Module I Objectives

The objective of this module is to review elements of forest ecology directly relevant to seed and vegetative regeneration and ecosystem processes related to the growth of a forest. An objective of this module is to refresh your understanding of important plant science terminology and concepts. A further objective is to introduce you to the ecosystem paradigm and to the principles of ecosystem ecology as a way to manage trees for restoration or plantation development.

Upon completion of this module, you should be able to:

  • Explain the pattern of the growth of trees individually and in stands as a basis for understanding the dynamics of forest growth and the development of crown classes;
  • Define two contrasting stand structures resulting from forest regeneration (even-aged stands and mixed-age stands) following disturbance;
  • Identify the main strategies for regeneration (seeders and sprouters);
  • Explain the ecosystem paradigm and describe the key ecosystem processes of carbon and nutrient cycling;
  • Define and describe the concept of net primary productivity; and
  • Describe in detail nutrient cycling in forests, and explain how these cycles contribute to maintaining forest productivity.