Cultural factors influencing root growth in the landscape or nursery include soil management, irrigation, fertilization, shoot pruning and root pruning. These affect root density, depth of penetration, spread, vertical distribution in the soil profile and mineral uptake. Root morphology varies widely among genera, species and individuals within a species. The distribution, length and weight of roots within the root ball of transplanted field-grown trees can be modified with cultural management practices. Growth of transplanted trees may be affected by these modifications. Root spread diameter increases at a rate of 0.9–2.4 m (36–96 in)/year following planting. From 1 to 10 years is required to replace the pre-transplant root system for trees transplanted from field nurseries. Root system in urban environments can be modified by cultural techniques which direct their growth.

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Author notes

Florida Agricultural Experiment Station Journal Series No. R-00406.

2Assistant Professor.

Special thanks to Dr. Gary Watson for critically reviewing this manuscript.