Wood Properties of Twenty Highly Ranked Radiata Pine Seed Production Parents Selected for Growth and Form
Keywords:Genetics, heritability, juvenile wood, <i>Pinus radiata</i>, selection criteria, wood quality
AbstractTwenty highly ranked radiata pine (Pinus radiata D. Don) seed production parent trees, grown under a commercial sawlog regime, were destructively assessed at rotation age (27 years) for wood quality traits significant to solid-wood and veneer products, including: juvenile-wood density, density variation, juvenile-wood spiral grain, compression wood, and appearance characteristics such as within-ring internal checking and resin pockets. Traits varied considerably among parents, which is reasonable since breeding efforts in New Zealand have, until recently, focused primarily on stem productivity and form. Parental information is useful for many wood properties owing to their high heritabilities in radiata pine (usually 50-80%); thus production forests established using advanced-generation genetic materials can also be expected to be variable in wood properties. Like other fastgrown pines, much of the radiata pine crop is juvenile wood, and an important challenge for tree improvement is to ensure that juvenile wood properties meet processor and end-user requirements.
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