presents their impact for practical application purposes. The research orientations discussed include:

  • productivity of the different clones or species;
  • breeding;
  • silviculture;
  • pest management;
  • harvesting methods;
  • socio-economic aspects;
  • industrial processing to maximize fibre production and optimize production costs.

The data contained in this article can provide a basis for discussion on the relevance of these types of plantations.