Optimal management of larch (Larix olgensis A. Henry) plantations
in Northeast China when timber production and carbon stock
Received: 10 February 2018 /Accepted: 23 April 2018
INRA and Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2018
• Key message The optimal management of larch (Larix olgensis) plantations in Northeast China consisted of 2 or 3
thinnings and a rotation length of 55–61 years when economic profitability, wood production, and carbon sequestration
were simultaneously maximized. Wood production ranged from 5.4 to 11.7 m
, depending on site quality.
• Context L. olgensis is an important tree species in the northeast forest region of China, playing a significant role in the
establishment of fast-growing and high-yielding plantation forests in China. However, the management of these plantations
has not been optimized in previous studies.
• Aims The objective of the study was to find the optimal combinations of thinning times, thinning types, and rotation length for
L. olgensis stands when both timber production and carbon stock are considered.
• Methods First, a growth and yield model was developed to simulate the dynamics of larch plantations. Then, the models were
linked with the Hooke and Jeeves optimization algorithm to optimize forest management for two commonly used planting
densities and three site qualities.
• Results Two thinnings were found to be suitable for larch plantations when the stand density at 10 years was 2125 trees/ha
(corresponding to a planting density of 2500 trees/ha) whereas three thinnings were recommended when the density at 10 years
was 2800 trees/ha (planting density of 3300 trees/ha). When the stand density was 2800 trees/ha, the optimal rotation length was
61, 58, and 55 years for site indices (SI) 12, 16, and 20 m (dominant height at 30 years), respectively. The mean annual wood
production was 5.4 m
for SI 12, 8.2 m
for SI 16, and 11.7 m
for SI 20. The results were nearly the same for the
lower initial stand density. The better the site quality of the stand, the earlier the thinnings were conducted.
• Conclusion In multifunctional forestry, optimal rotation lengths of larch plantations were 10–20 years longer than advised in
the current silvicultural recommendations for Northeast China.
Handling Editor: Andreas Bolte
Contribution of the co-authors Wei Peng developed the growth and
yield model and wrote most of the paper. Timo Pukkala provided help in
simulation and optimization and modified the paper. Xingji Jin helped to
deal with the data.
Fengri Li supervised and coordinated the research, designed and installed
the experiment, and contributed to the writing of the paper.
Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article
(https://doi.org/10.1007/s13595-018-0739-1) contains supplementary
material, which is available to authorized users.
* Fengri Li
Department of Forest Management, School of Forestry, Northeast
Forestry University, Harbin 150040, China
University of Eastern Finland, P.O. Box 111, 80101 Joensuu, Finland
Annals of Forest Science (2018) 75:63