Use of GIS-derived environmental factors in predicting site indices in Japanese larch plantations in Hokkaido

Yasushi Mitsuda, Shigejiro Yoshida, Morio Imada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The objectives of this study were (1) to evaluate the effects of environmental factors derived from GIS on tree-height growth of Japanese larch (Larix kaempferi) and (2) to develop a best-fit regression model for its site index. Based on data from 40 sample plots situated in an even-aged (38 years), pure, and undamaged Japanese larch stand, multiple regression models for a site index of Japanese larch were constructed using environmental factors as independent variables. The average slope gradient, effective relief, distance from ridge, flow accumulation, degree of exposure, shading, solar radiation index, and gravitational water index were used as environmental factors and calculated on GIS using digital elevation model data. These factors were related to the Japanese larch site index through multiple-regression analysis. The result showed that the most effective factor for estimating site index was the degree of exposure. Through a backward stepwise procedure, the degree of exposure, shading, and avera ge slope gradient were selected for a best-fit regression model. This model explained 72% of the variance in site index, with standard error estimates of 1.75 m. This strong relationship suggests that GIS-derived environmental factors can be used to predict site indices of Japanese larch.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-93
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Forest Research
Volume6
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 16 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Forestry

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