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Article

Shearing Systems for Fraser Fir (Abies fraseri) Christmas Trees

1
Professor Emeritus, Department of Horticultural Science, North Carolina State University, Box 7609, Raleigh, NC 27695, USA
2
Smokey Holler Tree Farm, LLC, 3452 Meadowfork Road, Laurel Springs, NC 28644, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2018, 9(5), 246; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9050246
Received: 8 April 2018 / Revised: 2 May 2018 / Accepted: 3 May 2018 / Published: 4 May 2018
Plantation-grown Fraser fir (Abies fraseri (Pursh) Poir.) Christmas trees were subjected to nine shearing regimes over nine years in a plantation in western North Carolina (USA). Treatments differed in the year of onset as well as the length of the residual leader (25 to 46 cm). Long leaders (36 to 46 cm) yielded trees that were taller than trees sheared with short leaders (25 to 30 cm), but the gain in height was offset by a lower average U.S. Department of Agriculture grade. Late in the rotation, trees sheared with 36–46-cm leaders were 17–34% heavier than those with 25–30-cm leaders. Average wholesale price of trees sheared with long leaders was 57% greater than that of trees sheared with short leaders. Assuming good bud density on leaders and branches, and considering other factors as well, the optimum leader length for Fraser fir Christmas trees in western North Carolina appears to be 30 to 41 cm (12 to 16 inches). Depending on site quality and variation in bud density and vigor among individual trees, leader length can be reduced, if necessary, to increase crown density. View Full-Text
Keywords: Abies fraseri; Christmas tree; tree growth; USDA grade; leader length; rotation; tree weight; biomass; shearing systems; bud density; market value Abies fraseri; Christmas tree; tree growth; USDA grade; leader length; rotation; tree weight; biomass; shearing systems; bud density; market value
MDPI and ACS Style

Hinesley, E.; Deal, B.; Deal, E. Shearing Systems for Fraser Fir (Abies fraseri) Christmas Trees. Forests 2018, 9, 246. https://doi.org/10.3390/f9050246

AMA Style

Hinesley E, Deal B, Deal E. Shearing Systems for Fraser Fir (Abies fraseri) Christmas Trees. Forests. 2018; 9(5):246. https://doi.org/10.3390/f9050246

Chicago/Turabian Style

Hinesley, Eric, Buddy Deal, and Earl Deal. 2018. "Shearing Systems for Fraser Fir (Abies fraseri) Christmas Trees" Forests 9, no. 5: 246. https://doi.org/10.3390/f9050246

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