A REPORT ON SURVIVAL OF ROADSIDE PLANTINGS

A STUDY WAS MADE OF PLANT LOSSES ON HIGHWAY LANDSCAPE PROJECTS IN METROPOLITAN NEW YORK AND NASSAU AND SUFFOLK COUNTIES ON LONG ISLAND TO DETERMINE THE RELATION BETWEEN SUCH LOSSES AND SIZE AND SPECIES OF PLANTS. THE PROJECTS REPORTED ARE NOT WITHIN THE AREA SUBJECT TO AIR POLLUTION AFFECTING PLANT GROWTH. NO GEOGRAPHIC LIMITATIONS OF SOURCE OF SUPPLY OF PLANTS WERE SPECIFIED. PLANTING WAS PERMITTED FROM OCTOBER 15, TO MAY 1 WITH THE LIMITATION THAT BACKFILL AND ROOTS OF BARE ROOT PLANTS SHOULD NOT BE FROZEN. MAJOR TREES (LARGE-GROWING) WRE PRUNED BY "CUTTING BACK;" AT LEAST 2/3 OF THE BRANCHES BEING REMOVED. MINOR TREES (SMALL AND FLOWERING), SHRUBS AND VINES WERE ALSO PRUNED SEVERLY. FROM 1951 THROUGH 1959 THE LOSSES ON EACH OF 25 CONTRACTS FOR EACH SPECIES AND SIZE OF PLANT USED WERE RECORDED AT THE TIME OF COMPLETION OF EACH CONTRACT AND AT THE END OF THE ONE YEAR OF MAINTENANCE WHICH WAS REQUIRED ON 23 OF THE CONTRACTS REPORTED. THESE CONTRACTS INCLUDED THE PLANTING OF 20,523 TREES, 172,601 SHRUBS AND 134,568 VINES. ALTHOUGH THE DATA OBTAINED HAVE NOT PROVED TO BE OF THE VALUE ORIGINALLY ANTICIPATED, THE AUTHORS ARE OF THE OPINION THAT CERTAIN GENERAL PRINCIPLES EVOLVED FROM MANY YEARS OF EXPERIENCE ARE SUPPORTED BY THE STUDY. THE DESIGNER MUST BE AWARE OF THE ECOLOGICAL CONDITIONS OF THE SITE FOLLOWING COMPLETION OF CONSTRUCTION. CONDITIONS THEN WILL BE QUITE DIFFERENT THAN THOSE EXISTING PRIOR TO CONSTRUCTION, AND AN OBSERVATION OF NATIVE VEGETATION WILL NOT BE ADEQUATE TO EVALUATE SITE POTENTIALS. THE DESIGNER SHOULD ALSO BE AWARE OF THE AVAILABILITY OF MATERIAL SPECIFIED. TOO FREQUENTLY MATERIAL BARELY MEETING SPECIFICATIONS MUST BE ACCEPTED BECAUSE OF SHORT SUPPLY OF PLANTS OF SUITABLE GRADE. MAINTENANCE FACTORS SHOULD BE CONSIDERED BY THE DESIGNER. THE LOSS OF HEDERA HELIX BALTICA IS NEGLIGIBLE AT THE END OF THE CONTRACTOR'S MAINTENANCE PERIOD, WHEREAS AFTER SIX YEARS THE LOSS IS 95 PERCENT. PERSONNEL WERE NOT AVAILABLE TO DO ESSENTIAL WEEDING. PLANTS REQUIRING SPECIAL CARE OR MAINTENANCE SHOULD BE AVOIDED. THE QUALITY OF THE PLANT IS OF PRIMARY IMPORTANCE. NURSERY GROWN STOCK IS GENERALLY OF BETTER QUALITY THAN COLLECTED STOCK. LOSSES OF COMPTONIA, KALMIA, LONICERA, RHUS, AND VACCINIUM WERE COMPARATIVELY HIGH AND ARE ATTRIBUTED TO THE FACT THAT THESE PLANTS WERE COLLECTED. ALTHOUGH THE DATA DOES NOT SUPPORT THE BELIEF THAT LOSSES ARE LOWER FOR SMALLER SIZES IT SHOULD BE NOTED THAT THE MAXIMUM SIZES ARE COMPARATIVELY SMALL. SMALLER SIZES ARE GENERALLY MORE READILY AVAILABLE. THE IMPORTANCE OF A SHORT TIME INTERVAL BETWEEN DIGGING AND PLANTING, AND THE CARE OF MATERIAL DURING THAT INTERVAL, CANNOT BE STRESSED TOO STRONGLY. WATERING DURING THE FOLLOWING THE PLANTING OPERATION IS ANOTHER FACTOR OF PRIME IMPORTANCE WITHIN THE CONTROL OF THE LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT. ADEQUATE WATERING OF SHRUBS AND VINES DURING MAINTENANCE IS, HOWEVER, OFTEN IMPRACTICAL BECAUSE OF THE RELATIVELY HIGH COST OF THE OPERATION. /AUTHOR/

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • No 928, pp 20-23, 3 TAB
  • Authors:
    • Iurka, H H
    • Hatton, C M
  • Publication Date: 0

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00205130
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Nov 29 1971 12:00AM