Time vs. light: a potentially useable light sum hybrid model to represent the juvenile growth of Douglas-fir subject to varying levels of competition
Substitution of potential useable light sum for time in a commonly used mensurational equation resulted in a better fit to data from a complex vegetation management experiment. The experiment involved Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menzeisii (Mirb.) Franco) as a crop species and a variety of competing species. Site occupancy by competing vegetation varied with time because control operations were intermittently either included or excluded from treatments over a period of 4 years. There were four randomized complete blocks of eight competition control treatments. Potentially useable light sum was estimated using measurements of radiation from a meteorological station that were modified by coefficients representing the ability of the crop plants to use light with varying soil water, vapour pressure deficit, and temperature. Light sums were further reduced by estimated competition for light from competing vegetation. Fits of the model to individual plots within the experiment yielded coefficients that did not differ significantly between competition control treatments, suggesting that the model accounted for significant variations in growth resource availability between treatments. Potentially useable light sum equations provide an integrated link between traditional mensurational modeling and ecophysiological modeling.