An analysis of site preparation for the establishment of black spruce plantations in northwestern New Brunswick

Thumbnail Image



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


University of New Brunswick


Three site preparation techniques are considered for the purpose of establishing black spruce (Picea mariana (Mill.) B.S.P.) on softwood, mixed wood and hardwood sites in northwestern New Brunswick. These are: a) herbicide treatment; b) scarification and c) prescribed burning. These three approaches are examined with respect both to their effects on the ecosystem of the area and to their effectiveness for site preparation. It is concluded that for softwood sites, prescribed burning following a complete clear cut will destroy the competing vegetation and facilitate planting. On mixed wood and hardwood sites, the most effective system appears to be a combination of site preparation by crushing with cleated rollers to down the trees left standing after a commercial clear cut, followed by prescribed burning to dispose of the slash. The use of herbicides is considered to be unnecessary, since it must be followed by either prescribed burning or the above-mentioned combination of crushing and prescribed burning, depending upon the site.