• Details
  • The Planfor’s nurseries are situated in the heart of the forest of Landes of Gascogne.

    Specialised in the production of young, root-balled plants, Planfor grows them in open-work containers in order to get a better root system. The production is nowadays highly varied: it has more than 400 varieties of trees and shrubs but it is the Maritime Pine which represents the most important part.

    In 2009, more than 200.000 hectares of the forest of the des Landes of Gascogne have been destroyed by the storm ‘Klaus’. The project Chablis was then created by the French government. The goal of this project spanning several years and running up to 2017 was the total reconstruction of the forest of the Landes of Gascogne.

    In the season 2012/2013, Planfor’s nurseries have commercialised 18.5 millions of young plants including 17.1 millions of young Maritime Pine plants (pinus pinaster) which represents 35 % of the national production.
    So Planfor reinforces its place of ‘expert of the Maritime Pine plants’ and contributes directly to the reforestation of approximately 13.000 hectares per year on an annual programme of 30.000 hectares.

    The young Maritime Pine plants produced by Planfor all come from improved seeds. The improving programmes rest essentially on selection criterions such as vigour, straightness and ground adaptation. These Maritime Pines with strong production potential are used within the scope of reforestation by planting plans. The nursery Planfor has been involved for a long time in the research on the genetic improvement of the Maritime Pine. Planfor has invested in the creation of 2 seeds’ orchards: one to produce Maritime Pine seeds of the 3rd generation and the other to produce seeds of the Maritime Pine ‘Landes Corse’

    The production cycle of young plants of Maritime Pine:

    The production cycle of young plants of Maritime Pine must allow supplying high quality plants throughout the entire planting season.
    In Aquitaine, the planting season generally starts beginning of September and ends in July.
    In nurseries, the young plants of Maritime Pine are therefore sown between May and September every year.
    The first plants sown are planted in the forest as soon as the following September, the last ones are planted during the month of July the following year.

    Definition of quality for a Maritime Pine plant:

    More than 95% of Maritime Pine reforestations are nowadays done using root-balled plants.
    The quality of the root-balled Maritime Pine plants is therefore essential for the forest of the Landes de Gascogne.
    The criterions which help defining this quality are the following:

    The roots and the ball

    Trees roots have 2 vital functions, providing nutrition to the tree and its mechanical stability. If one of these function is deteriorated, it can greatly jeopardise trees growth, hence the production of wood. It is therefore highly important that the root-balled plants possess a healthy root system without any serious deformation in order to guarantee a good rooting and the right development of the future trees.

    In 1993, Planfor innovates and develops its own growing system to answer to this issue.
    This has earned Planfor to win the industrialisation Grand Prix in 1993. It is thanks to its growing supports that Planfor produces root-balled plants which have dense root systems, with numerous rooting buds and without any serious deformations.

    The ‘above the ground’ part

    The quality of the part growing above the ground for a Maritime Pine is defined according to several criterions :
    - a balanced plant, with a good relation between its height and the diameter of its base,
    - the presence of axillary,
    - good colouring and lack of injuries.
    Growing containers have a volume of 200 cm3 with an available surface area of 25 cm2 for the stem.
    Containers which have a volume of 100 cm3 have a surface area of 16 cm3, that is to say 36% less.
    Planfor has chosen to produce it Maritime Pine plants in clumps of 200 cm3.
    This offers a great variability on the height of plants without getting an imbalance with the base diameter.
    Moreover, the quantity of nutritional elements available in the soil and its water-retention capacity are distinctly superior.

    Ease of delivery

    When ready, the plants must be delivered to their planting area. They must therefore being able to be loaded, transported and unloaded without impairing their quality. Planfor separates the plants from their growing support and they are packed in wooden crates, a packaging which is non-polluting, environment friendly and easily reusable.
    The packaging is a sorting intervention which obeys strict rules drawn up by our customers’ specifications and the quality standards. Each crate contains 50 plants of homogenous sizes, in roots balls of 200cm3. These crates are identified thanks to labelling which allows controlling the traceability of the product: name of the variety, origin... Next the packaged plants are palletised and dispatched by carrier.

    Ease of storage

    Planfor gives all its customers all the necessary advice to store the plants safely before planting.
    The Planfor plants can be safely stored several days which facilitates the organisation of the work site.

    Ease of planting

    The planting period puts an end to month of growing and good cares received in the nursery and is going to determine the entire development of the trees. The skill of the planter is essential, but he must also be supplied with young plants which are easy to plant. Planfor has favoured the packaging of 50 plants so that the crates weigh less than 10 kilos each.
    Planfor has developed some crates transporting-equipment which eases their carrying on site. The weight rests on the planter’s shoulders so his hands are free to plant. The root-ball of the plants does not measure more than 10cm in height and has excellent shape. The planter can easily plant the root-ball straight and without excessive tamping down.

    In the end, a high quality’s plant is the product of several factors.
    If one of the factors is not to standard, it is the entire end product which is hit, that is to say obtaining high quality trees for the future.

    Planfor: The know-how to produce on an industrial scale, high quality, root-balled plants

    Climatic conditions vary from one year to the next, but the quality of the young Maritime Pine plants must remain constant throughout the entire planting season.
    Planfor’s expertise lies in the fact that it can industrially reproduce, every new season, young root-balled plants of quality.
    This is the result of lots of research and development and of a great amount of knowledge acquired over the years.

  • Photos (2)
  • Production of young plants of Maritime Pine
    Production of young plants of Maritime Pine
    So Planfor reinforces its place of ‘expert of the Maritime Pine plants’ and contributes directly to the reforestation of approximately 13.000 hectares per year on an annual programme of 30.000 hectares.
    Author: Planfor
    Production of young plants of Maritime Pine
    Production of young plants of Maritime Pine
    The roots and the ball
    Author: Planfor

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