Forests are the best natural water conservators. They also contribute numerous valuable products which have immense , commercial significance. Recent years have witnessed the massive deforestation which is threatening the whole globe. Protection of these natural forests by afforestation and reforestation can only make the world's future better. For this it is essential to know the basics of raising and maintenance of forest nursery
The first requirement of the forest nursery planning is the area where it should be constructed. The side of the nursery should be determined by thumb rule. One lakh seedlings can be raised in an area of one acre (0.4 ha). The area of the nursery depends on the total number of plants required and the spacing in the nursery beds. This can be calculated by a formula given here.
A = (N/n) + c where
A = Area in sq. mts.
N = Total number of plantable seedlings
n = Number of plants per sq. mt. in bed
C = 25-30% additional area required for paths, drains, sheds, water tank and store.
The area of the nursery depends on the width of the seedling beds in case of polythene bag raised seedlings. In this case the area can be determined as follows.
A = (NINo. of polythene bags per square meter) + C A, N and C stands for the same as given above.
Normally the diameter of filled polybags varies from 5.5 cm -7.5 cm. In one sq. mt area, the number of polythene bags of top diameter 7.5 cms should be 100. The nursery should be situated near road, rail and should be within the radius of 5.4 mts from proposed plantations and villages. Area should be preferably plain or gently sloping. In lower hills northern and 1 eastern aspects are congenial where as in higher hills south western aspect in suitable. The ideal soil for nursery should be sandy loam to loam in texture. It should be well drained and fertile. Perennial source of water is necessary. Irrigation in polythene bags can be done by rosecan manually. Watering should be done before sun rise or after sunset.