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Sulfometuron methyl: Its use in forestry and potential phytotoxicityAuthor(s): Nathan D. Robertson; Anthony S. Davis
Source: In: Riley, L. E.; Pinto, J. R.; Dumroese, R. K., tech. cords. National Proceedings: Forest and Conservation Nursery Associations-2009. Proc. RMRS-P-62. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 53-60.
Publication Series: Proceedings (P)
Station: Rocky Mountain Research Station
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DescriptionPlanting site preparation is a common practice used to enhance seedling establishment success. Site preparations include herbicide, fire, and mechanical methods. Studies designed to explore the use of herbicides as site preparation and release tools are common, and herbicides have shown their use in forestry to be logistically, economically, and ecologically advantageous. Herbicides that pose little threat to animal health or off-site contamination are desirable for forest management. Sulfometuron and related herbicides have been identified as effective vegetation suppressants with little collateral environmental impact. However, most research involving site preparation with sulfometuron has tested for efficacy and environmental safety alone, without addressing potential herbicide influence on growth of desirable species. Because the growth of seedlings is often a primary concern in forestry herbicide use, growth suppression is undesirable. Some research recognizing the potential for sulfometuron to damage tree seedlings has been conducted, but most emphasis lies with eastern US hardwoods and southeastern US softwoods that show species-specific tolerance levels. Little study has been conducted to explore the effects of sulfometuron on important species of the northwestern US, despite its use there. The few experiments conducted in the west have focused only on a few species. Widespread and important species such as western white pine (Pinus monticola), western larch (Larix occidentalis), and interior Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca) have received little or no study with sulfometuron, despite their value and current use in intensively-managed forests; ideally the information presented in this paper will serve as a basis for new research to fill this information gap. The deficit of knowledge concerning potential detrimental effects of sulfometuron on these species calls for further research to establish best-use practices for individual species and site factors.
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CitationRobertson, Nathan D.; Davis, Anthony S. 2010. Sulfometuron methyl: Its use in forestry and potential phytotoxicity. In: Riley, L. E.; Pinto, J. R.; Dumroese, R. K., tech. cords. National Proceedings: Forest and Conservation Nursery Associations-2009. Proc. RMRS-P-62. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. p. 53-60.
Keywordssulfometuron, phytotoxic, seedling, site preparation, nursery
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