Management of Chir Pine (Pinus roxburghii)

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MANAGEMENT OF CHIR PINE

Ø    Local Name: Chir
Ø    Trade Name: Chir Pine
Ø    Scientific Name:      Pinus roxburghii
Ø    It is the most conspicuous and important constituent of sub-tropical Himalayan pine forests.
Ø    Chir Forest occupies generally between 3000′-5500′ Elevation.
Ø    It is found in Abbottabad, Mansehra, Butrasi, Shinkari, Dadar, Haripur, Malakand, Bunair, Dir Lower, Swat, Lower Hills of Murree & Kahuta, Valley of AJK, Gadoon, Mardan District, Orakzai Agency, Balakot, Bajaur.
    DESCRIPTION
1.               The crown is rounded.
2.               Needles are in three, 20 to 30 cm long.
3.               The bole is straight and erect.
4.               It is light-demander.
5.               Ripe cone appear during April-May.
6.               Open and shed seed in hot and dry weather.
7.               Cones are collected in March-April.
8.               Fair seed year occurs every 2-3 years.
9.               A good seed year once in 4 or 5 years.
10.           Seed is winged.
11.           No. of sees in each cone 40-50.
12.           Seed weight varies from 8800 to 12,500 Kg.
13.           Seeds retain viability for one year.
14.           Germination capacity of fresh seed is 75-85%.
15.           Natural Regeneration occurs readily on bare mineral soils.
16.           It is frost hardy and fire resistant.
17.           This is considered a fast-growing tree.
18.           Yields of 7 to 14 m3/Ra/year are recorded on sites of different quality.


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    WOOD PROPERTIES
1.       Colour:         Sapwood white, Heartwood light red, turning to reddish or yellowish brownish-are
2.               Strength:       Moderately hard, Heavy
3.               Silvicultural System: Chir Forest are managed under shelterwood compartment system.
4.               Rotation:      120 years     
5.               Regeneration: 20 to 25 years.
    PERIODIC BLOCKS
The entire crop is divided into four period blocks: PB. I, II, III, IV.
·       PB I: (a)     These areas comprise of a mature crop, which are prescribed for felling and regeneration.
 (b)  Such area is of two kinds:
            i.       One in which felling has taken place
            ii.      Other which is due for felling
·       PB II:      Comprises of a predominating middle-aged to mature crop which will be due for felling only after 25 to 30 years.
·       PB III:     Consists of largely young to middle-aged crop in the age of 30 to 60 years.
·       PB IV:     Composed of a young crop in the age of 1 to 30 years.
    FELLINGS IN PERIODIC BLOCK I AREAS
Ø  Fellings in these areas are carried out in two phases:-
(a)            Seeding felling
(b)            Final felling
(a)      Seeding feedings:-
1.     About 20 to 30 trees per hectare are retained as seed bearers. Their number is more on southern and warmer aspects.
2.     Uniform spacing of these seed bearers is ensured.
3.     While selecting seed bearers, middle-aged, healthy trees are preferred.
4.     Compact groups of regeneration up to 20 cm diameter, having a minimum area of 0.25 hectare are retained as a part of future crop.
5.     Suitable gaps are created in the canopy so as to induce regeneration.
(b)      Final Fellings:
1.  These fellings are undertaken only when the seedlings have attained a height of about 4 meters.
2.  All seed bearers are removed during final fellings.
3.  Certain seed bearers may have to be retained as a safety measure in patches where regeneration is not upto the mark
4.  Before felling; the trees are lopped so as to minimize damage to the young crop.
5.  Care is also taken to avoid damage to the regeneration, during extraction operations.
6.  During final fellings, all unhealthy poles, saplings and seedlings with stunted growth shall also the removed.
    SUBSIDIARY SILVICULTURAL OPERATIONS
1.               All unfit and inferior trees are removed.
2.               The felling debris is cut up, collected in heaps in places where it will cause least damage and subsequently burnt.
3.               Weeding, bush cutting and cleaning operations are carried out as required.
4.               The existing Natural Regeneration may have to be supplemented by planting seedlings.
5.               All areas under the process of Regeneration are closed to grazing/browsing for a period of 10 to 15 years.
6.               If required, light thinnings are carried out in P.B. III & P.B. IV areas.
    NATURAL REGENERATION
1.               In nature, seed falls April to June.
2.               Seed bearers are healthy and suitably spaced about 20 – 25 meter apart.
3.               The area is protected against fire, grazing/browsing and careless grass cutting for 10 to 15 years.
4.               Young seedlings are well weeded and cleaned.

5.               20 to 30 seed bears are retained per hectare.
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For Correction and Improvements please use the comments section below.


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