Terms - Silvicultural Terms in Canada
A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z


cabling [dragage au câble (n.m.)]
see chaining


cache [cache (n.f.)]
A place for storing seedlings close to the planting site.


canopy [couvert forestier (n.m.)]
The more or less continuous cover of branches and foliage formed collectively by the crowns of adjacent trees. (1)


canopy class [classe de couvert (none)]
syn. canopy cover class, crown class

Any class into which crops or stands may be divided on the basis of the degree of closure. (3)


canopy closure [fermeture du couvert (n.f.)]
1. The progressive reduction of space between crowns as they spread laterally, increasing canopy density. (1)

2. The point in time when crowns in a young stand begin to touch and interact.


canopy density [densité du couvert (n.f.)]
The amount of foliar cover, combining the extent of canopy closure and crown density. (1)


canopy opening [ouverture du couvert (n.f.)]
see opening up


careful logging around regeneration [coupe avec protection de la régénération (n.f.)]
Harvesting operation based on shelterwood cutting principles, where advanced regeneration is protected during harvesting.


carrier [support (n.m.)]
Any material, e.g. sawdust, that is thoroughly mixed with seed, fertilizer, herbicide, etc., to protect it in transit.


catch crop [culture dérobée (n.f.)]
A short-term, generally agricultural crop introduced into and at the start of a longer-rotation forest crop, mainly to provide early financial returns. (3)


chaining [dragage (n.m.)]
syn. chain clearing, cabling in British Columbia.

A method of reducing or clearing undesirable scrub by dragging through it a heavy chain (generally further weighted by objects such as concrete cylinders or large steel balls) between two appropriately spaced tractors. (3)


check [check (n.f.)]
Stagnation of tree or stand growth. (5)


chemical pruning [élagage chimique (n.m.)]
The application of chemicals, e.g. plant-growth regulators, to the living tree so as to kill, suppress, or inhibit lateral shoots. (3)


chevron cuts [coupes par chevrons (n.f.)]
A modification of strip cutting where the strip is angled part way along its length. (28)


chopping [déchiquetage-épandage (n.m.)]
Destruction of plants of sapling size or smaller and their incorporation into the soil with heavy disk plough or rolling brush choppers. (21)


cleaning [dégagement (n.m.)]
syn. brushing

A release treatment made in a stand not past the sapling stage to free the favored trees from less desirable species of the same age that overtop them or are likely to do so. (1)


clearcut [bois sans défaut (n.f.)]
n: An area of forest land from which all merchantable trees have recently been harvested. (5)
syn. clearcutting

v: To harvest all merchantable trees from an area of forest land. (5)


clearcutting method [zone de coupe à  blanc (n.m.)]
A method of regenerating an even-aged forest stand in which new seedlings become established in fully exposed microenvironments after removal of most or all of the existing trees. Regeneration can originate naturally or artificially. Clearcutting may be done in blocks, strips, or patches. (1)


clear-felled area [coupe à  blanc (n.f.)]
see clearcut


clearfelling [mode de régénération par coupe à  blanc (n.f.)]
see clearcut


clearfelling method [coupe rase, à blanc (n.m.)]
see clearcutting method


clearing [mode de régénération par coupe à  blanc (n.f.)]
1. A considerable open space in a forest, which can be natural or artificial. (3)

2. Removal of standing, usually scrubby, vegetation to prepare a site for reforestation.


clear wood [clairière (n.m.)]
Knot-free wood formed subsequent to pruning.


clonal test [test clonal (n.m.)]
Evaluation of genotypes by comparing clones in a plantation. (25)


closed canopy [couvert fermé (n.m.)]
see canopy closure


clone [cépée (n.m.)]
All plants reproduced asexually from a common ancestor and having identical genotypes. Named clones are given non-Latin names preceded by the abbreviation "cl". (11)


coarse woody debris [débris ligneux grossier (n.m.)]
The standing and downed dead wood in a forest.


clump [classe de cime codominante (n.f.), bouquet (n.m.)]
The aggregate of stems issuing from the same root, rhizome system, or stool. An isolated, generally dense, group of trees. (3)


commercial thinning [éclaircie commerciale (n.f.)]
see thinning: commercial


codominant crown class [reboisement de compensation (n.f.)]
see crown class: codominant


competition control [lutte contre la concurrence végétale (n.f.)]
A treatment designed to reduce the competitive effect of undesirable vegetation threatening the success of the regeneration of desirable tree species.

cf. brushing, cleaning


compensatory planting [lutte contre la concurrence végétale (n.m.)]
Creating plantations in one area in order to replace, in part or whole, a loss of growing stock elsewhere. (3)


composition [composition (n.f.)]
The proportion of each tree species in a stand expressed as a percentage of the total number, basal area, or volume of all tree species in the stand. (1)


compound fertilizer [fertilisant multi-action (n.m.)]
A mixture of chemical nutrients added to the soil, having a broad array of actions.


cone collection [récolte de cônes (n.f.)]
Harvesting of cones after seed maturation but before their dispersal. (10)


cone rake [cueilleur de cônes (n.m.)]
A device for collecting cones from a standing tree; it is lowered from a helicopter, over the crown of a tree. Cones or cone-bearing branches are removed and retrieved by the device.


cone year [bonne année (de production de cônes) (n.f.)]
see seed year


contained root [racine contenue (n.f.)]
A root that does not elongate beyond the confines of the original rooting volume within a container, even when outplanted with the container removed. (23)


container [récipient (n.m.)]
Portable receptacle (pot, bag, or linked spaces) to hold rooting medium for growing planting stock.


container-grown [pépinière (de plants) en récipients (n.m.)]
syn. containerized

see seedling: container


containerized seedling [plantation (de plants) en récipients (n.m.)]
see seedling: container


container nursery [semis en récipient (n.f.)]
A nursery where the stock is raised individually in containers. (3)


container planting [récipient, semis en (n.f.)]
Setting out of young trees (generally individually) from, or together with, receptacles containing the soil, etc., in which they have developed, either from seed or less commonly as transplants. (3)


container seedling [semis en récipient (n.m.)]
see seedling: container


contour furrow [plantation en bandes de niveau (n.f.)]
Trench made along a contour (i.e., horizontal) line, for the purpose of checking run-off and soil loss, and conserving moisture, in a hillside plantation. (3)


contour planting [plantation en bandes de niveau (n.f.)]
Setting out of young trees along a contour line.


controlled burning [brûlage dirigé (n.m.)]
see prescribed burning


conversion [conversion (none)]
A change from one silvicultural system to another, also called conversion cut, or from one stand of trees or ecosystem to another, termed species conversion, the silvicultural procedures involved constituting a conversion system. Note: the change may be spread over most or all of the new rotation adopted; its duration is termed the conversion period. In Newfoundland, the term stand conversion is used.


conversion period [durée de la conversion (n.f.)]
see conversion


coppice [taillis (n.m.)]
Natural regeneration originating from stump sprouts, stool shoots, or root suckers. (1)


coppice-of-two-rotations method [régime du taillis (n.m.)]
A coppice method in which some of the coppice shoots are reserved for the whole of the next rotation, the rest being cut. (3)


coppice method [taillis fureté (n.m.)]
A method of regenerating a forest stand in which the cut trees produce sprouts, suckers, or shoots. (1)


coppice selection method [rejet de taillis (n.m.)]
A coppice method in which only selected shoots of merchantable size are cut at each felling, giving uneven-aged stands. (3)


coppice shoot [taillis (n.m.)]
Any shoot arising from an adventitious or dormant bud near the base of a woody plant that has been cut back. (3)


coppice stand (forest) [régime du taillis (n.m.)]
see coppice


coppice system [taillis sous réserves (n.m.)]
see coppice method


coppice with reserves [taillis-sous-futaie (n.m.)]
see coppice-with-standards method


coppice with standards [bois de taillis (n.m.)]
see coppice-with-standards method


coppice-with-standards method [taillis composés (n.m.)]
A method of regenerating a forest stand by coppicing whereby selected trees grown from seed are left to grow to larger size than the coppice beneath them, in order to provide seeds for natural regeneration of standards in subsequent rotations.


coppice wood [régime du taillis-sous-futaie (n.m.)]
see coppice


coppicing [coupe de rajeunissement (n.f.), recépage (n.m.)]
Cutting trees close to ground level with a view to their producing coppice shoots. (3)


copse [bosquet de taillis (n.m.)]
A small woodlot or forest regularly cut over for regrowth. (3)


corridor planting [plantation en ligne (n.f.)]
Setting trees in parallel rows, generally at regular intervals between and in lines, on land either wholly or partially cleared. The form of line planting sometimes known as corridor planting involves setting a line of trees in narrow lanes ("corridors") that cut through undergrowth at more or less regular intervals (sometimes at their final crop spacing); generally a form of improvement planting or enrichment. (3)


corridor thinning [éclaircie en lignes (n.f.)]
see thinning: row


cover crop [engrais vert (n.m.)]
Syn. green manure crop

A suitable herbaceous crop, particularly Fabaceae but also Cruciferae and Gramineae, grown to reduce erosion, increase soil fertility, reduce invasion of more competitive vegetation, provide wildlife habitat, or protect site; it can be dug or ploughed in while succulent, with or without supplementary fertilizers.


cover density [densité du couvert (n.f.)]
see canopy density


cover type [type forestier, de couvert (n.m.)]
see forest type


crop [peuplement forestier (n.m.), récolte (n.f.)]
The harvestable vegetation growing on a forest area, more particularly the major woody growth forming the forest crop. (3)


crop planning [plan parcellaire de régénération (n.m.)]
The process of custom designing the density of regeneration and the timing and intensity of stand-tending treatments to achieve site- and species-specific stand-management objectives as well as to attain forest-level management objectives.


crop tree [arbre du peuplement final (n.m.)]
Any tree selected to become or forming a component of the final crop. (1)


crop-tree thinning [éclaircie par le haut (n.f.)]
see thinning: crown


crown [cime (n.f.)]
The part of a tree bearing branches and foliage.


crown class [classe de cime (n.f.)]
Trees in a forest with crowns of similar development and occupying a similar position in the canopy; the term applies to groups of trees. (6)

  • codominant [codominant (n.m.)]: Trees with crowns forming the general level of the main canopy in even-aged groups of trees, receiving full light from above and comparatively little from the sides. (1)
  • dominant [dominant (n.m.)]: Trees with crowns extending above the general level of the main canopy of even-aged groups of trees and receiving full light from above and partial light from the sides. (1)
  • intermediate [intermédiaire (n.m.)]: Trees with crowns extending into the lower portion of the main canopy of even-aged groups of trees, but shorter in height than the codominants; receiving little direct light from above and none from the sides; usually with small crowns that are crowded on the sides. (1)
  • open grown [en croissance libre (n.f.)]: Trees with crowns receiving full light from all sides due to the openness of the canopy. (5)
  • predominant [prédominant (n.m.)] Trees whose crowns have grown above the general level of the upper canopy. (3)
  • suppressed [dominé (n.m.)]: Trees with crowns entirely below the general level of the canopy of even-aged groups of trees, receiving no direct light either from above or from the sides. (1)


crown closure [fermeture du couvert (n.f.)]
The available crown space between trees; 100% crown closure is the time at which all available crown space is fully occupied.


crown closure class [classe de fermeture du couvert (n.f.)]
Any interval into which the range of proportions of ground area covered by the vertically projected tree crown areas of a stand is divided for classification and use.


crown cover [couvert (n.m.)]
The ground area covered by the crowns of trees or woody vegetation as delimited by the vertical projection of crown perimeters and commonly expressed as a percentage of total ground area. (1)


crown density [densité du couvert d'une cime (n.f.)]
The amount, compactness, or depth of foliage of a tree crown. (1)


crown pruning [taille en cime (n.f.)]
1. Natural: Removal or decadence of lateral live crown by wind, abrasion, reduced light, etc.

2. Cultural: Mechanical removal of branch ends to shape crowns for aesthetic appeal, e.g., for Christmas trees, bonsai, etc. In seed orchards, promoting cone or fruit production nearer the ground to facilitate collection or other operations.


crown thinning [éclaircie par le haut (n.f.)]
see thinning: crown


crushing [écrasage (n.m.)]
The compaction of slash and brush by machinery. In Manitoba, the chopping of slash and provision of microsites are considered important features of this treatment.


cull [rebut (n.m.)]
Trees or logs or portions thereof that are of merchantable size but are rendered unmerchantable by defects. (5) In nursery practice, a seedling that does not match the grade or specifications.


cultural operations [soins culturaux (n.m.)]
A general term for operations, as a rule not directly remunerative, undertaken to assist or complete existing tree regeneration, to promote the development of a forest crop, and to minimize damage caused by felling and extraction. (3)


cultural practices [pratiques culturales (n.f.)]
see cultural operations


cut-bark application [traitement par entaillage de l'écorce (n.m.)]
see basal bark treatment


cutover [traitement des souches (n.f.)]
An area of forest land from which some or all timber has recently been cut. (5)


cut-stump treatment [aire de coupe (n.m.)]
see stump treatment


cutting [bouture (n.f.), abattage (n.m.)]
1. [bouture (n.f.)] A short length cut from a young, living stem, branch, or root, for propagating a whole new plant, in soil or other media. (3)

2. [abattage (n.m.)] The act of cutting down a standing tree.
syn. felling, falling


cutting cycle [rotation (n.f.)]
The planned interval between partial harvests in an uneven-aged stand. (1)


cutting regime [régime d'exploitation (n.m.)]
System of cutting treatments applied to a stand at a defined period.


        Terms in the glossary are arranged alphabetically. In some instances, terms within a family (for example, thinning) are grouped together to make it easier for the reader to compare them. In such cases, each member of a family (for example, precommercial thinning) is also listed alphabetically, but the reader is referred to the family name.

        Each term appears in boldface letters and is followed by its equivalent term in French in brackets. Terms used as both nouns and verbs are identified as such by n and v, respectively. The generic of the French equivalent term is offered in this edition, and refers to the dominant noun when the equivalent is not a single word.

        The number in parentheses following a term refers to the source of the definition. These sources are listed below. In many cases, definitions taken from such sources have been paraphrased and/or edited to agree with house style. This publication is the source of those definitions not followed by numbers in parentheses.

1. Adams, D.L., et al. 1989. Recommended changes in silviculture terminology. Unpublished. Silviculture Instructors Subgroup, Silviculture Working Group (D2), Society of American Foresters. Washington, DC.

2. Crcha, J.; Martel, J.; Savard, J. 1977. Normes de traitements sylvicoles. Ministère de l’Énergie et des Ressources, Québec.

3. Ford-Robertson, F.C. 1971. Terminology of forest science, technology practice and products. Society of American Foresters, Washington, DC.

4. Forestry Statistics and Systems Branch, Canadian Forestry Service. 1984. Reporting and summarizing forestry change data—Manitoba pilot study. Petawawa National Forestry Institute, Chalk River, Ont. Inf. Rep. PI-X-36.

5. Haddon, B.D., editor. 1988. Forest inventory terms in Canada. 3rd ed. Canadian Forest Inventory Committee, Forestry Canada.

6. Merrill, D.F.; Alexander, M.E., editors. 1987. Glossary of forest fire management terms. 4th ed. National Research Council of Canada, Canadian Committee on Forest Fire Management, Ottawa. Publication NRCC No. 26516.

7. New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources. No date. Glossary of terms.

8. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 1984. Glossary of terms. Unpublished.

9. Province of Saskatchewan. 1989. Silviculture definitions. Unpublished.

10. Smith, D.M. 1986. The practice of silviculture. 8th ed. John Wiley & Sons, New York.

11. Wright, J.W. 1976. Introduction to forest genetics. Academic Press, New York.

12. Zobel, B.; Talbert, J. 1984. Applied forest tree improvement. John Wiley & Sons, New York.

Sources Added to Second Edition

13. Agriculture Handbook No. 553. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Washington, DC.

14. Holmes, S. 1979. S. Henderson’s dictionary of biological terms. 9th ed. Longman Group Ltd., London.

15. Zumer-Linder, M. 1979. Environmental word-list. Ecological Studies 3. Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences, International Rural Development Centre, Uppsala, Sweden.

16. Forestry Commission Leaflet No. 77. Oxford, UK.

17. Dawkins, H.C. 1958. The management of natural tropical high forest with special reference to Uganda. p. 127–129 in Inst. Paper No. 34, Int. For. Inst., Oxford, UK.

18. Moore, R.; Mills, T. 1977. An environmental guide to Western surface mining. Part two: Impacts, mitigation and monitoring, p. VI.1-VI.9. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.

19. 1974. A glossary of terms used in range management. 2nd ed. Society for Range Management, Denver, CO.

20. Collocott, T.C. (Ed.). 1971. Dictionary of science and technology. W. & R. Chambers Ltd., Edinburgh.

21. Forest Engineering Research Institute of Canada. 1993. Personal communications.

22. Winters, R.K. (Ed.). 1977. Terminology of forest science, technology, practice and products. English-language version. Addendum 1. Soc. Am. For., Washington, DC.

23. Sutton, R.F.; Tinus, R.W. 1983. Root and root system terminology. Forest Science Monograph No. 24. For. Sci. 29 (Suppl.).

24. Franzese, M.L.; Thompson, T.J.; McNutt, J. 1978. Comp. glossary of forestry related terms. Potlach Corporation, Lewiston.

25. Snyder, E.B. 1972. Glossary for forest tree improvement workers. Southern For. Exp. Stn., For. Serv., US Dep. Agr. 22  p.

26. Steppler, H.A.; Nair, P.K.R. 1987. Agroforestry: A decade of development. ICRAF, Nairobi, Kenya. 276 p.

27. Sutton, R.F. 1985. Vegetation management in Canadian forestry. Govt. Can., Can. For. Serv. Sault-Ste-Marie, Ont. Inf  Rep. O-X-369. 34 p. + Append.

28. Ontario Ministry of Natural Ressources. 1987. Timber management guidelines for the protection of tourism values.

29. Thompson, A.J.; Fleming, R. 1991. Legislative and policy limits to successful integrated pest management in Canada’s forest. For. Chron. 67(5):493-499.