Historical Emergence and Current Application of CCF

  • Jean-Philippe SchützEmail author
  • Timo Pukkala
  • Pablo J. Donoso
  • Klaus von Gadow
Part of the Managing Forest Ecosystems book series (MAFE, volume 23)


Although the majority of the world’s forest ecosystems are dominated by uneven-sized mixed species stands, forest management practice and theory have focused on the development of plantation monocultures to maximize the supply of timber at low cost. Societal expectations are changing, however, and uneven-aged multi-species ecosystems are often believed to be superior to monocultures in addressing a wide range of expectations. This chapter attempts to clarify terminology and define, albeit somewhat simplistically, continuous cover forestry (CCF) as opposed to rotation management (RFM). RFM is characterized by three distinct development phases: planting–thinning–clearfelling. At least two of these phases, and sometimes all three, occur simultaneously in CCF. The second section of this chapter describes the development of the European Plenter Forest system, which, being based on a sound theory of sustainable use and an extended period of practical applications, is often considered to be the “Archetype” of CCF. Prompted by a rising interest in continuous cover forestry, specific methods have been developed in many other regions. Accordingly, the third section briefly covers some approaches in China, Chile, Mexico, the United States and South Africa. The forth section introduces adaptive approaches to CCF. The ideal J-shaped target structure is an artificial construct which is easy to implement and thus useful for management. The problem is to define it. This problem is aggravated when foresters wish to (a) mimic natural structures which do not resemble inverse J-shaped diameter distributions and (b) when there is a need to respond to changing economic and environmental conditions.


Forest Owner Selective Harvesting Guide Curve Forest Management System Land Expectation Value 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jean-Philippe Schütz
    • 1
    Email author
  • Timo Pukkala
    • 2
  • Pablo J. Donoso
    • 3
  • Klaus von Gadow
    • 4
  1. 1.Eidgenössische Technische HochschuleZürichSwitzerland
  2. 2.School of Forest SciencesUniversity of Eastern FinlandJoensuuFinland
  3. 3.Faculty of Forest Sciences and Natural ResourcesUniversidad Austral de ChileValdiviaChile
  4. 4.Burckhardt InstituteGeorg-August University GöttingenGöttingenGermany

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