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Open Life Sciences

formerly Central European Journal of Biology

Editor-in-Chief: Ratajczak, Mariusz

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Volume 5, Issue 4 (Aug 2010)


Identification of the main site factors and management intensity affecting the establishment of Short-Rotation-Coppices (SRC) in Northern Italy through stepwise regression analysis

Sara Bergante
  • CRA — Agricultural Research Council, PLF — Research Unit for Wood Production Outside Forests, I-15033, Casale Monferrato (AL), Italy
  • Email:
/ Gianni Facciotto
  • CRA — Agricultural Research Council, PLF — Research Unit for Wood Production Outside Forests, I-15033, Casale Monferrato (AL), Italy
  • Email:
/ Gianfranco Minotta
  • University of Turin — Department AGROSELVITER, I-10095, Grugliasco (TO), Italy
  • Email:
Published Online: 2010-05-28 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11535-010-0028-y


Data collected from 183 poplar and 102 willow SRC experimental plots, located in Central-North Italy, were subjected to stepwise regression analysis to acquire information on the environmental factors affecting plant survival and productivity in the first two-year rotation cycle. Nine Populus ×canadensis Mönch, eight P. deltoids Bartr. clones and four hybrids of Sali× matsudana Koidz were included in analysis. Independent variables were: annual and seasonal water availability (rainfall and irrigation), annual mean air temperature, soil texture, pH, N and organic matter content, planting density and management intensity. Dependent variables were: a) mean annual yield during the first two-year rotation cycle in tons per hectare per year of dry matter (Odt·ha−1·y−1); b) plant survival at the end of the second year from planting (%). Water availability resulted the main variable driving plant survival and biomass production in both poplar and willow clones. Water availability appeared to be the principal factor affecting the establishment of poplar and willow energy plantations in the Po valley. Possible variations in the rainfall regime consequent to climate changes could seriously influence land suitability to SRC. Experimental data also indicate that choice of planting density may increase the biomass yield during the first two-year especially with P. deltoides clones.

Keywords: Biomass production; Poplar; Willow; Short rotation coppice; Soil texture; Climate factors; Soil nutrient contents

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About the article

Published Online: 2010-05-28

Published in Print: 2010-08-01

Citation Information: Open Life Sciences, ISSN (Online) 2391-5412, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11535-010-0028-y. Export Citation

© 2010 Versita Warsaw. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0)

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