Pine Forest Research

Pine plantations are important to Virginia’s economy and are, therefore, a high priority for scientific study. Applying research results to operational plantations has been the key to enhancing the productivity of our pine forests. We have more than doubled the productivity of Virginia’s pine plantations over the last 60 years.

What We Have Learned

Planting

The first step along the path to increased productivity was the recognition that artificial regeneration (i.e., planting seedlings) was essential. Studies helped us determine the best methods for handling, transporting, and planting seedlings to maximize their survival and early vigor.

Genetics

The next limitation to be recognized was the fact that local seed sources outperform those from more distant locations. This led to the development of the tree improvement program and seed production orchards to most efficiently provide seed for our nurseries.

Silviculture

Studies comparing different practices for establishing and managing pine stands have given us greatly improved methods for controlling competing vegetation, managing soil nutrient resources through fertilization, and selecting and maintaining the best stand configuration through planting density and thinning regimes.

Ongoing Projects

We continue our studies of pine forest subjects like: combinations of thinning and fertilizer for maintaining forest vigor and increasing productivity (in collaboration with the Virginia Tech and North Carolina State Forest Productivity Cooperative); effects of planting density and supplemental planting (interplanting) to maximize product yields; effects of various competition control methods and strategies; planting and genotype deployment patterns to address varying product objectives; performance of containerized seedlings, and a comparison of options for storing and shipping seedlings from the nurseries.


Additional Resources

Learn more about forest inventory at the USDA Forest Service Southern Research Station.

ImageTitleIDDescriptionContent Typedocument-category_hfilter
Development of Loblolly Pine Interplanted One Year After Simulated First-Year Mortality; Jerre Creighton
Development of Loblolly Pine Interplanted One Year After Simulated First-Year Mortality; Jerre CreightonRR-131

Report discusses a study that was installed in the spring of 2007 at Appomattox-Buckingham State Forest to examine the effects of interplanting loblolly pine seedlings in plots with varying levels of simulated seedling mortality in a one-year-old plantation.

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Effects of Planting Date (Month) on Longleaf Pine Survival in Virginia
Effects of Planting Date (Month) on Longleaf Pine Survival in VirginiaRR-134

Report provides an update on the effects of planting date on longleaf pine survival in Virginia.

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Growth of Loblolly Pine Planted at Low Densities
Growth of Loblolly Pine Planted at Low DensitiesRR-135Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 001 A Comparison of Tree Growth and Development Between a Shortleaf and Loblolly Pine Plantation Growing on Nason Soil in Orange County, Virginia; by H. W. Bashore and R. L. Marler
No. 001 A Comparison of Tree Growth and Development Between a Shortleaf and Loblolly Pine Plantation Growing on Nason Soil in Orange County, Virginia; by H. W. Bashore and R. L. MarlerOR-001Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 005 Results of Helicopter Spraying of 2,4,5-T to Control Unwanted Hardwoods in Charlotte County, Virginia; by R. L. Marler
No. 005 Results of Helicopter Spraying of 2,4,5-T to Control Unwanted Hardwoods in Charlotte County, Virginia; by R. L. MarlerOR-005Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 007 Aerial Spraying for Planting Site Preparation on the Buckingham State Forest; W. F. Custard and R. L. Marler
No. 007 Aerial Spraying for Planting Site Preparation on the Buckingham State Forest; W. F. Custard and R. L. MarlerOR-007Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 009 Foliage Spraying to Control Hardwoods: Using a Trailer-Type Sprayer on the Buckingham State Forest; by W. F. Custard and R. L. Marler
No. 009 Foliage Spraying to Control Hardwoods: Using a Trailer-Type Sprayer on the Buckingham State Forest; by W. F. Custard and R. L. MarlerOR-009Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 010 Comparative Growth and Yield of Loblolly and Shortleaf Pine in a Mixed Plantation; W.F. Custard and R. L. Marler
No. 010 Comparative Growth and Yield of Loblolly and Shortleaf Pine in a Mixed Plantation; W.F. Custard and R. L. MarlerOR-010Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 013 Fertilization of Planted Loblolly Pine Seedlings Fails to Increase Height Growth; by W. A. Hubble, Jr., T. A. Dierauf, W. F. Custard and R. L. Marler
No. 013 Fertilization of Planted Loblolly Pine Seedlings Fails to Increase Height Growth; by W. A. Hubble, Jr., T. A. Dierauf, W. F. Custard and R. L. MarlerOR-013Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 014 Plowing Versus Chemical Sod Control; by J. G. Swiand R. L. Marler
No. 014 Plowing Versus Chemical Sod Control; by J. G. Swiand R. L. MarlerOR-014Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 015 Backpack Mist Blower Study; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 015 Backpack Mist Blower Study; by T. A. DieraufOR-015Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 026 Dybar for Planting Site Preparation; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 026 Dybar for Planting Site Preparation; by T. A. DieraufOR-026Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 030 Treating Individual Trees with Dybar; by T. A. Dierauf and R. B. Geddes
No. 030 Treating Individual Trees with Dybar; by T. A. Dierauf and R. B. GeddesOR-030Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 049 Yield of Old Field Shortleaf Pine Plantations; by T. A. Dierauf and J. W. Garner
No. 049 Yield of Old Field Shortleaf Pine Plantations; by T. A. Dierauf and J. W. GarnerOR-049Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 053 Does Interplanting Increase Yield?; by T. A. Dierauf, J. W. Garner and H.L. Olinger
No. 053 Does Interplanting Increase Yield?; by T. A. Dierauf, J. W. Garner and H.L. OlingerOR-053Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 060 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 1; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 060 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 1; by T. A. DieraufOR-060Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 061 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 2; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 061 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 2; by T. A. DieraufOR-061Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 065 Results at Age 23 of a Loblolly Pine Pre-Commercial Thinning Study; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 065 Results at Age 23 of a Loblolly Pine Pre-Commercial Thinning Study; by T. A. DieraufOR-065Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 067 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 3; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 067 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 3; by T. A. DieraufOR-067Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 068 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 4; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 068 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 4; by T. A. DieraufOR-068Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 069 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 5; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 069 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 5; by T. A. DieraufOR-069Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 070 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 6; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 070 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 6; by T. A. DieraufOR-070Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 071 Survival and Growth of Loblolly Pine Seedlings Damaged by an Early Hail Storm; by T. A. Dierauf, R. S. Jenkins, and D. L. Hixson
No. 071 Survival and Growth of Loblolly Pine Seedlings Damaged by an Early Hail Storm; by T. A. Dierauf, R. S. Jenkins, and D. L. HixsonOR-071Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 074 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 7; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 074 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 7; by T. A. DieraufOR-074Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 075 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 8; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 075 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 8; by T. A. DieraufOR-075Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 076 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 9; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 076 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 9; by T. A. DieraufOR-076Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 077 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 10; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 077 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 10; by T. A. DieraufOR-077Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 078 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 11; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 078 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 11; by T. A. DieraufOR-078Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 079 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 12; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 079 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 12; by T. A. DieraufOR-079Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 081 Survival and Growth of Loblolly Pine Seedlings Damaged by an Early Wind Storm; by L. J. Apgar
No. 081 Survival and Growth of Loblolly Pine Seedlings Damaged by an Early Wind Storm; by L. J. ApgarOR-081Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 083 Early Planting, Over-Winter Storage, and Late Planting of White Pine Seedlings; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 083 Early Planting, Over-Winter Storage, and Late Planting of White Pine Seedlings; by T. A. DieraufOR-083Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 084 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 13; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 084 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 13; by T. A. DieraufOR-084Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 085 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 14; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 085 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 14; by T. A. DieraufOR-085Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 086 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 15; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 086 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 15; by T. A. DieraufOR-086Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 087 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 16; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 087 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 16; by T. A. DieraufOR-087Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 088 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 17; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 088 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 17; by T. A. DieraufOR-088Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 089 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No.18; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 089 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No.18; by T. A. DieraufOR-089Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 090 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 19; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 090 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 19; by T. A. DieraufOR-090Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 091 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 20; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 091 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 20; by T. A. DieraufOR-091Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 092 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 21; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 092 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 21; by T. A. DieraufOR-092Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 096 Diameter Growth Following an Understory Prescribed Burn; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 096 Diameter Growth Following an Understory Prescribed Burn; by T. A. DieraufOR-096Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 097 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 22; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 097 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 22; by T. A. DieraufOR-097Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 098 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 23; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 098 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 23; by T. A. DieraufOR-098Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 099 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 24; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 099 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 24; by T. A. DieraufOR-099Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 100 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 25; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 100 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 25; by T. A. DieraufOR-100Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 101 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 26; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 101 Loblolly Pine Release Study Report No. 26; by T. A. DieraufOR-101Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 102 Loblolly Pine Release Response to Complete Elimination of Understory Vegetation; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 102 Loblolly Pine Release Response to Complete Elimination of Understory Vegetation; by T. A. DieraufOR-102Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 106 A Three-year Loblolly Pine Interplanting Study on Site-Prepared Forestland; by T. A. Dierauf
No. 106 A Three-year Loblolly Pine Interplanting Study on Site-Prepared Forestland; by T. A. DieraufOR-106Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 113 Controlling Herbaceous Competition and Tip Moth - Effects A16 Years; by T. A. Dierauf and J. A. Scrivani
No. 113 Controlling Herbaceous Competition and Tip Moth – Effects A16 Years; by T. A. Dierauf and J. A. ScrivaniOR-113Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 117 Planting 1-0 White Pine Seedlings; by T. A. Dierauf and L. A. Chandler
No. 117 Planting 1-0 White Pine Seedlings; by T. A. Dierauf and L. A. ChandlerOR-117Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 119 Ripping to Improve Loblolly Seedling Survival and Growth; by T. A. Dierauf and J. A. Scrivani
No. 119 Ripping to Improve Loblolly Seedling Survival and Growth; by T. A. Dierauf and J. A. ScrivaniOR-119Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 123 White Pine Old-Field Plantation Yields Study; by T. A. Dierauf and J. A. Scrivani
No. 123 White Pine Old-Field Plantation Yields Study; by T. A. Dierauf and J. A. ScrivaniOR-123Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 124 Wide-Spacing Plantings of Loblolly Pine - Age 15 Results; by J. A. Scrivani and W.F. Bowman
No. 124 Wide-Spacing Plantings of Loblolly Pine – Age 15 Results; by J. A. Scrivani and W.F. BowmanOR-124Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
No. 125 Effects of Storage, Handling and Tranportation on Eastern White Pine 1st-Year Survival and Height; by Jerre L. Creighton and Wayne F. Bowman
No. 125 Effects of Storage, Handling and Tranportation on Eastern White Pine 1st-Year Survival and Height; by Jerre L. Creighton and Wayne F. BowmanOR-125Viewresearch-resource-information resource-information
Seven-Year Evaluation	of	Biosolids	as	a	Fertilizer	in	 Mid-Rotation	Loblolly	Pine
Seven-Year Evaluation of Biosolids as a Fertilizer in Mid-Rotation Loblolly PineRR-127

Biosolids are solid and liquid materials produced from the treatment of municipal sewage sludge, commonly applied as a fertilizer material on agricultural fields. Most forestland in Virginia becomes nitrogen-limited as the stand develops. Report summarizes the results of a seven-year-old study to examine the effects of biosolids applied as fertilizers to a mid-rotation loblolly pine plantation in Essex County, showing that pine trees benefit from the biosolids much as they would from traditional inorganic fertilizers.

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Site Prep vs Release for Woody Competition Control in Loblolly Pine: 10-Year Growth and Projected Financial Returns
Site Prep vs Release for Woody Competition Control in Loblolly Pine: 10-Year Growth and Projected Financial ReturnsRR-130

A study of the effects on loblolly pine growth of seven herbicide competition control alternatives was installed at the Appomattox-Buckingham State Forest between July 2005 and August 2007. After 10 years, analysis of variance indicates that hardwood competition control has had a significant (P<0.01) positive effect on pine growth (basal area and volume).

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Surfactant Chemistry
Surfactant ChemistryRR-129

The choice of surfactant can be critical in determining the outcome of an herbicide application. Research report reviews important factors to consider, including solution chemistry, herbicides state, surfactant type and chemistry, and important considerations for glyphosate herbicides. It also includes a case study.

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Use of Systemic Fipronil and Imidacloprid to Control Regeneration Pests of Loblolly Pine; Chris Asaro and Jerre Creighton (published 2011 Entomological Society of America)
Use of Systemic Fipronil and Imidacloprid to Control Regeneration Pests of Loblolly Pine; Chris Asaro and Jerre Creighton (published 2011 Entomological Society of America)

Article written by Chris Asaro and Jerre Creighton with Virginia Department of Forestry for the Entomological Society of America regarding the use of systemic fipronil and imidacloprid to control regeneration pests of loblolly pine.

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