Changes in the species composition and structure of the herb layer of a thermophilous oak forest subject to clear cutting

Hieronim Andrzejewski


Changes in the herb layer of a thermophilous oak forest (Potentillo albae-Quercetum), subject to clear cutting and artificial reforestation with Scotch pine monoculture, were analysed by a comparative method. It was found that cutting of a tree stand and underbrush did not destroy phytocoenose totally. Floristically-rich clearance communities resembled in their composition and structure the ground layer of an natural form of an oak forest. The regress of the herb layer took place several years later in a young pine stand. Then, a compact tree canopy highly restricted light inflow to the bottom of a forest. Later, thinning of a forest stand enabled the herb layer to regenerate. Nevertheless, even 60 years after clear cutting it significantly differed from the herb layer of a natural oak forest.


thermophilous oak forest; clear cutting; ground-layer changes

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