The objective of this study was to characterize the forest canopy in terms of species composition, tree size classes and spatial distribution of leaf area of a mature temperate rainforest to provide a basis for scaling up shoot-level processes of energy and mass exchange using a one-dimensional canopy model. Stem number per unit area was high (1660 stems ha(-1)) but species diversity was low (n = 10). Two species (Dacrydium cuppressinum and Weinmannia racemosa) equally accounted for 70% of the stem numbers, with the remaining 30% distributed among the other eight tree species. However, D. cuppressinum alone accounted for 720), of basal area and 75% of crown volume. Across the site L-e ("effective" leaf area index, uncorrected for foliage clumping and woody surface interceptance) varied between 2.2 and 5.6, with a mean value of 3.5. Half total woody surface area per unit ground area (W) was 1.1. The mean foliage clumping index within shoot elements (y(E)) was 1.2, while that between shoot elements (Omega(E)) was 0.87, giving an overall foliage clumping factor (Omega = Omega(E)/y(E)) of 0.73. After corrections for foliage clumping and woody surface interceptance, half total leaf area per unit ground area (L-hc = L-e/Omega - W) was 3.7. For individual shoots, yE increased from 1.0 to 1.5 with height in the canopy, possibly reflecting shoot structural adaptation to local irradiance.
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