FORHET: Heterogeneous forests

Understanding and modelling forest renewal and growth


Two major societal challenges concern forests today: on the one hand, an energy challenge linked to the increasing scarcity of fossil fuels and climate change, and on the other, the need to better preserve the environment. Thus, one of the objectives of the Grenelle de l'Environnement is to "produce more wood while better preserving biodiversity".
Mixed forest stands can provide part of the solution to this dual requirement. Indeed, the mixture of species has been shown to be favourable to productivity in many forest situations, and intrinsically constitutes an environment with a good capacity to host biodiversity compared to pure stands.
The Heterogeneous Forests team studies these complex systems in order to better understand their functioning and to better characterize their productivity. This work also provides forest managers with decision-making tools for the management of lowland forests (silviculture methods, thinning, regeneration and undergrowth, etc.).

Depuis 2013 l’équipe s’est investie dans l’installation d’un réseau de placettes expérimentales en forêt domaniale d'Orléans avec le soutien financier de la région Centre et en partenariat avec l’Office National des Forêts : dispositif nommé OPTMix (Oak Pine Tree Mixture). Ce dispositif a été établi pour évaluer les avantages et les inconvénients des stratégies sylvicoles envisagées dans le cadre du changement climatique concernant la densité et la composition du peuplement. Une originalité du dispositif est de pouvoir étudier l’action combinée de ces stratégies associée à la présence ou non d'ongulés sauvages.
Pour en savoir plus sur le dispositif OPTMix


The team's work focuses on the various interactions in mixed stands. These interactions can be between individuals of the same species or of different species, in the tree stratum, the undergrowth, or between the different strata of the ecosystem. We mainly address two aspects: on the one hand, the modelling of tree growth and dynamics, and on the other hand, the sharing of resources between individuals (light, water, nutrients).

Team composition (permanent staff)

Researchers and engineersIsabelle Bilger
Olivier Chaintreuil
Yann Dumas
Christian Ginisty
Nathalie Korboulewsky
Lisa Laurent
Thomas Pérot
Technicians/Assistants-engineeCamille Couteau
Aviva Kara
Sandrine Perret
PhD studentClaire Populus


In this folder

Main projects related to the growth of mixed stands, the dynamics of forest regeneration under cover and the growth and modelling of regular stands
Two themes in which the team is involved
Theses prepared in the Forhet team since 2010

Modification date : 24 January 2024 | Publication date : 14 June 2021 | Redactor : SL