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A Step Closer to Local Carbon Calculations: Growth Timescales and Linear Relationships for Sand Forest and Woodland Tree Species in Maputaland, South Africa

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DOI: 10.4236/ojf.2014.43029    4,054 Downloads   5,209 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

In Africa, information on time required for plants to develop from seed to mean size and maximum size is scarce. There is also a lack of information regarding accurate relationships between stem diameter, height and canopy dimensions. This type of information is however becoming a real necessity to allow the accurate measurement of carbon stocks and carbon stocks change to qualify for the UNFCCC’s REDD+ mechanism. We evaluated these parameters for 22 Sand Forest and woodland tree species of South Africa’s Maputaland. Results indicated that it takes approximately 66 and 35 years for current dynamics of Sand Forests and woodlands to occur respectively. Based on diameter and growth rates, larger trees of the forests can be older than 600 years, while large woodland trees can reach ages of 900 years. Our evaluation of linear relationships between stem diameter, height and canopy dimensions showed extremely robust results allowing the use of stem diameter to calculate height and canopy dimensions. The results are of interest for carbon related investigations and reconstructing stands dynamics.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Gaugris, J. and Vasicek, C. (2014) A Step Closer to Local Carbon Calculations: Growth Timescales and Linear Relationships for Sand Forest and Woodland Tree Species in Maputaland, South Africa. Open Journal of Forestry, 4, 223-230. doi: 10.4236/ojf.2014.43029.

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