Growing tropical tree planting stock in root trainers: Cell volume, seedling density and growing media

Marilyn M. Belarmino and Jocelyn R. Gonzales


The influence of root trainer cell volume and seedling density, and composition of growing media was examined in relation to morphological, biomass and seedling quality parameters of four-month old planting stock of three tropical broadleaved tree species viz., Acacia catechu, Azadiractha indica and Pongamia pinnata. The study revealed that a cell volume of 90 cm3 was not sufficient for proper seedling growth of A. catechu and A. indica. However, clear-cut superiority of 300 cm3 cell volume was evident only in the case of A. indica. It appeared that root trainer pots of 150 cm3 cell volume were suitable for growth of planting stock of A. catechu and P. pinnata and 300 cm3 cell volume for A. indica. Significant differences in the growth of planting stocks were observed among growing media treatments. Overall the tree species exhibited fast growth and high biomass as well as favorable seedling quality in growing media containing 80% compost with either sand (A. catechu and A. indica) or soil (P. pinnata) than the other treatments having 50%, 60% or 100% compost.

Keywords: biomass, height and root collar diameter, hiko pots, seedling quality

Annals of Tropical Research 30(2):44-55(2008)
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