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Planting depth's effect on container-grown trees
Date:11/17/2011

. Littleleaf linden remediation slowed growth for the first season after transplanting to a simulated landscape for 10-cm-deep trees and for the first two seasons for 20-cm-deep trees.

Evaluation of pin oak root systems three years after transplanting revealed vigorous growth of non-deflected adventitious roots that had formed on the trunks of deep trees; these roots appeared to be developing into main structural roots. No adventitious roots were present on littleleaf linden. Instead, deflected roots grew and produced deformed root systems on the linden trees.

"Remediating these species so as to expose root flares and to remove circling roots at transplanting may be more critical to ensure future health and stability of the tree. Thus, the resulting slower post-transplant growth is probably a justifiable expense", Harris said. "Our observations of littleleaf linden root system conditions three years after transplanting from containers suggest that root ball alteration at planting -- such as shaving or slicing outside edges or the use of special root pruning containersshould also be considered."

Harris and Day said their research suggests that nursery practices that minimize deep planting of liners in containers should be used as a general practice, regardless of tree species.


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Contact: Michael W. Neff
mwneff@ashs.org
703-836-4606
American Society for Horticultural Science
Source:Eurekalert  

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