This textbook offers a detailed overview of the current state of knowledge concerning the ecology and management of compositionally and structurally diverse forests. It provides answers to central questions such as:
- What are the scientific concepts used to assess the growth, dynamics and functioning of mixed-species forests, how generalizable are they, and what kind of experiments are necessary to develop them further?
- How do mixed-species stands compare with monocultures in relation to productivity, wood quality, and ecological stability in the face of stress and disturbances?
- How are the effects of species mixtures on ecosystem functioning influenced by the particular species composition, site conditions, and stand structure?
- How does any over- or underyielding at the forest-stand level emerge from the tree and organ level, and what are the main mechanisms behind mixing effects?
- How can our current scientific understanding of mixed-species forests be integrated into silvicultural concepts as well as practical forest management and planning?
- Do the ecological characteristics of mixed-species stands also translate into economic differences between mixtures and monocultures?
In addition, the book addresses experimental designs and analytical approaches to study mixed-species forests and provides extensive empirical information, general concepts, models, and management approaches for mixed-species forests. As such, it offers a valuable resource for students, scientists and educators, as well as professional forest planners, managers, and consultants.