Determinants of stemwood production in Pinus contorta var. latifolia forests: the influence of site quality and stand structure.
Results are reported from a study of leaf area dynamics in 100 plots in stands of lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia, age range 67-134 yr) at two sites: northern Utah (high site quality) and south-central Wyoming (low site quality). Leaf area index (LAI) and site quality were significantly but weakly related. Growth of stem volume was significantly related to LAI, but differences in stand structure contributed to residual variation. Mean tree growth increased with mean leaf area but at a decreasing rate (i.e. leaf area on large trees had low efficiency in producing stemwood volume).