Abstract: Originally, practically the whole of New York State was covered by forests. Records show that all but two percent of the land area was stocked by superior forest growth (Armstrong and Bjorkbom 1956). But as the white man moved into the state, large areas of forests were destroyed by settlers. Beginning at the end of the nineteenth century, some of the land that had been used for agriculture was left idle. Most of the areas that were abandoned were sub-marginal, approximately five million acres lying idle in 1930 (Forestry Committee of the New York State Planning Board, undated).
In 1932, large scale reforestation projects were begun on this land, some of it having been bought by the state under the Hewitt Constitutional Amendment of 1931. Up to 1955 more than 500,000 acres had been planted, with coniferous species (Armstrong and Bjorkbom 1956).
On the floor of many of these conifer plantations, regeneration of hardwood species, and in some, the conifers themselves, has begun to appear. It is this reproduction that is the study material of this thesis. In five selected plantations, factors influencing the establishment and rate of growth of the regeneration were studied. These factors were the distance from a possible seed source, the species of conifer in the overstory, and the density of the over-story. Different factors were studied in the various plantations, because of their different suitability in this respect.