Espacement Trials of Coastal Species (EP1206.01-.08)


The British Columbia Ministry of Forests is a member of the Stand Management Cooperative (SMC).  A main objective of the SMC is to design, establish, and maintain a regional program of integrated research on various aspects of intensive stand management.  Of particular interest are stands that have been under stocking control from an early age, and that include a wide range of initial spacings.  In 1987, nine plantations were established as Type III espacement trials by John Barker and Steve Joyce of Western Forest Products (WFP).  Although SMC requires only plantations of Douglas-fir or western hemlock, WFP chose to use species more typically grown in the areas, including western red cedar (2 sites), yellow cedar (2 sites), Sitka spruce (1 site) and amabalis fir (1 site). As well, in 1989, two Type III plantations were established by McMillan Bloedel, 1 with yellow cedar and 1 with amabilis fir, planted at higher elevations. These installations are not part of the SMC.


  1. Provide plantations of minor species (western redcedar, yellow cedar, amabilis fir, and Sitka spruce) suitable for future installation of silvicultural research studies, with a wide range of initial spacings.
  2. Provide areas for future destructive testing of wood grown under a wide range of initial spacings.
  3. Provide an opportunity to assess results of the best currently available stand establishment practices, over a wide range of densities.
  4. Provide relatively large areas for visual demonstration of spacing effects.


Permanent plots were established in 1995 and 1996 in the Type III plantations that had been planted at the various sites on Vancouver Island: in 1987 within Tree Farm Licenses of WFP including 2 installations near Holberg (Simpson and Ronning), 3 near Port McNeill (Misty 920, 930 and 940), and one on southern Vancouver Island near Jordan River (Sombrio); and in 1989 at 2 locations within TFL 39 south of Schoen Lake Provincial Park (Upper Adam).  Planting densities include 240, 480, 720, 1090, 1680 and 2990 stems/ha (6.4, 4.6, 3.7, 3.0, 2.4 and 1.8 m spacings, respectively).  Plot size is variable, depending on density.