Seedling production statistics 2006–2017

Seedling production in 2017

In 2017, the domestic nurseries supplied almost 160 million seedlings for forest regeneration. The share of spruce seedlings of the total amount produced was 65 % (103.3 million), pine 31 % (49.8 million), silver birch 4 % (6.3 million) and other species 0.3 % (0.5 million). Production increased by 1.6 million seedlings compared to the previous year.  The supply of spruce seedlings increased by almost three million plants. The number of pine seedlings decreased by a million and birch by 0.3 million seedlings. Almost all pine seedlings and 96 per cent of the spruce seedlings were grown using seed produced in Finland.

You can download an Excel table showing the total number of seedlings supplied here.

Figure 1. Number of seedlings supplied for forest reproduction by tree species.

Regional overview of seedling production

The regional overview of seedlings supplied for forest reproduction is based on material which contains the data supplied by forest nurseries south and north of Oulunjärvi on the numbers of seedlings produced in the different categories in 2006–2017. During the different years, the material covered 32–60 nurseries in Southern Finland and 9–12 nurseries in Northern Finland.

The share of bred pine seedlings is increasing fast

The production of pine seedlings in nurseries in Southern Finland has increased from 2011 to 2016. In 2017, 31.4 million were produced and the growth turned into a decrease of about two per cent. The share of bred pine seedlings has risen significantly. In 2017, 60 per cent of the seedlings were in the highest category, which is the category tested. Since 2010 almost all pine seedlings are grown from bred seed orchard seed (figure 2).

In 2017 the nurseries of Northern Finland supplied 18.6 million pine seedlings for forest reproduction. The share of bred pine seedlings has increased also in Northern Finland. The number of seedlings in the qualified category has been on the increase since 2008 and their share is now over half of the seedlings. Half of the seedlings are still produced from seeds collected from collection stands, which are of the category source-identified (figure 3).

                         

Figure 2. Number of pine seedlings supplied for forest reproduction by category, Southern Finland.

            

Figure 3. Number of pine seedlings supplied for forest reproduction by category, Northern Finland.

Number of spruce seedlings supplied is increasing

The nurseries in Southern Finland produced about 94 per cent of the spruce seedlings in Finland in 2017. The number increased by four per cent in one year, to 97.2 million seedlings. The share of selectively bred spruce seedlings in Southern Finland has not changed during the last three years (figure 4). About 72 per cent of the seedlings were grown using seeds of the category qualified.

The number of spruce seedlings produced by seed orchards in Northern Finland dropped to 6.1 million. About 40 per cent of the seedlings were grown using seed orchard seeds of the category qualified (figure 5).

                                       

Figure 4. Number of spruce seedlings supplied for forest reproduction by category, Southern Finland.

                       

Figure 5. Number of spruce seedlings supplied for forest reproduction by category, Northern Finland.

Share of bred seedlings of silver birch continued to drop

The number of silver birch seedlings dropped to 6.3 million (figure 6). A shortage of bred birch seed from seed orchards caused problems with the production of birch seedlings. In 2017 almost half (49 %) of the plants supplied for forestry reproduction were in the category qualified and the rest of the seedlings had been grown from seed collected from collection stands, which are of the category source-identified.    

The number of other tree species supplied for forest reproduction was below half a million in 2017 and that figure has remained quite stable over the last few years (figure 7). The most commonly sold seedlings in this group were larch, curly birch (Betula pendula var. Carelica) and alder (Alnus glutinosa).

                          

Figure 6. Number of silver birch seedlings supplied for forest reproduction by category.

              

Figure 7. Numbers of other tree species supplied for forest reproduction.