Field and greenhouse studies were undertaken in 1960 to determine the effects of seeding depth on the germination and establishment of direct-seeded longleaf and slash pines in the South Carolina Sandhills. Based upon data on seedling survival, optimum seeding depths were determined. Under field conditions the recommended depth tolerance for longleaf pine was ¼ to ¾ inch, and for slash pine ½ to ¾ inch. In the greenhouse, under a controlled environment, the optimum seeding depth for longleaf pine was between 1/8 and ½ inch, and for slash pine between 1/8 and ¾ inch. Since the differences in optimum depths between the field and greenhouse trials can be attributed primarily to the added effects of seed displacement due to wind and water erosion, the above field depths are recommended for Sandhill sites. To improve seedling survival and to obtain adequate stocking, it is apparent that seed coverage is required when direct-seeding pine on cleared or furrowed sandy sites. Mechanical refinement of seeding machines to allow for correct seed placement is an important factor in achieving this objective. These investigations also showed that seed of both species germinated more rapidly at the recommended depths of sowing and not only began germination sooner, but maintained this advantage at the termination of a 50-day growth period.
Document Type: Journal Article
Associate Professor of Forestry, School of Forestry, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pa.
Publication date: December 1, 1963
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