Growth and stem profiles of invasive Triadica sebifera in the Mississippi coast of the United States.
Chinese tallow (Triadica sebifera) has become an aggressive invasive hardwood species in the southern United States. The aim of this study was to develop a series of growth models including dbh, total height, stem volume, and biomass against age and allometric relationship models as well as taper functions for tallow in the invaded forests of coastal Mississippi. Data were collected from a bottomland oak-gum-cypress (OGC) stand and a slash pine (SP) flatwood using a stem analysis method. Results of fitted growth models indicated that dbh, stem volume, and biomass of tallow of the same age were greater in the OGC forest than in the SP forest, but no height growth difference was found between these two forests. Stem profile functions suggested that stem taper decreased greatly in a linear manner at relative height of >10% in the OGC forest, whereas it decreased in a nonlinear manner with relative height in the SP forest. The models developed provide baseline information on the growth of tallow and are useful for managers to project its future growth stocking in the invaded areas and to estimate the native timber loss.