Health and Establishment of Highway Planting in FL

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Seth A. Blaira, Andrew K. Koesera, Gary W. Knoxb, Lara A. Romanc, Mack Thetfordd, Deborah R. Hilbert

Format: Research Study/Post-Test


ISA BCMA Science: 0 Practice: 0.5 Management: 0.5

Climber Specialist: 1

ISA Certified Arborist:  1

Utility Specialist: 1

Municipal Specialist: 1

Aerial Lift Specialist:   1

You are purchasing the post-test and CEU processing for this open source research study.


Urban tree planting initiatives can experience high levels of mortality during establishment years. Mortality tied to the stresses of transplanting can be partially negated or exacerbated depending on the species selected, nursery materials used, site conditions present, and management practices employed. Past research has quantified post-planting survival, health, and growth. However, varying climates, species, land use types, and management practices warrant additional region-specific research. The purpose of this study is to assess the success of plantings along Florida highways and identify species, site, and management factors related to tree and palm health and establishment. Results show high establishment survival (98.5%) across 21 planting projects ranging from 9 to 58 months after installation (n = 2711). For transplanted palms, the presence of on-site irrigation significantly improved establishment from 96.2% to 99.4%. No establishment differences were detected with regard to irrigation treatment for small-stature trees, shade trees, and conifers. Additionally, there were significant differences in tree health response among tree groups given species, management, and site factors.

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