Kuznetsova, T., Tilk, M., Ots, K., Lukjanova, A. and Pärn, H. 2009. The Growth of Lodgepole Pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia Engelm.) in a Reclaimed Oil Shale Mining Area, Abandoned Agricultural Land and Forestland.   Baltic Forestry, 15 (2): 186-194

The main objective of the study was to analyse lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia Engelm.) growth in relation to soil nutrients in a reclaimed oil shale mining area (ROSMA), abandoned agricultural land (AAL) and forestland (FL). The growth–soil interactions and soil–needle chemical relationships were analysed and compared in lodgepole pine plantations at various sites. The impact of soil conditions on tree growth was significant; the height and diameter of trees were different between the studied sites. Despite the higher P and K concentrations in the soil in ROSMA, the concentrations of these elements in needles were lower compared to the AAL and FL. This may be caused by the high value of soil pH and K / Ca antagonism. Although the concentrations of the elements in the needles were lower in ROSMA, the needles were longer and heavier. This was possibly due to the higher N and P use efficiency in the lodgepole pine plantation on the ROSMA. The growth of lodgepole pine was better in more fertile environments, in our study the AAL or on the clay substrates of ROSMA compared to the FL.

Key words: lodgepole pine, growth, biomass, nutrient concentration, soil type