The Impact of Strip Clearcutting on Red Oak Seedling Development

by

Jamie L. Schuler, Michael Boyce, and Gary W. Miller

Jamie Schuler, 304-293-3896, jamie.schuler@mail.wvu.edu

Abstract – Manipulation of light levels is critical of the establishment and subsequent development of oak reproduction. Oftentimes, a shelterwood and/or midstory removal treatment are prescribed to provide the necessary light conditions to favor oak species. In an attempt to develop alternative techniques, we utilized strip clearcutting as a method of regenerating oak in upland oak stands. In 2015, we harvested a mature mixed oak-yellow-poplar-black cherry stand by alternating 2 chain wide cut and leave strips to provide a light gradient to examine the conditions that are favorable for oak seedling development. We will present the impact of the strip clearcutting on understory light levels and their effect on northern red oak seedlings after one growing season.