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Do chestnut, northern red, and white oak germinant seedlings respond similarly to light treatments? Growth and biomassAuthor(s): Joanne Rebbeck; Kurt Gottschalk; Amy Scherzer
Source: Candian Journal of Forest Research. 41: 2219-2230.
Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
Station: Northern Research Station
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DescriptionNorthern red oak (Quercus rubra L.) seedling growth has been extensively studied. White oak (Quercus alba L.) and chestnut oak (Quercus prinus L.), however, are far less investigated despite their importance among upland oak species in eastern North American forests. We characterized white and chestnut oak seedling response to light and available soil nutrients while using northern red oak as a benchmark. Germinants were grown within one of three shade treatments (25%, 18%, and 6% of full sun) in one of two native forest soil mixes over two growing seasons. Leaf area, shoot mass, and root mass of all three species showed positive growth responses to increasing light. Growth and biomass were higher for all species grown in the more nutrient-rich forest soil, but chestnut oak displayed the greatest positive responses to the higher nutrient levels. White oak seedlings were the slowest growers and demonstrated the most root-centered growth, with root to shoot ratios almost twice that of either chestnut or northern red oak seedlings. The oak species evaluated here responded differently to changes in resource availability. Our study demonstrates the differential response of upland oaks to low light and nutrients. These differences need consideration when developing oak management prescriptions for specific oaks.
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CitationRebbeck, Joanne; Gottschalk, Kurt; Scherzer, Amy. 2011. Do chestnut, northern red, and white oak germinant seedlings respond similarly to light treatments Growth and biomass. Candian Journal of Forest Research. 41: 2219-2230.
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