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Forestry and Wood


Institutional and Technical publications

Institutional and Technical publications

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Research centers: Forestry and Wood

As part of the activities of the National Rural Network 2014-2020 (sub-project Foreste 22. 2) the Centre carried out an inventory of silviculture for wood production in Italy. The inventory was based on a two-stage sampling strategy, using IUTI (Italian Land Use Inventory) points in the first phase and photo-interpretation of part of the stands previously identified plus ground control in the second phase.

Questionnaire - What do you think about forest?

Research centers: Forestry and Wood

As part of an international project we are carrying out a questionnaire on the degree of awareness of the benefits that the forest can make. It takes little (estimated time, 1 minute) but it is very useful for us.

The questionnaire is addressed to everyone, although we are particularly interested in finding out what school-age children think about it. We therefore ask you to pass it on to friends and relatives and especially to those with school-age children.

For younger children (under 10 years), we have developed a simpler version in order to get to know their thoughts too.

  1. Adult version

  2. Children version

Coppice today: which management beyond definitions?

Year of publication: 2017

Research centers: Forestry and Wood

The economical-social change, the competitive-ness and “modernity” of fossil fuels, their prompt diffusion are the concurrent factors that heavily reduced the use of coppice firewood and charcoal since the fifties of the last century. Therefore, a shift took place in the last 60 years from the homogeneous area made of intensively managed, young stands to the more and more differentiated standing crops, as for structural features, growing stocks and growth dynamics, even though all of them originated from a common matrix. Nowadays, the former coppice area includes stands managed under lengthened rotations, outgrown coppices, the coppice conversion into high forest. The 2005 National Forest Inventory reported that 87% of standing crops was included in the age-classes 20-40 and over 40 years, with variable percentages according to tree species, from beech up to thermophilous oaks. He-re, the basis of historical judgment on the coppice system, the reasons underlying the outgrown coppice esta-blishment, the current standards of cultivation under even doubled rotations, are critically analyzed. The current demand to reduce the use of fossil fuels by renewable bio-energy sources and to face up the effects of climate change (unpredictability, rainfall reduction, higher air temperature, prolonged droughts, water stress, fire risk) give a new boost to the coppice system. Main goals today are to: (i) optimize the capacity of firewood production to reduce the heavy deficit at the country level; (ii) make the best use of the regenera -tion ability inherent to the system against the more sensitive regeneration from seed in the changing environ-ment. The positive growth trend, the maintenance of resprouting ability as well as of vital stools density in the outgrown coppice area, address to a sustainable increase of rotations up to the age of 50 years, as already highlighted by a few regional regulations. It would allow the recovery of a current volume increment of 1-1.5 M m3 to internal firewood production. Unsuitable stand locations or bio-ecological conditions as well as stands already under conversion into high forest are obviously excluded. The approach to coppice system maintenance within the variable territorial context, the possible innovation and the definition of flexible sil-vicultural models are then outlined. The useful updating and harmonization of forest regulations are finally recalled.

Productive potential and management of coppice stands in Italy

Research centers: Forestry and Wood

In Italy, coppice stands are a main forest resource, both environmentally and economically. In order to be managed according to ecologically and financially sound approaches, an in-depth knowledge of such silvicultural system is suggested. Under this perspective, this note provides an update and a synthesis about the most relevant growth-and-yield and management aspects of main coppice types in Italy, by analyzing available contributions from specialized literature. The overall need for rationalizing silvicultural management by properly joining production with landscape and environmental issues is highlighted.


Elements of design and guidelines for testing polycyclic plantations

Year of publication: 2017

Research centers: Forestry and Wood

The main criteria to design polycyclic plantations are described, in this innovative plantation type main trees with different rotation periods coexist in the same plantation. The main advantages of this type of plantation are highlighted both from the managerial and economic-financial point of view, pointing out also the ecological environmental improvements. Some standard plantin layout are reported both for polycyclic plantations with end  (PT) and for potentially permanent plantations (3P). 

Finally, guidelines for testing polycyclic plantations are defined.

Francesco Pelleri

  1. Guidelines

  2. Elements of design and guidelines

Updated models for environmentally friendly poplar cultivation

Year of publication: 2018

Research centers: Forestry and Wood

Updated models for environmentally friendly poplar cultivation are presented and discussed, with particular reference to those mainly oriented to the production of quality woody assortments for the plywood industry, obtainable from plantations in specialized cultivation, or from multispecies plantations that require use of poplar clones with medium-long cycle hardwoods (polycyclic plants) or from poplar rows alternated with agricultural crops (agroforestry). This document is intended to serve as a reference, support and stimulus for poplar growers, professional technicians, industrialists, public administration officials, researchers and policy makers, in the knowledge that the poplar supply chain in Italy can represent one of the most dynamic operational sector of the green economy.

Coppice silviculture: are laws and regulations in line with current conditions in Italy?

Year of publication: 2018

Research centers: Foreste e Legno

Despite a less intensive management in the recent decades, coppices still co-ver a large part of Italian woodlands. Currently, they are characterized by relatively large wood volumes, especially with respect of those stands classified as “aged”. The current European and national strategies to reduce the use of fossil fuels and the related increasing demand of renewable bio-energy sour-ces are giving a new boost to the coppice system, so that the need for an im-proved management of these stands is emerging. Under this perspective, this note highlights the opportunity for an overall revision of current forest laws and regulations at regional level in Italy, in order to embed recent scientific achievements and harmonize some aspects such as definitions, rotation, con-version to high stands, standards, cut size and administrative procedures.