However, the dbh was not significant in any of the individual Erastin stands if the crown surface area was in the model. Finally, (iii) significantly different intercepts of the stand’s common relationship between leaf area and crown surface area were found. The latter fact was accounted for, by inserting the dominant height as stand variable into the final general model (Eq. (14)). Furthermore, the model was rearranged and the social position of trees was also included (Eqs. (15) and (16)). The fact that at a given dominant height, the ratio hdom/dbh describes the social position of the tree in the stand, with high ratios for poor social positions (crown
classes) and vice versa, may be the reason, why also a few other authors ( Valentine et al., 1994 and Kenefic and Seymore, 1999) also published models of high qualities with both, dbh or basal area and crown variables, as independent variables. Eq. (16) is used to depict this
check details relationship for the lowest and the highest dominant height of the investigated stands (Fig. 2). Clearly, at a given dominant height, i.e., in a given stand, and at a given social position (hdom/dbh) the leaf area per crown surface area decreases with increasing crown surface area, i.e., crown size. This is very much in line with Assmann’s (1970) expectation that within a crown class, the larger crowns assimilate less
Cediranib (AZD2171) efficient, because of their higher “proportion of strongly respiring shoots”, i.e., the ratio crown surface area to cubic crown content decreases. That, on the other hand, a tree with a given crown surface area has the more leaf area the better its crown class (lower hdom/dbh ratio) is, was expected. Unfortunately, the early investigations of Burger, 1939a and Burger, 1939b on needle mass and crown size do not consider crown class as an influential variable. However, using his results, and assuming a specific leaf area of 4 m2 per kg needle mass (from Hager and Sterba, 1985 for dominant trees), comparable results can be shown, namely a LA/CSA ratio of about 0.8 and only minor differences in this ratio between the two investigated stands, which differed clearly in age (98 and 132 years respectively), in site quality, and in density. These differences resulted clearly in different average crown surface areas, but not so in the average LA/CSA ratio. As an estimator for individual tree leaf area within stands, crown surface area calculated from Pretzsch’s (2001) crown model for Norway spruce was even slightly better than sapwood area at breast height (R2 = 0.656 compared with 0.600). The main advantage of crown surface area as compared to sapwood area is that it can be estimated in a non-destructive way without coring.