The target seedling: Review of concepts, attributes, and implementation of a working program

T. Birchler, R. W. Rose, A. Royo, M. Pardos


The purpose of this paper is to examine in a logical way what constitutes a target seedling and how to implement a target seedling program. The target seedling concept provides a working model of the knowledge required for reforestation success, and the target seedling program is the system by which people carry out the concept. In order to accomplish this, several concepts are discussed first: the influence of nursery cultural practices on tree seedlings’ attributes, seedling phenology and processes involved in succesful seedling establishment and performance. Then, some of the possible material and performance attributes useful to define the target seedling are reviewed. Finally, the guidelines for the implementation of a ‘target seedling program’ are presented.


Target seedling; Field performance; Morphological and physiological attributes