The first step in the preparation of a management plan is to simulate silvicultural management alternatives for each stand (compartment). The simulation is based on silvicultural instructions, on one hand, and individual tree growth and survival models, on the other hand.
The user has the possibility to include only a part of the sub-areas (blocks) of the forest in the planning calculations. The planning horizon may be divided into 1 to 3 sub-periods each of which covers 2–20 years depending on what is convenient in the planning situation at hand. Once these simulation parameters have been set, MONTE automatically produces a set of alternative management schedules for every stand, based on instructions that may be adjusted by the user. In even-aged forestry, thinning treatments are activated by a certain stand density and regeneration cuts are triggered-off by certain stand age. Instructions for uneven-aged management specify the stand basal area at which a selective felling should be conducted, as well as the thinning intensities in different diameter classes. To be able to create alternative management schedules for the stands, MONTE uses multipliers that change the timing of treatments. The user may adjust these multipliers as well as the simulation instructions.