Topic 1: What Is a Forest Plantation?


The area of forest cover has declined by about 30% since the industrial revolution, and an increasing area of the forest remaining has been influenced by humans. To supply trees and wood for a wide range of end-uses, highly ordered plantation forests are increasing in area in many countries. These plantation forests are established with intensive inputs to grow the maximum possible biomass on the crop trees with minimal loss of growth to competing species. This topic reviews the characteristics of plantation forests to identify how they differ from other types of forest in terms of species composition and growth.

Video Lecture

Please view the following video lecture and video for this topic.

3.1 Lecture: What Is a Forest Plantation

3.1 Video: Replanting Considerations – Reversion & Destumping

Topic 1 Reflection Questions

Please answer the following self-reflection questions. After formulating your answers, you may post them online at the Knowledge Café for this course as a way to share your ideas and glean knowledge from other students’ responses.

  1. What characteristics define a plantation forest?
  2. In what ways are plantation forests preferable to more natural forests for the supply of wood for a range of end-uses?
  3. Name three extensively planted tree genera, and discuss their suitability for a range of sites and end-uses

Supplementary Readings


Shepherd, K. R. (1986). Plantation Silviculture. Kluwer Academic Publishers. ISBN: 9789024733798

Mason, W. L. (2004). Plantation silviculture: Multiple-use silviculture in temperate plantation. Forestry Encyclopedia of Forest Sciences, 2, 859-865.

Evans, J. (1982). Plantation Forestry in the Tropics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN: 0-19-854682-3; ISBN: 0-19-854257-7

Articles in Journals

Barrette, M., et al. (2014). Issues and solutions for intensive plantation silviculture in a context of ecosystem management. Forestry Chronicle, 90 (6), 748-762.