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College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science


American beech is facing pressure from a number of emergent health issues including beech bark disease, beech leaf disease, beech leaf mining weevil, and climate and habitat change. Interest has increased in the propagation of American beech in response to the demand for more disease-resistant American beech for use in restoration. This study describes the first steps towards publishing methods for transplanting beech in order to supplement commercially available beech seedlings in an area with multiple agencies depleting the existing stock of slow growing species. American beech seedlings were purchased from a nursery in northern Michigan and were excavated from natural stands in the Hiawatha National Forest. Survival rates for these cohorts were compared after a growing season and by the relative amounts of fine roots present on the trees. Generally, the wildling seedlings had a higher survivability than the purchased bare root seedlings. Future work is proposed that could clarify the conditions leading to the higher survival in these wildling seedlings, including the potential for handling the time or age of the seedlings to influence survival.

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© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https:// 4.0/). Publisher’s version of record:

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


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