- Beck, Donald E.
Southeastern Forest Experiment Station, Asheville, NC
In many parts of the Appalachians, harvest of trees below sawlog size returns a very low or even a negative income. Selection thinning, or thinning of dominants, to harvest merchantable trees and release smaller trees for future growth may be one limited management alternative to lessen the problem. In one case study, subdominant trees of varying size and relative position in the stand responded to release and developed into high-quality sawlog trees. Total yields were less 30 years after thinning than would be expected had the stand been thinned from below to favor the dominant trees, However, the earlier cash-flow and greatly reduced number of trees below sawlog size harvested under the method may make it an attractive alternative under some circumstances.