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Effect of Root-Plug Incorporated Controlled-Release Fertilizer on Two-Year Growth and Survival of Planted Ponderosa Pine Seedlings

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Three controlled-release fertilizers (fast release [FR], moderate release [MR], and slow release [SR]) were incorporated in the root plug at rates of 0.8, 1.6, or 3.2 g/seedling at the time of sowing as supplements to nursery supplied soluble fertilizer. Effects on seedling growth, survival, and foliar nutrient status of the “160/90” container ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) were evaluated after outplanting. At the end of the second growing season, fertilized seedlings had significantly greater diameter and height than unfertilized seedlings. The 3.2 g of MR or SR fertilizer treatments produced significantly higher mortality (55 and 36%, respectively) than the controls. The fast release fertilizer included at a rate of 0.8 g in each seedling's container was the preferred treatment since it produced good survival and seedling growth response. A 2-yr growth response of about 25% was similar to that observed in a nearby study using adjacent placement of controlled-release fertilizer after planting ponderosa pine seedlings. West. J. Appl. For. 17(4):216–219.
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Keywords: Fertilizer; Pinus ponderosa; environmental management; forest; forest management; forest resources; forestry; forestry research; forestry science; natural resource management; natural resources; seedling growth

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: 1: Department of Forest Resources, College of Natural Resources, 2: Statistical Programs, College of Agriculture, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID, 83844-1133,

Publication date: 2002-10-01

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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 Western Journal of Applied Forestry covers the western United States, including Alaska, and western Canada; WJAF will also consider manuscripts reporting research in northern Mexico that has potential application in the southwestern United States.
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