Expansion in the forestry sector has been inhibited by both land and permit constraints and this has shifted the focus to achieving the highest possible yields per unit of land. This can be done by matching the best species to the growing site; making use of the best genetic material available for that species; buying quality seedlings and adopting the best silvicultural practices when planting. The guide below ensures you give your trees the best possible start!

Choose the Right Species

 Take into account the following when choosing a species:

    1. The market for mature timber, i.e. pulp/poles/saw timber/etc.
    2. The climatic and soil conditions of the compartment to be planted
    3. Diseases and pests which pose a threat to a particular area/species
    4. The availability of improved genetic material for a species

More information, including a site-species matching table, is available for download on the Resources Page.

Choose the Right Plug Size 


Tray Model 128

Tray Model 98

Tray Model 128 (Deep)

Plug Volume (ml)




Plug Depth (mm)




Advantages: Cheaper seedlings & transport Improved field survival Increased plug volume, but not as expensive as the M98.
Proven track record Higher MAI/ha
Shorter seedling production time Better nursery holdability  
Disadvantages: Higher transplant stress Higher seedling cost Tap root easily bent due to the plug shape
Higher blanking requirements Higher transport cost
Less holdability in nursery Trays are heavier to handle when planting  


Place Seedling Orders on Time

Nursery growing periods for seedling orders placed:

WATTLE 3.5 months 3.5 months 4 months
EUCALYPTUS SPECIES 3.5 months 3.5 months 4 months
PINUS ELLIOTTII & GREGGII 5 months 5 months 6 months
PINUS PATULA 7 months 7 months 8 months

* If seedlings are required before the above growing periods, enquire about the availability of extra seedlings

Genetic Material

Sutherland Seedlings strives to source the best genetic material available to the industry. The nursery works closely with most major forestry companies in South Africa.

Eucalyptus Clones

Sutherland Seedlings has partnered with NCT Co-operative and the CSIR to produce E.grandis X E.nitens (GN) and E.grandis X E.urophylla (GU) cuttings.
These clones have been extensively trialled by NCT and have shown yield improvements of up to 30%, when planted on the correct site. Micro-hedges are housed in greenhouses so that all year round production is possible and the tip cuttings are rooted in heated greenhouses to improve the rooting percentage.
For the past three years the nursery has been bulking up their hedges and commercial quantities are now available on order. For more information on eucalyptus clones and their deployment, contact any member of the management team at Sutherland Seedlings.