Field performance of Nuttall Oak on former agricultural fields: Initial effects of nursery source and competition control
Nuttall oak (Quercus nuttallii Palm.) seedlings raised at state nurseries in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Arkansas were morphologically different in height, root collar diameter, fresh mass, number of first-order lateral roots, root volume, and height-to-root collar diameter ratio. When outplanted on afforestation sites in the Lower Mississippi Alluvial Valley, nursery source did not significantly affect seedling survival or height and diameter growth 2 years after outplanting. Competing herbaceous vegetation reduced Nuttall oak seedling survival by 8%, height growth by 69%, and root collar diameter growth by 61 % 2 years after outplanting. Nursery source did influence the ability of Nuttall oak seedlings to overcome transplant stress. Greatest durations of planting check were observed on seedlings raised at Nursery B and C, particularly those competing with herbaceous vegetation.