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Proceedings of Past Forest Nursery Association Meetings:

Target Seedling Concepts: Height and Diameter.
Mexal, J.G.; Landis T. D.
1990: Roseburg, OR
The target seedling concept involves morphological and
physiological seedling attributes which affect outplanting
performance. Both morphological and physiological
attributes are directly influenced by nursery cultural prac-
tices. Among the cultural practices which influence target
seedling attributes are transplanting, growing density, and
both root and shoot pruning.
Morphological features, specifically height and stem
diameter, currently provide the best estimate of seedling
performance after outplanting. Diameter is the best pre-
dictor of survival, while height seems to predict height
growth. Parameters such as root mass or number of later-
als are also useful in assessing potential performance, but
their utility diminishes as stem diameter increases above 5
mm.
Seedling morphology does not always predict perfor-
mance because the morphology does not indicate vitality
or vigor of the seedling, in the future, nursery cultural
practices will target specific morphological attributes as
well as acceptable ranges of other important variables.
One such approach is discussed.
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