Clearcuts & sustainability

dwheeler at dwheeler at
Wed Oct 21 11:52:40 EST 1998

In article <Pine.GSO.4.02A.9810201641410.7813-100000 at>,
  "Theodore M. Seeber" <seebert at> wrote:
> On 19 Oct 1998, Susan Gordanier wrote:
> > In <MPG.1093a375e3b8e4c2989a7d at>, larryc at (Larry Caldwell) writes:
> > >
> > >Clearcutting actually promotes douglas fir seedling survival.  D. fir
> > >will not regenerate under a canopy.
> >
> > Why then in a natural forest, thick canopy and all, do
> > young firs grow on motherlogs?
> Because they aren't "young firs", they are the branches of the motherlog
> struggling to survive.
> Ted
Sorry Ted. By definition most trees are dead by the time they hit the forest
floor. The one exception is Coastal redwood (Sequoia sempervirens), which can
regenerate from stems on the trunk.

I have seen once instance of a Western hemlock which was mostly knocked over
in a windstorm (but not completely) which had several large stems growing
from what previously were branches. However, even today these stems are only
about 12-15 inches in diameter, and the tree is not long for this world, I

Douglas fir _does_ regenerate on nurse logs (mother logs?), but it is a
situation rarely seen today, as it requires old-growth characteristics. When
a 6-10 foot diameter Douglas fir falls, it tends to open a lot of canopy. Too
bad these are so seldom seen anymore.

Daniel B. Wheeler

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