Canadian Forest Service Publications

Frost tolerance of two-year-old Picea glauca seedlings grown under different irrigation regimes in a forest nursery. 2008. Carles, S; Lamhamedi, M.S.; Stowe, D.C.; Margolis, H.A.; Bernier, P.Y.; Veilleux, L.; Fecteau, B. Scand. J. For. Res. 23: 137-147.

Year: 2008

Issued by: Laurentian Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 29210

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

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This study examined the impact of increased irrigation efficiency on the hardening and frost tolerance of 2-year-old containerized white spruce seedlings in the context of groundwater protection, irrigation management and the maintenance of seedling quality in northern climates. The seedlings were grown under three different irrigation regimes (IR=30%, 40% and 55% v/v; cm3 H2O/cm3 substrate) and were hardened under conditions of natural photoperiod and temperature. After being subjected to artificial frost tests on four sampling dates during autumn, the seedlings were compared for bud development and frost tolerance. IR had no influence on frost tolerance as determined by measurements of physiological (electrolyte leakage, root water loss) and morphological (shoot damage, root initiation) variables. At the end of the second growing season, there was no significant difference between IRs in seedling height, root collar diameter, shoot dry mass and root dry mass. The results indicate that the amount of water applied to large-dimension 2-year-old white spruce seedlings during the growing season can be significantly decreased without prematurely impeding their growth or hindering their acquisition of frost tolerance.