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Pine Needles for Seedbed Covering

The benefits to be obtained from the use of pine needles for seedbed cover were particularly noticeable at the Clearfield State Forest Tree Nursery where severe and frequent rainstorms occurred during the spring and summer of 1956. The value of the protection offered to seedbeds and seedlings by the mulch of pine needles was studied in conjunction with operations in the Pennsylvania State Forest Tree Nurseries. Counts and measurements were taken on four adjoining beds of red pine having two different bed coverings. Preparation of beds, seeding, and covering were done on the same day. Two beds were covered to a depth of 1/4 inch with a mixture of half sand and half sawdust, over which was placed a layer of burlap. The other two beds were covered with approximately 1/2 inch of red pine needles followed by 1/2 inch of half sand and half sawdust. Lath shades were used on the four beds to hold down the burlap and pine needle cover.

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Author(s): Thomas S. DeLong, Charles R. Nolder

Publication: Tree Planters' Notes - Issue 29 (1957)