New Forests

, Volume 29, Issue 3, pp 313–320 | Cite as

Growth of graded sweetgum 3 years after root and shoot pruning



Nursery grown 1–0 bareroot sweetgum seedlings were lifted and graded into two diameter classes (12–16 and 4–8 mm) during the dormant season. Large and small grades were top and/or root pruned and then outplanted on two sites in the lower Coastal Plain of the southeastern United States. Seedling shoots were pruned to 50% of tree height, a 5 cm stump, or no pruning. Seedling roots were pruned to a 15 cm length or left unpruned. Site affected survival but not growth. Smaller, top pruned seedlings performed worse on one site, probably due to greater weed competition. Large seedlings increased survival and growth which increased 3 year average plot volumes by 89%. Top pruning stimulated height growth, but reduced diameter growth and decreased third year seedling volumes. Root pruning did not affect seedling growth. Diameter growth may better indicate treatment impact that height, which has been most commonly used in previous studies.


Root pruning Seedling quality Sweetgum Top pruning 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Forestry and Wildlife SciencesAuburn UniversityAuburn
  2. 2.Research AssistantVirginia Polytechnic UniversityBlacksburg

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