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DIRECT SEEDING. Establishing A Forest With Seed. BENEFITS OF DIRECT SEEDING VS. TREE SEEDLINGS. WHY DIRECT SEED?. Larger Planting Window, Fall Season Utilize Local or In-State Seed Resource More Trees/Acre-Quicker Canopy-Form Undisturbed Root System/No Transplant Overwhelm The Critters

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direct seeding

DIRECT SEEDING

Establishing A Forest

With Seed

why direct seed
WHY DIRECT SEED?
  • Larger Planting Window, Fall Season
  • Utilize Local or In-State Seed Resource
  • More Trees/Acre-Quicker Canopy-Form
  • Undisturbed Root System/No Transplant
  • Overwhelm The Critters
  • More Natural Appearance
  • Shorter Maintenance Period
  • Potentially Less Expensive
why plant seedlings
WHY PLANT SEEDLINGS?
  • Seed germination is uncertain, seedlings are a known quantity
  • There are more potentially damaging agents for seed than seedlings
  • Seed crops and seed availability are uncertain
  • Seedlings may have a head start the first year, depending on size and quality
seed collection

SEED COLLECTION

Determine your needs

Scout potential seed trees

Use a Bag-a-Nut

Be efficient

Float, sort/inspect, store

determine your needs match species to site
Tree Planting Plan, an attachment to NRCS Conservation Plan, will prescribe the seed per acre and match species to site.DetermineYour Needs, Match Species to Site
scout potential seed trees
Scout Potential Seed Trees
  • Be sure of species ID
  • Locate on a large scale map
  • Red oak group visible in July, white by August
  • Obtain permission to collect
using a bag a nut
Using a Bag-a-Nut
  • Up to 1 bushel (about 50 pounds) per hour of medium-sized acorns
  • Can pay for itself in less than 8 hours
  • Works best in mowed grass situation, with some site prep
  • Match machine to seed size
  • For more info. see www.directseeding.org
be efficient gear up before you start
Rakes

Blower/vac

Bag-a-Nut

Containers

soaking pool

sorting table

onion bags

cold storage

Be efficient, gear up before you start:
be efficient
Be prepared: In central Illinois seed begins to drop late-August to mid-September

White oak group is usually first, then red, pin drops late

Concentrate on trees with a BIG seed drop

Collect after windy storms

Collect BEFORE leaves fall

After leaves fall use blower/vac to remove leaves

Be Efficient
slide13
Soaking Seed

Sorting Seed

purchasing seed
Purchasing Seed
  • Local seed is the best seed
  • Contact District Forester and/or SWCD
  • Check www.directseeding.org
  • Follow “Seed Care and Handling”
seed care and handling
“Float” collected seed, soak ALL seed

Immerse 4-8 hours

Inspect at least 10 seeds/bushel

If its your own seed inspect on the sorting table, before bagging

Cut or crack test, look for seed that is: filled, light-colored, bug-free

Bag in porous, woven (“onion”) sacks

Store in cool, well-ventilated location, protected from predators

If delayed more than 2 weeks, place in plastic bags and refrigerate @ 33-40 degrees

Seed Care and Handling
inspect all tree seed
Inspect All Tree Seed
  • Use a hand pruner for acorns, a hammer for walnuts & hickorys
  • Keep seed that is:
    • Filled
    • Bright, uniform color
    • undamaged
  • Discard seed that is
    • Shriveled, shrunken
    • Dark colored or mottled
    • Cracked, holed, or otherwise damaged
use high quality seed
Use High Quality Seed
  • Plant only undamaged, mature, viable seed
  • Cut or crack test at least 10 random seeds per bushel
  • If non-viable seed is found, increase seeding rate by the same percentage
planting time

PLANTING TIME

-ASAP, Fall is best

-white oaks-must fall plant, especially Quercus alba & chinkapin

-if properly stored, plant any time ground is not frozen or dry

-very risky between June and September

seeding rates
Row Seeding

MINIMUM of 3,000 hard mast seed/acre

At 10’ row spacing, about 16” or less between seeds

Planting depth about 2X seed diameter, 1-4” depending on species

If no light seeded spp. nearby, add 1,000 seed/acre

Seeding Rates
seeding rates22
Broadcast Seeding

MINIMUM of 4,800 hard mast seed/acre

Planting depth about 2X seed diameter, 1-4” depending on species

If no light seeded spp. nearby, add 1,000 seed/acre

Seeding Rates
site preparation row planting
Till and/or spray a minimum 2-foot radius circle or 4-foot wide band with trees or seed centered in the grass free area.

Grass species, esp. sod-forming, are death to trees.

Use snap trap survey to estimate potential rodent populations.

Site Preparation, Row Planting

Mow or till between rows to minimize rodent habitat

site preparation broadcast
Site Preparation, Broadcast
  • Crop ground
    • Disk Several Times
  • Pasture/Brome
    • Mow grass in August.
    • Spray 2 quarts of Roundup in September
    • Plow and Disk
weed control for direct seeding
WEED CONTROL FOR DIRECT SEEDING
  • Competition must be controlled for minimum of two years
  • Good control of grasses and weeds is critical
weed control for direct seeding30
WEED CONTROL FOR DIRECT SEEDING

1st Year

Pre-emergents

Pendulum (Prowl) - 2qts/ac.

Goal - 2 to 4 qts/ac. (expensive)

Post-emergents

Fusilade - grasses 6-10”; 1 pint/ac. plus a non-ionic surfactant

OR

Envoy - grasses < 12”; 1 pint/ac.

Transline or Stinger - broadleaves; 1/2 pint/ac.

See: IL Forest Herbicide Manual, IL Direct Seeding Handbook, & www.directseeding.org.

weed control for direct seeding31
WEED CONTROL FOR DIRECT SEEDING

2nd Year

Pre-emergents

Pendulum (2 to 3 qts/ac). + Princep (2 to 4 qts/ac.)

Post-emergents (weeds no more than 6-12” tall)

Fusilade - grasses (1 pint/ac.)

Transline or Stinger - broadleaves (1/2 pint/ac.)

Oust - grasses and broadleaves (1/2 to 3/4 oz/ac.)

See: IL Forest Herbicide Manual, IL Direct Seeding Handbook, & www.directseeding.org.

plantation maintenance
Maintain weed free area for 2-3 years

Replant if survival drops below 500 after 2 years, counting desirable natural regeneration.

Plantation Maintenance
slide33
A little late-season

broadleaf competition is OK...

Grass competition is

a prescription for failure!

slide41
7 year old broadcast

5 year old broadcast

keys to success with direct seeding
Use a professional

Control weeds

Match spp. to site

Inspect all seed, carefully store & handle (cool & moist)

Survey and manage rodent populations

Use lots of seed

Use lots of species

Plant @ proper depth

Keys to Success with Direct Seeding
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