The Evolution of USDA Forest Service Experimental Forest Research on Northern Conifers in the Northeast
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Journal of Forestry
The degraded stand pictured in this 1955 USDA Forest Service photograph from Maine was dominated by balsam fir (Abies balsamea), red maple (Acer rubrum), paper birch (Betula papyrifera), and American beech (Fagus grandifolia). Stands such as these were typical of second-growth, lowland spruce–fir (Picea–Abies) forests in the Northeast following repeated high grading in the 1800s and early 1900s (Judd 1997). In light of concerns about the sustainability of the eastern spruce–fir cover type, the Forest Service began researching these forests in 1926 at the 1,863-acre Gale River Experimental Forest (EF) in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Marinus Westveld, now known as the "Father" of spruce–fir silviculture (Berven et al. 2013), oversaw studies on partial cutting at the Gale River EF with a focus on increasing the softwood component of degraded mixedwood stands similar to the one shown here (e.g., Westveld 1930).
Kenefic, Laura S.; Rogers, Nicole S. 2017. The Evolution of USDA Forest Service Experimental Forest Research on Northern Conifers in the Northeast. Journal of Forestry. 115(1): 62-65. https://doi.org/10.5849/jof.15-133.