Topic 2: Forest Plantation Establishment


This topic covers the theory of plantation establishment from the decision to establish a plantation enterprise to the planting of trees. The steps taken in considering the purpose of the plantation, the selection of species, and the matching of these species to site characteristics are considered. The advantage of exotic and indigenous species is discussed in relation to past experience in plantation enterprises. The topic includes a review of the key aspects of soil and environment that influence species choice. The theory of site preparation and techniques applied is discussed in relation to site characteristics. Students are directed to online resources to view site preparation techniques that demonstrate the application of plantation establishment theory.

Video Lecture

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

3.2 Lecture: Forest Plantation Establishment

3.2 Video 1: Genetic in Bluegum Forestry in Western Australia

3.2 Video 2: Planting Operations in Bluegum Forestry

Topic 2 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. Discuss the key factors influencing choice of species for a plantation enterprise.
  2. What are the advantages and disadvantages of exotic species compared with indigenous species for a plantation enterprise?
  3. On what site types is mounding applied in site preparation?

Supplementary Readings


Evans, J., Youngquist, J. A., Burley, J. (Eds.). (2004). Encyclopedia of Forest Sciences. Academic Press. ISBN: 9780121451608.

This text has several chapters relevant to this module.

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

Articles in Journals

Smith, R.G.B., et al. (2012). A review of site preparation, fertilizer and weeding practices for tropical plantation species with recommendations for whitewood (Endospermum medullosum) in Vanuatu. International Forestry Review, 14 (4), 433-441