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Growth and Morphology of Black Spruce, Jack Pine, and White Spruce Container Seedlings in Northern Ontario

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The development of morphological attributes of containerized seedlings during the growing season was studied in eight crops from three nurseries in Northern Ontario, including four black spruce crops, three jack pine crops, and one white spruce crop. The variability was proportionally largest in root and shoot dry mass, followed by height and diameter. During seedling growth, proportionally the variability of size did not seem to increase. In absolute scale, however, differences between individual seedlings increased more than differences between seedling trays, possibly due to competition between individuals. Height and shoot growth were greater in the beginning of the growing season, and diameter and root growth were greater toward the end. In comparison to standards, the balance between morphological attributes (height/diameter, shoot/root) was usually acceptable, and usually independent of seedling size. The easiest way of monitoring crop development is to take seedling samples at regular intervals and to construct a growth progression curve for seedling height, if diameter growth reaches acceptable level. Care should be taken that the height of seedlings does not increase too much at the expense of diameter and root development in the larger crops. To monitor this, height-diameter ratios and shoot-root ratios might be measured a couple of times during the growing season to take corrective action if necessary. North. J. Appl. For. 12(2):69-74.

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: University of Joensuu, Faculty of Forestry, P.O. Box 111, FIN-80101 Joensuu, Finland

Publication date: 1995-06-01

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  • Each regional journal of applied forestry focuses on research, practice, and techniques targeted to foresters and allied professionals in specific regions of the United States and Canada. The Northern Journal of Applied Forestry covers northeastern, midwestern, and boreal forests in the United States and Canada.
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