In an experimental afforestation (Stillberg near Davos) close to the subalpine tree line, we studied mortality and height development of planted Swiss stone pines, mountain pines and European larches, and their relationship to microsite parameters such as exposure, soil type and duration of snow cover in spring, as well as to meteorological parameters.

The most important cause of mortality among the planted trees was the pathogenic fungus Gremmeniella abietina,which particularly occurred on sites with prolonged snow cover in spring. This study revealed changes in the ranking order among the species three times within twenty years,both for survival and for tree height, which demonstrates the necessity of long-term studies.

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