Zinc fertilization in bareroot pine seedbeds

zinc fertilization


  • David B. South School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences, Auburn University, AL




Nutrition, Zinc, Foliar analysis, Soil testing, Land leveling, Mycorrhiza


Zinc deficiencies are rare in pine seedlings with less than five documented cases in bareroot nurseries. One temporary deficiency occurred after soil was land-leveled (i.e., topsoil removed) and another occurred on a peat soil after more than 2,200 kg of agricultural lime was applied before sowing. Farmers also observe zinc deficiencies on (1) over-limed areas and (2) where Zn-demanding crops are grown on areas where topsoil was removed during land leveling. Since ZnSO4 is a naturally occurring pesticide, sometimes height growth increases are due to pest control. In pathogen-rich soils, pine growth may be improved more by the fungicidal effect than by a growth benefit from added sulphur and zinc. As a result, a pseudo-deficient response is possible when growth of non-deficient seedlings increases after treatment with large amounts of ZnSO4 or ZnCl2. In some trials, claims of a Zn deficiency have been made without supporting evidence from foliar tests or from tests using pathogen-free soil. Although fertilization with Zn increased seedling growth at pine nurseries in New Zealand, India, Russia, and Wisconsin, only at the Sweetwater Nursery in New Zealand did foliar tests prove a Zn deficiency.


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Author Biography

  • David B. South, School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences, Auburn University, AL

    Emeritus Professor




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How to Cite

“Zinc Fertilization in Bareroot Pine Seedbeds: Zinc Fertilization”. REFORESTA, no. 16 (December 29, 2023): 66–93. Accessed May 20, 2024. https://journal.reforestationchallenges.org/index.php/REFOR/article/view/177.