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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Tree shelters improve the survival and growth of planted Engelmann spruce seedlings in southwestern Colorado

Published source details

Jacobs D.F. & Steinbeck K. (2001) Tree shelters improve the survival and growth of planted Engelmann spruce seedlings in southwestern Colorado. Western Journal of Applied Forestry, 16, 114-120


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Use tree guards or shelters to protect planted trees Forest Conservation

A replicated, randomized, controlled study in 1996-1997 in temperate coniferous forest in Colorado, USA (Jacobs & Steinbeck 2001) found that tree shelters increased the survival rate of Engelmann spruce Picea engelmannii seedlings. The survival rate of Engelmann spruce was higher with the three light-coloured tree shelters (95-99%) than the controls (70%) and the lowest with the dark brown shelters (5%). Four replicates of each of five treatments were randomly assigned to 20 plots in each of three blocks (0.5 ha): four colours of recycled polyethylene plastic tree shelters (31 cm height and 9 cm diameter), ranging from nearly clear to brown, and a control (using materials from within the site, e.g. logs, stumps, shrubs, rocks, to protect seedlings). In August-September 1996, 25 seedlings were planted in each plot (total of 1,500 seedlings). Data were collected in 1997.