Title
Crown structure and leaf area of the understorey species **Prunus serotina** Crown structure and leaf area of the understorey species **Prunus serotina**
Author
Faculty/Department
Faculty of Sciences. Biology
Publication type
article
Publication
Berlin ,
Subject
Biology
Source (journal)
Trees: structure and function. - Berlin
Volume/pages
(2009)
ISSN
0931-1890
ISI
000264136900021
Carrier
E
Target language
English (eng)
Full text (Publishers DOI)
Affiliation
University of Antwerp
Abstract
A detailed biometrical study of the exotic understorey invader Prunus serotina (Ehrh.) was carried out in a mixed coniferous forest stand in northern Belgium. Based on detailed destructive measurements of eight selected model trees, allometric relations of tree height, crown projected area, woody and leaf dry mass and leaf area on tree diameter at breast height (DBH) were derived. The scaling-up procedure from the tree to the stand level was done using the frequency distribution of DBH obtained at the selected experimental plot. The vertical and radial distributions of the tree foliage were estimated by the cloud technique. The vertical profile of leaf area showed a bimodal distribution pattern with maxima at heights of 4 and 6 m above the ground. The leaf area index (LAI) of the understorey Prunus serotina as estimated by the described up-scaling procedure (5.1) was significantly higher than the LAI (2.6) as measured by a plant canopy analyser and was also significantly higher than the LAI of the overstorey species Scots pine (1.53.0). The LAI of a neighbouring Rhododendron understorey reached only 1.25. This study emphasises the importance of an exotic understorey species in the total leaf area of mixed coniferous forests which might have important implications for the energy and mass exchanges of the entire forest.
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