A Prince Edward Island site preparation study

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University of New Brunswick


Site preparation methods for Prince Edward Island cutovers were examined in the summer of 1990. Cutovers were divided into four classes and conditions and constraints associated with site preparation were studied. Various site preparation methods were studied in short-term assessments. These include the C & H plow, the mechanical disc trencher, and sharkfin barrels and anchor chains which were dragged by both a D6D tractor and a Clark 665F Ranger skidder. The C & H plow properly prepared a fresh cutover with heavy slash loads - 96.8% of the micro-sites assessed were considered to be acceptable planting sites. The powered disc trencher was unable to properly prepare sites which contained green slash as it was unable to break through the manually wlndrowed slash to reach the forest floor. The skidder, with the aid of its winch, dragged the sharkfin barrels and anchor chains and properly prepared a cutover site with light to moderate slash loads. Concern was raised as to whether a skidder of this size (116 hp) could drag the chains without deteriorating rapidly. A D6D tractor dragged the sharkfin barrels and anchor chains through green slash loads of 23, 25 and 27 tonnes per hectare. An acceptable number of micro-sites were created in each case although concern was raised on a portion of one site as to whether there was enough mineral soil disturbance to act as a deterrent to the H.congener, the seedling debarking weevil. These methods were then compared and contrasted to present site preparation methods as well as methods presently not in use on the Island. The major observations drawn from the comparisons was that the anchor chains appear to the most practical and acceptable method of preparing the widest variety of sites on P.E.I. KEY WORDS: C & H plow, Cutover, Eden brush piler, Hylobius congener Marden roller, Mechanical disc trencher, Mechanical method, Micro-sites, Prescribed burn, Prince Edward Island, Rome discs, Root rake, seedling debarking weevil, Sharkfin barrels and anchor chains, Site preparation.