Module 1: Introduction to Silviculture

Silvics of Largetooth Aspen

(Populus grandidentata Michx.)

Common names:
- aspen, poplar, bigtooth aspen

Field identification aids:
- large teeth around the entire edge of leaf
- smooth green bark when immature; dark grey and furrowed when older

Average mature tree:
- 40 to 60 years old
- 12 m to 18 m (40' to 60') tall
- 30 cm to 48 cm (12" to 18") in diameter at breast height

Maximum life span:
- 60 years

Shade tolerance:
- very intolerant

- shallow spreading lateral roots

- not wind firm

- reproduces by seed, sprouting, and by suckering of roots
- tree may begin to produce seed as early as 20 years old, with full crop production after 30 years
- good seed crop every 4 to 5 years
- best seed germination occurs on moist mineral soil under full sunlight

Growing sites:
- range from moderately drained to dry
- best growth on well-drained loam soils
- usually found on recent cutovers and burned sites

Associated species:
- trembling aspen, white birch, grey birch, pin cherry, white spruce, and balsam fir on well drained soils
- occasionally found in pure stands

Principal damaging agents:
- hypoxylon canker, forest tent caterpillar, satin worm

- largetooth aspen comprises 1.2% of the merchantable volume in Nova Scotia
- short-lived tree that is capable of rapid growth on favorable sites
- wood can be used for pulpwood, pallets, and fuelwood



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