Ecological - Second Order
Studies in 12- to 15- year- old western larch stands at Coram Experimental Forest in northwestern Montana show that condition of the seedbed at the time of seedling establishment strongly influences seedling development. Larch regenerates abundantly, grows rapidly, and becomes dominant where prescribed burning or mechanical scarification has reduced the amount of competing vegetation. In contrast, Douglas- fir is less sensitive to seedbed conditions for both establishment and growth. With reduced competition from larch, it subsequently dominates stands where seedbeds had little or no preparation.