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Seeds are a tree's vehicle to create new life

Courtesy G. Lumis

The seed is the part of the plant that contains the germ of life that has the capacity to grow into another plant like the one from which it came. Although differing in size and shape, all seeds contain small leaves and the beginning of a trunk and root. Another thing all seeds have in common is the need for heat and moisture to begin the 'sprouting' process.

For a time the young tree will live on nourishment enclosed in the seed coating, but soon the root will reach down into the ground and the leaves will expand into the air and from that time on the young 'seedling' makes its own food from the materials it finds.

In order to grow, seedlings must have water, heat, light and air. In nature seeds fall from the ripened trees laying on the forest floor until they begin to sprout. Commercially, the forester will collect these tree seeds and transport them to nurseries where they are planted and tended in seedbeds. Two years later these 'seedlings' are then taken from the seedbeds and planted into fields called transplant beds. They are allowed to stay there from one to three years before finally being set out in rows to form a plantation, where they will eventually grow to maturity.