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Frangula (caroliniana)

John Vandevender
Center Manager
USDA NRCS - Appalachian Plant Materials Center
P. O. Box 390
Alderson, West Virginia 24910

Family Scientific Name: Rhamnaceae
Family Common Name: Buckthorn family
Scientific Name: Frangula caroliniana (Walter) A. Gray
Common Name: Carolina buckthorn
Species Code: FRCA13
Ecotype: Stones River
General Distribution: Carolina buckthorn is found throughout the Central and Southeastern United States from Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio South to Texas and eastward to Florida, South and North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland.
Known Invasiveness: None
Propagation Goal: Plants
Propagation Method: Seed
ProductType: Container (plug)
Stock Type: 1-0
Time To Grow: 12 months
Target Specifications: A second spring seedling ranging in height from 6" to 18" and having a compact, well developed root system.
Propagule Collection: Mature fruit was hand harvested from a population of Stones River ecotype Frangula caroliniana located within the confines of Stones River National battlefield in South Central Tennessee.
Propagule Processing: Small lots of seed can be separated from the pulpy fruit by hand rubbing and repeated washing of the macerated material through a number 10 sieve. Repeated washing with tap water flushes the finely macerated pulpy material through the 2 millimeter openings in the sieve, leaving the clean black or reddish black seeds trapped on the sieve mesh.
Pre-Planting Treatments: Pro-mix BX with bio-fungicide was moistened and placed in heavy plastic trays. The soil was compacted somewhat to prepare a firm seedbed. Seed was spread evenly by hand on the soil surface and then covered with 1/8 to 1/4 inch of additional soil. The top layer was pressed down slightly to ensure good seed to soil contact. The seed was then artificially cold stratified at 35-38 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 days.
Establishment Phase: Upon completion of cold stratification, seed was moved to the greenhouse to stimulate germination. Seed was maintained in the greenhouse under natural lighting and a minimum temperature of 65 degrees Fahrenheit.
Length of Establishment Phase: 1 month
Active Growth Phase: Once the seedlings had developed adequate root systems, they were transplanted into 1 gallon plastic pots filled with Metro-mix 510 growing medium. Transplants were maintained at a minimum of 65 degrees Fahrenheit in the greenhouse under automatic watering and natural lighting.
Length of Active Growth Phase: 9 months
Hardening Phase: Plants were moved into a shadehouse which provided a minimum of 50 percent shade to allow for hardening off before shipping.
Length of Hardening Phase: 1-2 months
References: USDA, NRCS. 2016. The PLANTS Database (http://plants.usda.gov, 25 August 2016). National Plant Data Team, Greensboro, NC 27401-4901 USA.
USDA-FS. 2008. The Woody Plant Seed Manual. Agriculture Handbook 527.


Vandevender, John. 2016. Propagation protocol for production of Container (plug) Frangula caroliniana (Walter) A. Gray Plants 1-0; USDA NRCS - Appalachian Plant Materials Center Alderson, West Virginia. In: Native Plant Network. URL: http://NativePlantNetwork.org (accessed 2019/11/18). US Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, National Center for Reforestation, Nurseries, and Genetic Resources.

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