SITE CLASSIFICATION FOR THE EVEN - AGED TEAK PLANTATIONS
D P Munaweera
Forestry Development Division, Ministry of Forestry and
The relatively high accuracy possible with growth and yield models for
uniform stands results partly from the precision with which it is possible
to classify site. The height of a uniform stand, at a given age is a good
indicator of the productivity of that type of forest on that particular
site. Hence the construction of height/age curves corresponding to different
site classes is the first step in growth and yield modeling. However the
mean height of a stand is usually sensitive not only to age and site,
but also to stand density. Site for a stand is area specific, where the
site of a particular stand cannot be improved significantly by better
management. Therefore, dominant height which is almost entirely insensitive
to stand density, could be used as a good indicator for site classification.
Dominant height can be defined in various ways, but the definition with
the widest used is that the dominant height of a stand is the mean height
of the 100 thickest stems per hectare.
In this study, when dominant height/age scatter graphs were constructed
separately for each district, it was clearly observed that these diagrams
were similar in some districts and were significantly different compared
for others. The districts and were similar site trend curves were combined
together to give one teak zone where, within one zone, the variation in
dominant height growth is very similar in all districts falling under
that zone. Using this zonal categorization, it was easy to separate the
growth variations among the teak growing areas in Sri Lanka. This zonal
effect may possibly be due to genetic variation, but this cannot be analysed
because the genetic information is not available.
Three zones have been identified for teak growing areas in the country.
This was done using mean dominant height - age graphs, and constructing
maximum, minimum and medium trend curves for each district. These curves
and scatter graphs were compared with each other and grouped into selected
sets using graphical methods. Different zones were identified using this
Once the zonal categorization had been done, each zone was considered
separately for its site classification. This was done using the mean dominant
height-age-site index relationships, which are basic to uniform forest
growth predictions. The relationships are usually referred to simply as
the site index curves for a species in a given environment.
For each zone the site index curves have been constructed using 20 years
as the index age. The Schumacher equation was used in fitting a model
for the medium trend curve. For site index curves both common slope and
common intercept methods were used.
Department of Forestry and Environmental Science,
of Sri Jayewardenepura,Sri Lanka. 1999. All rights reserved.