The effectiveness of foliar analysis as an aid to the prescribing of fertilizer treatments for balsam fir Christmas trees

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University of New Brunswick


Foliar analysis as a diagnostic tool for balsam fir (Abies balsamea CL.) Mill.) Christmas tree management has been gaining importance in recent years. Research in the past has established fertilization recommendations based on foliar analysis. The effectiveness of the fertilization recommendation program offered by the New Brunswick Forest Extension Service to New Brunswick Christmas tree growers is evaluated. The evaluation is measured in terms of post foliar nutrient content and the growers' visual measurement of the response of the treated trees. Based on the observed data, 78% of the nutrient levels were, as a result of the fertilization, either maintained or improved relative to the standard ranges. The foliar standard range is 1.67-2.00% for nitrogen, 9.00-13.0 for phosphorus/nitrogen, 30.0-65.0 for potassium/nitrogen and 4.00-8.00 for magnesium/nitrogen. Recorded response for the data show that 84% of the treatments recorded a favourable visible response by the growers.